Edinburgh resident opens up about dangerous new trend of self prescribing nootropics

An Edinburgh resident has spoken about self prescribing nootropics off of the internet after growing frustrated with treatments prescribed by their GP.

Wednesday, 17th February 2021, 7:00 am
Above view capsule pills in plastic box- Vitamin and supplement concept.

The individual, who wishes to remain anonymous, is part of a growing group of people who are buying nootropic medicines online.

Nootropics are drugs, supplements, and other substances that are claimed to improve cognitive function, particularly memory, creativity, or motivation.

They are increasingly being pushed on social media sites such as Facebook by targeting various individuals through advertising.

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Pregabalin and other prescribed medications.

Although a number of the substances are classed as legal elsewhere in Europe - a majority of their legal statuses are ambiguous in the UK, with addiction becoming a real issue for users.

According to our anonymous case study, he started to explore nootropics like Racetam and Phenibut after feeling disappointed with existing treatments through the NHS like Pregabalin.

They suffer from a variety of health conditions ranging from mental to physical.

He said: “I began to grow frustrated with the way medicines were prescribed on the NHS and I lost a lot of faith in GP’s as they continuously would prescribe me medicines that did not make sense.

“At other times GP’s would not help me adequately deal with my sciatica, anxiety and insomnia.”

They added that they have researched the various nootropics they use and are fully aware of the negative consequences associated with self prescribing.

He said: “I began ordering Phenibut online after it was recommended to me. It’s prescribed in Russia and Eastern Europe for the same reasons as Benzos are used here. It feels like that pill from limitless, I think a lot clearer and can function without becoming down like on Pregabalin.

“I have concerns it is going to damage my brain but that is not to say that I have much faith in GP’s that can prescribe you medicines that will cause harm and addiction. Friends of mine have ended up developing serotonin syndrome through their GP’s. But I do have worries about going without nootropics as the withdrawal can be intense on these substances as they are extremely addictive.

“I like to think I can manage it relatively well but I do know others that have real issues coming off this stuff.”

A Scottish government spokesperson: “There is no guarantee to the safety or efficacy of products purchased online and the harm they can cause to patients and we discourage purchasing such items online and seek help from their GP.

“It is recommended that if a patient is having problems with their prescribed medication they should, in the first instance, go to their prescriber or their GP for help. Problematic medication withdrawals are best managed by routine, day time services that provide continuity of advice and contact. Primary care and specialist mental health services already exist with expert advice and support.”

When contacted for comment about nootropics pages on their site, a Facebook spokesperson said: “We have removed the page and adverts reported to us for violating our regulated goods policy. We do not allow content which promotes the sale or purchase of illegal or pharmaceutical drugs on Facebook, and we urge people to report anything they believe does not belong on our platforms.”

However the page was back up and running just days after this statement was given.

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