Ecstasy Detox and MDMA Addiction

What is MDMA?

MDMA is a psychoactive stimulant and hallucinogenic drug first developed to treat different psychological issues. MDMA is 3-4-methylenedioxy-methamphetamine which is often combined with other drugs such as cocaine, PCP, or other amphetamines.  MDMA on its own does not appear to be as highly addictive as other substances, but ecstasy is usually cut with more addictive drugs. MDMA addiction occurs when individuals become dependent on ecstasy and are not able to function without the drugs in their systems.  MDMA is a very popular drug used by mostly younger individuals as it gives users intense feelings of euphoria.

MDMA addiction can be distinguished from ecstasy abuse based on four criteria. Should you be concerned that you or a loved one has developed MDMA addiction that requires treatment, Coastline has inpatient rehab services specifically designed to aid ecstasy detox and MDMA treatment.

  1. The physical effects of MDMA addiction can cause symptoms similar to other stimulant abuse. Some of these symptoms can be visual disturbances, muscle tension, jaw clenching, or chills. Another symptom of MDMA addiction is extreme weight loss that cannot be otherwise explained.
  2. The mental effects of MDMA addiction will cause emotional instabilities that would be uncharacteristic of the individual before drug abuse. Some of these emotional changes can be depression, mental confusion, and insomnia.
  3. Psychological effects of MDMA addiction will cause intense drug cravings that make it very difficult for the individual to expend energy on anything else. These cravings disrupt work productivity, social engagement, and scholastic performance.
  4. Financial instabilities that are directly linked to MDMA addiction and drug seeking behaviors.

How Ecstasy is Taken

MDMA is usually taken in tablet or capsule form, although it is not uncommon for ecstasy to be snorted or in suppository form. The pill form of MDMA can be different colors and even have designs on them. Ecstasy is often sold combined with other drugs when in capsule form or tablet form, and is referred to as Molly on the street. Many times, ecstasy is sold at “raves” or all night parties and concerts. When taking MDMA pills, the drugs take about 15 minutes before the effects are felt. The effects of MDMA addiction on the brain are the result of the influx of three neurotransmitters that carry messages to specific cells. These three brain chemicals are serotonin, norepinephrine, and dopamine. Each of these chemicals has a unique job within the brain to level mood, activity levels, rest, and the sensations of pain. Sexual activity is also controlled by serotonin, which can result in feelings of arousal and trust. These feelings of closeness are one of the main reasons MDMA has become the ‘rave’ drug at parties.

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Signs and Symptoms of MDMA Addiction and Abuse

When ecstasy or MDMA is abused, even for short periods of time, there are side effects that can become problematic for the user. Some of these are short term symptoms of MDMA abuse that will fade as the drugs leave the system. The length of time required for these symptoms to decrease in severity can depend on several factors. The type of MDMA drug used and the amount consumed will both impact the severity of side effects. Some of these short term symptoms of MDMA use are the following:

 

  • Blurry vision
  • Excessive perspiration
  • Teeth grinding
  • Jaw Clenching
  • Muscle cramping
  • Nausea
  • Hyperactivity

There are numerous long-term effects of MDMA detox that an individual may experience.  As the drugs begin to clear the body, there are some other side effects that can last for a week or so. Some of these symptoms of MDMA detox are the following:

  • Irritability
  • Anxiety
  • Aggression
  • Attention Deficits
  • Memory Loss
  • Insomnia
  • Lack of appetite
  • Depression
  • Lack of sexual drive

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According to the National Institute of Drug Abuse, many people quickly develop a psychological or physical dependency on MDMA or ecstasy. Ecstasy is classified as a Schedule 1 drug which means that it is considered to have addictive qualities. It is important to note that most MDMA tablets also contain other highly addictive substances such as PCP, which can greatly increase the likelihood that they can cause dependency. Tolerance to MDMA is another issue for those abusing Molly or ecstasy as most will increase their dosing to maintain the same euphoria felt previously. When individuals that have developed MDMA addiction attempt to stop using, the drop in brain chemicals can result in deep depression. As a result, ecstasy users will often continue taking the drugs in an attempt to combat feelings of intense loneliness or isolation.

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