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It also produces psychedelic effects, similar to the hallucinogens mescaline and LSD. It is now used by a broader range of people. Government has determined that it has no medical benefit and a high potential for abuse. Researchers, however, continue to investigate the possible medical benefits, for example, with patients that have post-traumatic stress disorder PTSD and terminal cancer patients with anxiety. However, patients in those studies are under strict medical supervision. Most people who use MDMA take it in a pill, tablet, or capsule.
The pills can be different colors and sometimes have cartoon-like images on them. But this is mostly a marketing gimmick—testing on "Molly" seized by police shows a variety of other ingredients. In fact, researchers and law enforcement have found that much of the Ecstasy sold today contains other harmful and possibly deadly drugs.
Some MDMA pills, tablets, and capsules have also been found to contain caffeine, dextromethorphan found in some cough syrupsamphetamines, PCP, or cocaine. Once an MDMA pill or capsule is swallowed, it takes about 15 minutes for the drug to enter the bloodstream and reach the brain. MDMA produces its effects by increasing Other names for ecstacy activity of three neurotransmitters the chemical messengers of brain cells : serotonindopamineand norepinephrine. Let's take a look at the importance of these chemicals:. Because MDMA increases the activity of these chemicals, some users experience negative effects.
They may become anxious and agitated, become sweaty, have chills, or feel faint or dizzy. Even weeks later, people can experience confusion, depression, sleep problems, drug craving, and anxiety, because the surge of serotonin caused by MDMA reduces the brain's supply of this important chemical.
Learn more about how the brain works and what happens when a person uses drugs. And, check out how the brain responds to natural rewards and to drugs. The changes that take place in the brain with MDMA use affect the user in several ways. These include:. Because MDMA does not always break down in the body, it can interfere with its own metabolism. This can cause harmful levels of the drug to build up in the body if it is taken repeatedly within short periods of time. High levels of the drug in the bloodstream can increase the risk for seizures and affect the heart's ability to beat normally.
Researchers are not sure if MDMA causes long-term brain changes or if such effects are reversible when someone stops using the drug. However, studies have shown that some heavy MDMA users experience problems that are long lasting, including confusion, depression, and problems with memory and attention.
Yes, you can die from MDMA use. On rare occasions, this can lead to a sharp rise in body temperature known as hyperthermiawhich can cause liver, kidney, or heart failure or even death.
What is known is that MDMA targets the same neurotransmitters that are targeted by other addictive drugs. But, some users experience unpleasant withdrawal symptoms after regular daily or almost daily use of the drug is reduced or stopped, such as:.
MTF Data. Explore teen substance use trends over time, by grade and substance with an interactive chart featuring Monitoring the Future data from to present. If a friend is using drugs, you might have to step away from the friendship for a while. It is important to protect your own mental health and not put yourself in situations where drugs are being used. Content on this site is available for your use and may be reproduced in its entirety without permission from NIDA. Department of Health and Human Services. National Institutes of Health. Let's take a look at the importance of these chemicals: Serotonin —plays a role in controlling our mood, aggression, sexual activity, sleep, and feelings of pain.
The extra serotonin that is released by MDMA likely causes mood-lifting effects in users. Some experience altered sense of time and other changes in perception, such as a more intense sense of touch. Serotonin also triggers the release of the hormones oxytocin and vasopressin, which play a role in feelings of love, sexual arousal, and trust. This may be why users report feeling a heightened sense of emotional closeness and empathy.
Dopamine —helps to control movement, motivation, emotions, and sensations like pleasure. The extra dopamine is linked to continued cravings for the drug. Norepinephrine—increases heart rate and blood pressure, which are particularly risky for people who have problems with their heart and blood circulation.
Long-Term Effects Researchers are not sure if MDMA causes long-term brain changes or if such effects are reversible when someone stops using the drug. The chart below shows the percentage of teens who use MDMA. Swipe left or right to scroll. What should I do if someone I know needs help? If you, or a friend, are in crisis and need to speak with someone now: Call the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline at TALK they don't just talk about suicide—they cover a lot of issues and will help put you in touch with someone close by If you want to help a friend, you can: Share resources from this site, including this.
Encourage your friend to speak with a trusted adult. Where can I get more information? Related Articles Image.Other names for ecstacy
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MDMA Drug Slang/Code Words