Ecstasy – Not Just a Party Drug
Ecstasy is one of the names for a substance called MDMA. You may also have heard the more recent slang term, ‘Molly.’ MDMA is short for methylenedioxymethamphetamine, and the name itself is indicative of the late night parties that ecstasy has long been a part of. Ecstasy is considered a stimulant, and has similar effects to other drugs in the stimulant class.
Ecstasy is an unusual and very powerful psychoactive drug with many reported effects.
Here are some reported effects from Ecstasy:
- Strong feelings of intimacy
- Reduced feelings of fear or depression
- Increased feelings of mental and physical euphoria that it elicits from its users
- Mild psychedelic state
- Heightened sense of tactile sensation
- Pronounced period of introspection
However, the “comedown” from ecstasy is significant, often leading to periods of depression.
Ecstasy also has effects on the body:
- It can cause increased heart rate and blood pressure, which is particularly dangerous for those who are already at-risk in those areas
- Ecstasy can be dehydrating, which combined with the similarly dehydrating effects of alcohol and the fact that both are often consumed at dance clubs, means that dehydration can be a real and serious issue
- The user is in an altered state and might not even be aware of this risk
- Toxicity from ‘cut’ MDMA with amphetamines, ibuprofen, talcum powder or other additives
Some of the biggest dangers of Ecstasy and Molly are social and emotional. Ecstasy and Molly users are known for their risk-taking behavior, their ability to use and overdose on other drugs while using MDMA, and developing an Ecstasy addiction. The psychedelic state and false euphoria can lead to dangerous situations. This can be anything from engaging in unprotected sex to climbing up on rooftops.
Here’s a story about the consequences one man faced from Ecstasy:
Recently, a man was sentenced for ten years in a United States prison for smuggling a large quantity of Ecstasy, also known as MDMA, in a hidden compartment in his pick-up truck. The man pleaded guilty back in January to conspiracy to distribute the drug. The man was carrying 200,000 ecstasy pills, weighing 51.5 kilograms, when he was captured last October by undercover agents working in association with the United States Immigration and Customs Enforcement division. After his initial sentence is served, the man will serve an additional three years of supervised release.
Ecstasy is also highly illegal in the current legal and political climate. Under the 2003 RAVE Act (Reducing Americans’ Vulnerability To Ecstasy) sponsored by Senator Joseph Biden, now the Vice-President of the United States, it is illegal to distribute, promote, or profit from ecstasy in any way, shape or form. Although ecstasy is believed to have some usefulness in psychotherapy, it has been otherwise illegal since 1985. Currently, Federal charges for ecstasy possession are equivalent to the charges for heroin or marijuana. (Possession of one gram of ecstasy carries the same sentence of possession of one gram of heroin, or 2.2. pounds of marijuana.)
Ecstasy and Molly are no longer considered ‘party drugs.’ Now they have extensive legal consequences to go along with the physical, social and emotional ones.
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