MDMA, also known as Ecstasy, XTC, Lovedrug, Happy Pill, Molly is a synthetic drug that alters mood and perception (awareness of surrounding objects and conditions). MDMA is a chemical substance similar to both stimulants and hallucinogens, producing feelings of increased energy, pleasure, emotional warmth, and distorted sensory and time perception.
MDMA is a synthetic, psychoactive drug with a chemical structure similar to the stimulant drugs like crystal meth and the hallucinogen mescaline.
MDMA is an illegal drug that acts as both a stimulant and psychedelic, producing an energizing effect, as well as distortions in time and perception and enhanced enjoyment from tactile experiences. MDMA is commonly known on the streets as Ecstasy and Molly.
The Origin Of MDMA.
MDMA was first synthesized by a German company in 1912, possibly to be used as an appetite suppressant. MDMA pills have been available as a street drug since the 1980s and use escalated in the 1990s among college students and young adults.
Ecstasy was most often distributed at late-night parties called “raves”, nightclubs, and rock concerts.
As the rave and club scene expanded to metropolitan and suburban areas across the country, MDMA use and distribution increased as well. MDMA is frequently used in combination with other drugs. Today, the drug is still used by a broader group of people who more commonly call it Ecstasy or Molly.
Ecstasy (XTC)can be mixed with other substances such as ephedrine, amphetamine, and methamphetamine. In 2016, about 21 million people between the ages of 15 and 64 used ecstasy (0.3% of the world population).
This was broadly similar to the percentage of people who use cocaine or amphetamines, but lower than for cannabis or opioids. In the United States, as of 2017, about 7% of people have used MDMA pills at some point in their lives and 0.9% have used it in the last year.
As of 2019, MDMA has no approved medical uses. Limited exceptions are sometimes made for research. Researchers are investigating whether MDMA may assist in treating severe, treatment-resistant posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD) with phase 3 clinical trials to look at effectiveness and safety expected to begin in 2019.
How Do People Use MDMA?
MDMA is most often available in tablet (Ecstasy Pills) or capsule form and is usually ingested orally. Ecstasy traffickers consistently use brand names and logos as marketing tools and to distinguish their product from that of competitors.
The logos may be produced to coincide with holidays or special events. Among the more popular logos are butterflies, lightning bolts, and four-leaf clovers. MDMA is also available as a powder (Molly) and is sometimes snorted, taken as a liquid, and it is occasionally smoked but rarely injected.
Because of its stimulant properties, MDMA is associated with vigorous physical activity for extended periods in warm environments. This can lead to one of the most significant, although rare, acute adverse effects a marked rise in body temperature (hyperthermia).
Research in rats shows that even moderate doses of MDMA interfere with the body’s ability to regulate temperature, potentially leading to deadly consequences in warm environments.
Using ecstasy in combination with vigorous exercise causes dehydration, leading some people to drink large amounts of liquids. However, this could increase the risk of electrolyte imbalance or brain swelling because Ecstasy causes the body to retain water.
What Are The Side Effects of MDMA Use?
These illicit drugs like MDMA pills, Adderall, and Xanax Alprazolam exert their primary effects in the brain on neurons that use the chemicals serotonin, dopamine, and norepinephrine to communicate with other neurons.
After using drugs like Ecstasy pills, OxyContin pills, and Xanax alprazolam, Serotonin is most likely responsible for the feelings of empathy, elevated mood, and emotional closeness experienced with this drug. Overall, these neurotransmitter systems play an important role in regulating: mood, energy/activity, and the reward system, etc.
MDMA stimulates the release of the neurotransmitters such as serotonin from brain neurons, producing a high that lasts from 3 to 6 hours, but its length can be variably based on the user. Ecstasy’s rewarding effects vary with the individual taking it, the dose, purity, and the environment in which it is taken.
However, Ecstasy can also cause a number of acute adverse health effects. For example, while cases of fatal Ecstasy overdoses are rare, they can potentially be life-threatening with symptoms including high blood pressure, faintness, panic attacks, and in severe cases, a loss of consciousness and seizures.
Ecstasy can produce stimulant effects such as an enhanced sense of pleasure and self-confidence and increased energy. Its psychedelic effects include feelings of peacefulness, acceptance, and empathy.
Ecstasy Health Hazards.
Ecstasy users may have problems similar to those experienced by amphetamine and cocaine users, including addiction. Research has shown that animals will self-administer MDMA, an indicator of a drug’s abuse potential.
Damage to brain serotonin neurons is also probable; serotonin is thought to play a role in regulating mood, memory, sleep, and appetite. Studies are conflicting on Ecstasy use and its effects on memory and cognition.