Ecstasy is MDMA (3, 4-methylenedioxy-methamphetamine), a synthetic drug used in the 1970s for psychotherapy. It has similar properties with the stimulant amphetamine and hallucinogenic mescaline. It is called the “love pill” as taking it produces a feeling of empathy and emotional (sexual) warmth towards others. However, Ecstasy or Molly, Eve, Adam, XTC or X, is taken primarily to experience a surge of euphoria and increased energy.
MDMA is taken in tablet or capsule form. “Molly” refers to a pure crystalline powder type of Ecstasy. The effect of this drug lasts from 3 to 6 hours and in most instances, users go for a second dose when the effects of the initial dose wane. Ecstasy is not physically addictive as heroin and cocaine. However, users get “addicted” to the emotional high they experience when taking the drug.
Most users take Ecstasy in combination with other addictive drugs such as GHB, cocaine, ketamine and methamphetamine.
An ecstasy user may or may not become addicted to the drug. Addiction depends on the other chemicals added to the mix. Nevertheless, this drug presents real dangers.
Less than 10% of Ecstasy pills on the market today are pure MDMA. Most pills are a mixture of toxic substances such as heroin, cocaine, ephedrine, methamphetamine, synthetic cathinones, amphetamine, caffeine, rat poison and more. The real danger of taking Ecstasy is that a user will never truly know what he is taking.
Users claim that the effect of Ecstasy is diminished after the initial dose so the next dose has to be increased. As a user takes more Ecstasy, the more toxins he takes in, which in turn increase the negative effects on the user. There are MDMA users who died from exhaustion, dehydration and heart attack as a result of taking too much Ecstasy.
This drug can cause brain, liver and kidney damage. Ecstasy today is so toxic that even a small amount could poison a person’s central nervous system.
Health Effects of Ecstasy
Ecstasy (MDMA) is quickly absorbed into the human blood stream, but the drug itself interferes with the body’s ability to break down or metabolize the drug. MDMA also interferes with the metabolism of other drugs and adulterants found in Ecstasy tablets.
Ecstasy or MDMA can have the same effects as the stimulants amphetamines and cocaine. A user may experience elevated blood pressure and heart rate which could prove fatal to those with heart disease and circulatory problems.
A user may experience short term effects such as confusion, depression, paranoia, sleep problems, anxiety, muscle tension, nausea, blurred vision, and chills and tremors as a regular drug addict. He has impaired judgment and exhibits a false sense of affection.
A cause of alarm for long-term Ecstasy users is brain damage that affects memory, learning ability, sleep and emotions. The user’s brain will no longer function efficiently as the nerve branches and nerve endings that connect and interconnect the brain are damaged. The user’s body could shut down as all vital organs will eventually be affected.
Treatment for Ecstasy Addiction
Ecstasy abuse or addiction is treatable. Treatment is based on several factors such as the user’s age, the level of his dependency or abuse, and other co-occurring psychological and physical problems. Treatment may include individual, group and family therapies, cognitive behavioral therapy, medication, anger management, sports and recreation therapy and more.
Statistics indicate that more young people are experimenting on Ecstasy. There is a need to provide accurate information about the effects and consequences of using Ecstasy. Education is the best tool to prevent Ecstasy addiction or abuse.
For more information about ecstasy addiction visit www.thecabinchiangmai.com/mdma_addiction
John Veron likes writing about healthcare, addictions and psychology. He currently stays in Chiang Mai in Thailand, not far from one of the best alcohol and drug rehabs in Asia – The Cabin Chiang Mai.