MDMA is a lab-made drug that people consume for its euphoric effects. MDMA can also alter an individual’s mood and time and sensory perception, which can make people feel disassociated from the events happening around them. This is why MDMA treatment might be the right choice for you.
Even though MDMA produces feelings of increased energy, pleasurable feelings, warmth, and emotional closeness, the drug can cause significant — and potentially lasting — changes to the brain. The psychotropic effects of the drug are temporary. After the effects wear off, individuals tend to experience adverse side effects such as anxiety, muscle spasms, cramps, insomnia, teeth clenching, disorganized thinking, and agitation for several days or longer.
Developing an addiction to MDMA can lead to depression, heart disease, and liver and kidney failure. Prolonged MDMA use can also increase an individual’s risk of contracting and transmitting diseases such as hepatitis and HIV/AIDS. Ongoing use of MDMA can also damage the brain and nervous system and cause permanent memory damage. Excessive consumption of MDMA can also lead to heatstroke which can be fatal. The good news is professional addiction recovery programs can help treat MDMA addiction.
MDMA, which is short for 3,4-methylenedioxymethamphetamine, is a laboratory-made drug that produces a “high” that has stimulating and hallucinogenic effects. Many people say MDMA’s effects mimic amphetamines, mescaline, and LSD. Even though the drug, also known as “Ecstasy” or “Molly,” was initially used to help treat PTSD due to its calming effects and ability to change sensory perception, MDMA became a popular club drug in the late 1980s to early 2000s. During that time, the drug was mostly used at all-night dance parties called raves, as well as music festivals and concerts. Today, people use MDMA inside and outside of nightclubs.
Today, the Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) classifies MDMA as a Schedule I controlled substance. This means that MDMA isn’t approved for medical use and has a high potential for abuse and addiction. Other Schedule I controlled substances include heroin, LSD, marijuana, and peyote.
Even though MDMA has a high potential for abuse and addiction, the drug has become one of the most common illegal drugs sold on the streets. Most people consume MDMA, also known as “XTC,” “X,” “Adam,” “E,” “Molly,” and “007,” by swallowing a pill or tablet, but people can also snort the powder up their nose. Although popular, the drug’s adverse side effects have caused many people to end up in the emergency room.
Since MDMA is both a stimulant and a hallucinogenic drug, the substance affects the body in two different ways. As a stimulant, MDMA affects dopamine levels in the brain, causing sensations such as increased alertness, attention, and energy. Once these stimulating effects go away, however, dopamine levels drop, causing people to experience a crash that’s known as a drug “comedown.”
As a hallucinogenic drug, MDMA activates certain serotonin receptors in the brain involved in emotions and sensory perception. When consumed, the substance primarily affects the cerebral cortex which helps regulate mood, cognition, and perception, as well as the locus coeruleus, which receives sensory signals. MDMA’s stimulating and hallucinogenic effects typically last anywhere from 3 to 6 hours.
These stimulating and hallucinogenic effects can also cause:
MDMA can also cause the body to overheat, which can lead to muscle breakdown, kidney, liver, and heart damage, and sometimes, death.
MDMA primarily affects the brain by increasing the activity of the body’s chemical messengers, including serotonin, dopamine, and norepinephrine. At first, this reaction signals the brain to produce euphoric feelings. But ultimately, this interaction causes the brain to identify MDMA as a primary source of these essential brain chemicals. When this happens, the brain stops producing serotonin, dopamine, and norepinephrine. This shutdown can cause neurotransmitter deficiencies. Even though the brain is arguably the body’s most complex organ, it relies on neurotransmitters and other chemicals to function properly.
Serotonin is a key player in regulating mood and behavior, but it also has an effect on many other bodily functions such as sleep, digestion, blood clotting, bone health, and sexual function. Low levels of serotonin can cause:
Dopamine, the “feel-good” chemical, helps regulate body movement, learning, memory, concentration, and mood. Dopamine also helps shape motivation. Low levels of the chemical messenger can cause:
Norepinephrine provides the body with energy and helps enhance focus levels. When the brain doesn’t produce enough norepinephrine, individuals can experience:
In addition to that, MDMA can:
A large number of people who use MDMA take the substance as a pill, tablet, or capsule. Usually, the pills are different colors and have cartoon-like images on them. Most people take one tablet at a time, but some people consume more than one pill at a time, a behavior that’s known as “bumping.”
Typically, most individuals who take two MDMA tablets or capsules take the second dose of the drug as the effects of the first dose begin to fade, increasing the risk of adverse side effects. People also consume “Molly,” the pure crystalline powder form of MDMA, as a capsule. Usually, the effects of MDMA can be felt around 30-45 minutes after consumption.
Snorting the substance causes MDMA’s effects to occur more quickly and intensely. Additionally, snorting MDMA can cause damage to individuals’ nasal passages, sinuses, airways, mouth, and throat. On average, MDMA’s effects last about three hours, but individuals can experience the side effects days later.
At first, using MDMA can cause seemingly positive effects, including:
Unfortunately, these effects are temporary and not indicative of MDMA’s adverse short-term effects. Shortly after MDMA’s peak effects dissipate, individuals may start to experience some of the drug’s negative effects. Although these effects can vary from person to person, some of the most common include:
Other adverse health effects associated with MDMA can include:
Using MDMA can also cause long-term effects.
These effects can be different for everyone, but some of the most common long-term effects of MDMA include:
Prolonged MDMA use also decreases the amount of serotonin in the brain, which plays an important role in pain, mood, sexual desire, and sleep. Disrupted serotonin levels can also cause severe psychological effects, increasing the likelihood of depression and anxiety disorders.
Even though MDMA impacts everyone differently, some of the most common signs of MDMA use include:
Signs and symptoms of MDMA addiction include:
People exhibiting these signs may have an addiction to MDMA. If left untreated, an addiction to MDMA can cause:
All of these signs and symptoms point to an addiction to MDMA.
Addiction is a complex brain disease that’s characterized by compulsive substance use despite harmful consequences. This compulsive substance use interferes with normal life responsibilities such as work, school, and relationships. And often, no matter how much an individual wants or needs to stop, they continue to use their substance of choice despite negative physical, emotional, legal, financial, psychological, or social consequences.
An individual with an addiction to MDMA compulsively uses 3,4-Methylenedioxymethamphetamine. They have an irresistible urge to use that substance that goes against their own consciousness and logical thinking. The urge, which oftentimes feels uncontrollable, overpowering, and obsessive, causes them to prioritize MDMA over everything else in their lives. This can create a great deal of chaos and havoc in their personal and professional lives. Their addiction can cause them to neglect important responsibilities, skip work or school, and engage in risky behaviors. An addiction to MDMA can also negatively impact an individual’s relationships with their friends and family members.
Addiction also changes the way a person behaves. People who are addicted to MDMA may become extremely agitated and paranoid when they try to stop taking the drug. They may also experience depression, fatigue, and problems with memory and coordination.
Luckily, MDMA addiction can be treated.
Here at Meta, we know how harmful and dangerous MDMA addiction can be. We also know that individuals who receive professional treatment can experience freedom from addiction. But we also know that not everyone can quit their job and stop their lives for weeks or months at a time to attend residential treatment. That’s why we offer outpatient addiction treatment services.
Outpatient treatment is a type of addiction rehabilitation program that provides counseling, behavioral therapy, and support groups at various times throughout the week. Unlike inpatient treatment, outpatient programs don’t require individuals to live at the treatment center where they are receiving treatment.
Some of the most common benefits of outpatient care include:
Here at Meta, we know that addiction can take over an individual’s life. We also know that different people need different levels of treatment. That’s why we offer 3 different outpatient programs:
MDMA doesn’t have to rule your life. Freedom is possible. We can help you get there with our MDMA treatment programs. Contact us today if you’re ready to regain control of your life.