Forum for Science, Industry and Business

Sponsored by:     3M 
Search our Site:

 

Non-academic young people take brain stimulants more frequently than students

19.03.2014

Three per cent of young men in Switzerland take cognitive enhancement drugs at least once each year.

Students hope this consumption will improve their exam performance, while their non-academic contemporaries seek primarily to remain awake for longer. These are the conclusions reached by a study supported by the Swiss National Science Foundation (SNSF).

“Brain stimulants”, “Neuroenhancers” and “Smart Pills” – the terms used for chemical-induced cognitive enhancement are numerous. While these substances are actually intended for use in the treatment of attention disorders, Alzheimer's and Parkinson's, they are often taken for other purposes. In the USA, one in every 20 students uses drugs such as Ritalin or Prozac at least once a year, despite not actually suffering from an attention deficit disorder or from depression. What is the situation in Switzerland?

Less than in the USA

... more about:
»Ritalin »SNF »cognitive »disorders »drugs »substances

Researchers led by Gerhard Gmel at the University Hospital Lausanne (CHUV) surveyed young men called up for conscription to the army recruitment centres in Lausanne, Windisch and Mels, on the frequency of and reasons for their use of cognitive enhancers. In a recently published evaluation (*), the researchers find that the use of cognitive enhancers in Switzerland is less prevalent than in the USA; only 180 of 5,967 participants in the study (around three per cent) had used brain-stimulating drugs at least once in the previous year.

Exams and partying

The researchers detected large differences between students and non-academics of the same age. On average, students take various cognitive enhancers five times a year. Their primary aim is to improve performance, for example in exams. Their non-academic contemporaries take drugs almost weekly, or around 40 times a year on average; most use Ritalin and other drugs that are prescribed for attention disorders. Their main motivation is to remain awake for longer, at parties, for example.

New prevention strategies

Gmel and his team believe the new figures reveal a need to widen the focus of studies into the consumption of cognitive enhancers. So far, attention has been primarily oriented towards (US-based) students. However, in Switzerland cognitive enhancers are being used to a greater extent by non-academics, for whom new prevention strategies will need to be developed.

(*) Stéphane Deline, Stéphanie Baggio, Joseph Studer, Alexandra N’Goran, Marc Dupuis, Yves Henchoz, Meichun Mohler-Kuo, Jean-Bernard Daeppen and Gerhard Gmel (2014). Use of Neuroenhancement Drugs: Prevalence, Frequency and Use Expectations in Switzerland. International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health 11: 3032-3045
(Available to journalists as a PDF file from the SNSF at the following e-mail address: com@snf.ch)

The C-Surf cohort study

Consumption of addictive substances among juveniles and young adults living in Switzerland is more frequent on average than in other European countries. The Cohort Study on Substance Use Risk Factors (C-Surf) is looking into the reasons and opportunities for prevention. With funding from the Swiss National Science Foundation (SNSF), and under the leadership of the University Hospital Lausanne (Centre hospitalier universitaire vaudois, CHUV) and the Institute for Social and Preventive Medicine (ISPM) at the University of Zurich, C-Surf studies young men over a period of at least ten years.
http://www.c-surf.ch

Contact
Dr Gerhard Gmel
Alcohol Treatment Centre
University Hospital Lausanne (CHUV)
CH-1011 Lausanne
Phone: +41 21 321 29 59
+41 21 314 73 52
E-mail: Gerhard.Gmel@chuv.ch

This press release can be found on the website of the Swiss National Science Foundation.

Weitere Informationen:

http://www.snf.ch/en/researchinFocus/newsroom/Pages/news-140319-mm-brain-stimula...

Media - Abteilung Kommunikation | idw - Informationsdienst Wissenschaft

Further reports about: Ritalin SNF cognitive disorders drugs substances

More articles from Studies and Analyses:

nachricht High in calories and low in nutrients when adolescents share pictures of food online
07.04.2016 | University of Gothenburg

nachricht Brain connectivity reveals hidden motives
04.03.2016 | Universität Zürich

All articles from Studies and Analyses >>>

The most recent press releases about innovation >>>

Die letzten 5 Focus-News des innovations-reports im Überblick:

Im Focus: Nuclear Pores Captured on Film

Using an ultra fast-scanning atomic force microscope, a team of researchers from the University of Basel has filmed “living” nuclear pore complexes at work for the first time. Nuclear pores are molecular machines that control the traffic entering or exiting the cell nucleus. In their article published in Nature Nanotechnology, the researchers explain how the passage of unwanted molecules is prevented by rapidly moving molecular “tentacles” inside the pore.

Using high-speed AFM, Roderick Lim, Argovia Professor at the Biozentrum and the Swiss Nanoscience Institute of the University of Basel, has not only directly...

Im Focus: 2+1 is Not Always 3 - In the microworld unity is not always strength

If a person pushes a broken-down car alone, there is a certain effect. If another person helps, the result is the sum of their efforts. If two micro-particles are pushing another microparticle, however, the resulting effect may not necessarily be the sum their efforts. A recent study published in Nature Communications, measured this odd effect that scientists call “many body.”

In the microscopic world, where the modern miniaturized machines at the new frontiers of technology operate, as long as we are in the presence of two...

Im Focus: Tiny microbots that can clean up water

Researchers from the Max Planck Institute Stuttgart have developed self-propelled tiny ‘microbots’ that can remove lead or organic pollution from contaminated water.

Working with colleagues in Barcelona and Singapore, Samuel Sánchez’s group used graphene oxide to make their microscale motors, which are able to adsorb lead...

Im Focus: ORNL researchers discover new state of water molecule

Neutron scattering and computational modeling have revealed unique and unexpected behavior of water molecules under extreme confinement that is unmatched by any known gas, liquid or solid states.

In a paper published in Physical Review Letters, researchers at the Department of Energy's Oak Ridge National Laboratory describe a new tunneling state of...

Im Focus: Bionic Lightweight Design researchers of the Alfred Wegener Institute at Hannover Messe 2016

Honeycomb structures as the basic building block for industrial applications presented using holo pyramid

Researchers of the Alfred Wegener Institute (AWI) will introduce their latest developments in the field of bionic lightweight design at Hannover Messe from 25...

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>

Anzeige

Anzeige

Event News

The “AC21 International Forum 2016” is About to Begin

27.04.2016 | Event News

Soft switching combines efficiency and improved electro-magnetic compatibility

15.04.2016 | Event News

Grid-Supportive Buildings Give Boost to Renewable Energy Integration

12.04.2016 | Event News

 
Latest News

Expanding tropics pushing high altitude clouds towards poles, NASA study finds

06.05.2016 | Earth Sciences

IU-led study reveals new insights into light color sensing and transfer of genetic traits

06.05.2016 | Life Sciences

Thievish hoverfly steals prey from carnivorous sundews

06.05.2016 | Life Sciences

VideoLinks
B2B-VideoLinks
More VideoLinks >>>