Stimulants. A stimulant is a drug that makes your body work faster, often increasing your heart rate and making you less likely to sleep.
a drug or similar substance that increases physiological activity, esp of a particular organ
any stimulating agent or thing
increasing physiological activity; stimulating
Word origin of ‘stimulant’
from Latin stimulāns goading, from stimulāre to urge on; see stimulus
There are several drugs used as stimulants. Although in large part they share the same properties, their use is determined by how well they are absorbed from the gastrointestinal tract. These drugs are related to the body’s normal stimulant hormones epinephrine and norepinephrine.
Injectable stimulants are used to stimulate the heart or breathing. Epinephrine (adrenalin) is the most common.
Topical stimulants are used as decongestants , since they cause blood vessels to contract. They are also used to stop superficial bleeding by contracting the capillaries and for relief of conjunctivitis . They may be applied to the skin, inhaled, or applied in the form of drops as nose drops or eye drops.
Oral stimulants, including the two drugs in this class ( methylphenidate [Ritalin] and amphetamine) are used to treat extreme daytime sleepiness also known as narcolepsy and for their calming effect in attention-deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD).
Caffeine, a stimulant found in foods and drinks, is used to promote wakefulness and alertness.
The orally active stimulants were formerly used as an aid to dieting but were of little value for this purpose. They may still be used in the most extreme cases of obesity but are no longer routinely prescribed for this purpose. Some were widely used as decongestants for colds and allergies . They are subject to abuse, and amphetamines and methylphenidate are controlled substances in the United States.