Phenibut for Sleep
September 4, 2023
In recent years, a large number of nootropic researchers have been studying phenibut for sleep. This nootropic compound is claimed to act as a potent sleep aid that can help with insomnia, which is why it’s used to treat sleeping disorders in some countries.
But is phenibut actually an effective sleep aid? What is the right dosage to use, and what are researchers saying about using this compound for sleep?
How Does Phenibut Help You Sleep?
Phenibut is a chain of amino acids that resembles neurochemicals in the brain that our body naturally produces. Phenibut looks like γ-aminobutyric acid (gamma aminobutyric acid), also called GABA. GABA is an important neurochemical responsible for ‘depressing’ or reducing the activity of nervous stem cells, which explains its effectiveness as a sleep agent.
Phenibut is thought to mimic the function of the naturally existing GABA in our bodies and increases the effects of other neurochemicals like serotonin and dopamine. In other words, it’s believed to prevent communication between brain cells by activating certain chemical pathways in the brain. This explains why phenibut users report lowered anxiety, less self-consciousness, and increased sleepiness.
What Is the Right Phenibut Dosage for Sleep?
According to the limited research conducted on phenibut and sleep, a standard dosing protocol might include 500 milligrams of phenibut, split into one to three doses throughout the day. Users recommend taking phenibut on an empty stomach one to three hours after eating.
If you wish to experiment with micro-dosing to see how it affects your sleep, it might be a good idea to start even smaller. Veteran users suggest starting with a dosage of one hundred milligrams to 250 milligrams.
Consume this amount in one dose, either an hour before eating or two to three hours after eating. Some users also suggest taking one capsule an hour and a half before bed.
Keep in mind that the effects of phenibut last for a relatively long time, so whether you take your capsule in the morning or before dinner, you will see the effects when you go to bed at night. This is because while the phenibut ‘high’ is thought to last around four hours, the overall effect may last up to twenty-four hours, meaning you can get up to two good nights of sleep on one dose.
What Does Research Say About Phenibut for Sleep?
While most research on phenibut has been limited to Russia, increasing evidence points to the nootropic’s effectiveness as a sleeping aid.
In one study of sixty-two patients with anxiety disorders, researchers at the Sechenov First Moscow State Medical University found that participants who received a dose of phenibut had significantly reduced sleep disorder symptoms. Another study concluded that phenibut was an effective sleep aid for patients with alcoholic abstinence syndrome and in a sample of children with asthenic disorders.
While research is still limited and further studies need to be conducted, the potential of phenibut in improving sleep and reducing symptoms of fatigue seems promising so far.
What Are the Risks of Using Phenibut for Sleep?
Phenibut side effects are usually uncommon, but users have reported some at high dosages. Most side effects are not severe and if you’re consuming phenibut in low to moderate dosages, you are unlikely to experience them.
With that said, it’s still a good idea to learn about potential side effects. These include:
- Decreased consciousness
- Rashes and itches (if you have a phenibut allergy)
Some of the more severe side effects to look out for are:
- Motor incoordination
- Loss of balance
- Hangover symptoms
Again, it’s important to note that the more severe side effects are very rare. All side effects of phenibut are thought to be dose-dependent, so you can reduce the risk of unpleasant effects by sticking to small dosages.
While research on phenibut’s effects on sleep is still limited, the evidence so far seems promising. Just make sure to stick to low to moderate doses to avoid potentially dangerous side effects. Also, remember that there is a potential for dependence, so experts discourage consuming phenibut every night–you should take it once or twice a week at the most.
Finally, the nootropic is known to interact with other substances (including alcohol, antipsychotics, sedatives, and benzodiazepines), so make sure to consult your healthcare provider before starting it.
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