By David Joel Miller
Study Drugs are for sale but at what price.
Study drugs and other so-called mind power improving meds are big business on the internet.
Anything related to drugs to make you think better, improve your memory or learn more with less effort is a popular search term.
Study drugs are less commonly used and less effective than most people think.
Despite the widespread belief that “everyone is doing them,” the truth is that less than 10 % of the school-age population has used a study drug.
These drugs are most popular among the late high school and first-year college students. Just at the time when students are trying to establish themselves as adults and begin a new independent life they are at most risk to begin to abuse stimulants in the name of improved learning.
Who is most at risk to begin using and abusing “study drugs?”
Students with low GPA’s, those who skip the class a lot and those who drink and drug a lot are most likely to reach for something that they see as a shortcut to putting in the study time.
We already know that there is a very direct correlation between alcohol consumption and GPA. The more you drink the lower your GPA. Taking a second drug on top of the alcohol does not improve memory.
Another disturbing trend is the increase in those students who smoke marijuana and experience difficulty learning and remembering things who reach for a study drug to compensate.
One reason that study drugs are so attractive to first-year college students is that tendency to take on too much too soon. There is a strong temptation to work full-time, try to have an apartment and a new car, possibly a new relationship and still try to carry a lot of classes towards a degree. Trying to do too much and then relying on using a drug – any drug is setting you up for failure.
What does improve grades and make you smarter?
The best study drug is good self-care. Get plenty of sleep, some basic exercise, eat well and study.
The student’s with the best grades are those who go to class. Read the book, take notes and study. Cut back on or avoid partying and your chances of good grades improve.
You can’t expect to burn the candle at both ends and then throw some magic power on it to make it last longer.
Study drugs turn out to be just another drug use trap that students can fall into.
For more on this topic check out the commentary by Amelia Arria, Ph.D. over on drugfree.org/join together/ Myth of Study Drugs.
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For more about David Joel Miller and my work in the areas of mental health, substance abuse and Co-occurring disorders see the about the author page. For information about my other writing work beyond this blog check out my Google+ page or the Facebook author’s page, up under David Joel Miller. Posts to the “books, trainings, and classes” category will tell you about those activities. If you are in the Fresno California area, information about my private practice is at counselorfresno.com. A list of books I have read and can recommend is over at Recommended Books