MDMA (3,4-methylenedioxymethamphetamine) is an illegal man-made designer drug most commonly used in the forms of ecstasy and molly. MDMA is both a stimulant and a psychedelic that creates energy and increases sensitivity to sound, touch, and visuals.
MDMA affects the brain by altering the activity of neuro-transmitters such as serotonin and increasing the release of it in the body. The drug also influences the release of the neurotransmitter, norepinephrine, which can cause an increase in heart rate and blood pressure. Though many users of the drug believe it to be the same thing as ecstasy and molly, these drugs actually contain other ingredients.
Dangers of MDMA use come from multiple doses, mixing it with other drugs, and the side effects the drug can create such as extreme dehydration, increased body temperature, and high blood pressure.
MDMA in the form of ecstasy and molly is dangerous due to the unknown chemicals it could contain. An ecstasy tablet typically contains approximately 60 to 70 milligrams of MDMA, while the crystalline or salt version of the drug is 30 to 40% pure, when accounting for the bulking and binding agents. People can be affected by the drug differently, which is common to almost all legitimate or illicit substances. Thus, the difference between a 60 and 70 milligram dose might mean very little compared to the user’s particular health statistics, like weight, age, and any underlying health issues.
MDMA is referred to as ecstasy or E, X, or XTC in its tablet form. The street names Molly and Mandy, used in various countries, refer to the drug in its crystalline form. Other street names include Adam, beans, clarity, disco biscuit, Go, Hug Drug, Lover’s Speed, Peace, STP, and XTC.
This drug usually comes in tablet form or a crystalline powder, and may even be in a liquid. The drug is most commonly taken in the capsule form where the powder is placed into the capsule or the tablet of ecstasy.
Initially created as an appetite suppressant, the designer drug, MDMA, is now classified as a mild central nervous system stimulant, as well as a hallucinogen and psychedelic.
MDMA is currently listed as a Schedule I drug under the controlled substances act. This scheduling indicates that the drug has a high potential for abuse, and currently has no accepted medical use in the United States.
MDMA is usually taken by swallowing it. Sometimes it is crushed and snorted, but it is rarely smoked or injected. Users do not normally take just one pill, an instead take several throughout a day or night.
MDMA offers both stimulant and psychedelic effects for users, which goes well with the club and rave environments. The stimulant portion allows for users to function all night, which is often the duration of raves. Euphoria, or a sense of general well-being and happiness, tops the list of sought-after effects that the drug has on individuals. It also causes the elimination of social anxiety, allowing people to socialize freely where they may have been inhibited in the past.
The side effects of this drug are typically seen as outweighing any good that can come from taking it.
Side effects associated with the use of MDMA, range from mild to serious and dangerous. This list includes, dehydration, hyperthermia, grinding of the teeth, insomnia, excessive sweating, high blood pressure and increased heart rate, nausea and vomiting, diarrhea, and ED (erectile dysfunction).
Use of the drug can cause a type of brain damage, brain lesions, along neural pathways. Other negative effects on the brain can occur as well, including changes in the density of a person’s gray matter. This drug use can also affect general brain functions, processing of information, and the impairment of other cognitive functions.
MDMA should be avoided, even for recreational or casual use, as there are certainly dangers and health risks involved.
The beginning stages of dehydration can lead to the consumption of large volumes of water, which can actually cause one of the deadly side effects, hyponatremia. In severe cases, a person’s blood sugar can drop dangerously low due to fluids being replaced but not electrolytes.
MDMA can also cause overdose, heart failure, kidney failure, seizures, paranoia, depression, irritability, impulsiveness, restlessness, and minor memory loss.
MDMA is sometimes combined with other drugs, including alcohol and other psychedelics, like mushrooms and LSD. Users claim that this further enhances all of the euphoric and hallucinogenic feelings and sensations and makes for the ultimate “trip.” Mixing ecstasy with any other drug can be toxic.
There are very few substances that can be taken habitually without leading to some level of tolerance. Regular use of MDMA can lead to building up a tolerance for the substance, the first step in becoming addicted to a drug. Withdrawal symptoms, which are said to confirm that a person is addicted to a substance, can include depression, loss of appetite, fatigue, and lack of concentration.
As with any addiction, substance dependence can take over a person’s life to the point where they care very little for anything else except buying their drug of choice and getting high. Continued use of the drug can lead to overdoses, which effect a wide variety of bodily structures.
Cognitive behavioral therapies and support groups can be successful in breaking an addiction. If you or a loved one is struggling to stop using MDMA, there are addiction specialists waiting to help you take the first steps towards recovery. Find the MDMA rehab program that’s right for you.
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