Phenibut was developed in the Soviet Union in the 1960s. Since then, it’s primarily been used there as a pharma drug to treat a variety of different ailments, ranging from PTSD to stuttering to alcoholism. (A fairly wide range.) In most of the non-Russian world, phenibut is not approved for clinical usage and is instead sold as a supplement. Many believe it has a smart drug function, but the basic literature and research on this is very mixed.
I gave it a try for about 60 days. Here’s what I found.
If you suffer from any form of social anxiety and/or not wanting to talk to people in new situations that you must be a part of, phenibut is a good choice. If you take a small dosage — say 1 gram or so daily — you will see a boosted mood, energy, and generally much-lessened anxiety. For example, about six or seven days into taking this smart drug, I had to attend this speech and subsequent networking event. This was a good opportunity for me, but previously the idea would have terrified me. I took about two grams of phenibut and felt a lot more empowered, with a slight cognitive boost. My social anxiety was way down. I was able to successfully network pretty well at the two events. This is a good example of it helping someone out.
Less desirable is if you go over 5-6 grams as one dosage. It can create a kind of sleepiness/fog that makes you feel as if you took muscle relaxers and is vaguely akin to a hangover without the headache — kind of a hangover with an overall ‘loose body’ feel. Even though I’d equate it to a hangover, the problem in the large dosage context is that when you interact with other people, you may come off as drunk/inebriated. Your social anxiety may feel fine, but those people are quickly going to move away from you. There’s a strong balance needed on the dosage, as a result.
That’s one of many reasons — as with all smart drugs — that you should only buy from trusted sources and consult doctors you know and trust before beginning any smart drug process.
Many people equate the effects of phenibut to Xanax, and that’s partially right. It does make you feel calmer and more ‘open,’ but I know a lot of people who use Xanax as a sleep device on overnight flights, etc. — and in general, it doesn’t make you sleepy if you use a smaller dosage. (Larger dosages can.)
As for the sleep part of all this, there are claims all over the Internet that phenibut will help you sleep better — but you’ll see comments from insomniacs saying it didn’t quite work that way. I normally don’t have a ton of problems sleeping, but I did feel a little more rested than normal when taking phenibut over 60 days. In the past, I had sometimes used cold medicine to sleep if I was having problems — even if I didn’t have a cold. Usually from those experiences, I woke up pretty dry and groggy and generally out of it, but it has you awakening with a relatively clear head and desire to take on the day (you may need slightly more of the pill to do so, though — but again, low dosages).
My wife has pretty significant anxiety problems in the mornings — they get better as the day evolves — and specifically on Monday mornings. She also started using phenibut before bed and quickly (low dose) in the AM and it resolved a lot of her issues around Monday mornings. You’ll see some blogs and comment threads claiming it is a great anti-depressant. It does work that way for some people, but scientifically it’s actually a central nervous system depressant. The results can vary by person, so again — be careful and trust the source.
There’s relatively limited evidence that this nootropic is good for increased cognitive function, and I found that as well — its way more effective for reducing anxiety, shyness, and the tendency to focus on small details. I felt small cognitive boosts over 60 days, but nothing tremendous.
I’ve seen research and posts that it can be associated with increased problem-solving skills, but I didn’t experience that either.
It’s important to remember that this smart drug is a modified version of GABA, which is naturally released by the brain to promote feelings of calm and relaxation. That’s the logical reason it’s better as an anxiety-reducer than a cognitive stimulant.
The flip side of that goes back to my line above about the hangover/drunk sensation: alcohol also stimulates GABA receptors to reduce anxiety and stress and loosen muscles. That’s why too much of it can create the same issues as over-drinking.
There is a concern about loss of sex drive and erectile dysfunction in men. I myself didn’t experience this, but there is a mild reduction in sensation. As a result of that, some men have said it can better sex and lead to more control over ejaculation. I didn’t experience that either, but it does lengthen sex.
Regular usage can lead to some constipation, and that’s something to be aware of.
In general, phenibut takes about 2-3 hours to kick in — which is one of the slower smart drugs in terms of time until first effect.
|Seller||Name of Phenibut||Link||Cost||Rating|
|Omnit||New Mood||https://www.onnit.com/new-mood/?a_aid=bestnootropics||$29.95 for 30-count||3.3|
|PureNootropics||Phenibut||https://www.purenootropics.net/product/phenibut-capsules/||$15.99 for 90 capsules||3.4|
|PeakNootropics||Phenibut||http://peaknootropics.com/shop/phenibut/||$23.99 for 50 grams||3.5|
|Powder City||Phenibut||http://www.powdercity.com/products/phenibut-dosage||$26.99 for 125 grams||3.2|