Substance Use

What Are the Side Effects of MDMA (Ecstasy) Abuse?

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Side Effects of MDMA (Ecstasy) Abuse

MDMA or (ecstasy) is a popular illicit drug often used in raves and nightclubs for its stimulating and euphoric effects. Other names for MDMA include the chemical name 4-methylenedioxy-methamphetamine and Molly. MDMA use can come with many side effects, and extended use can lead to long-term well-being and health effects.

MDMA abuse can lead to a substance use disorder over time. You should seek substance use treatment if you believe your drug use is becoming problematic.

Call us at (855) 430-9439 to find out about our treatment options for substance use disorder.

Effects of Ecstasy Use

People take MDMA for the “high” it produces. Users often feel intense happiness and a greater sense of well-being. Other effects of ecstasy include:

  • An increase in energy
  • Changes to sensory perception
  • Jaw clenching
  • Blurred vision
  • Fast heart rate
  • High blood pressure
  • Impulsivity

Taking MDMA causes an influx of serotonin in the brain, which causes users to feel an increased connection with others. MDMA use affects everyone differently. However, some other common side effects are:

  • Sweating excessively
  • A high body temperature
  • A feeling of overheating
  • Cramping in muscles

The effects of MDMA may vary when combined with other substances, such as alcohol or marijuana. Combining substances can also be very dangerous.

More About Overheating on MDMA

Overheating (hyperthermia) can be one of the dangerous side effects of MDMA. It is where the body temperature becomes too high to regulate itself. Studies show hyperthermia can occur even with moderately low MDMA doses.

Someone with hyperthermia needs to cool down quickly to avoid serious health effects. This can be difficult because MDMA is often taken in nightclubs, raves or other warm and crowded settings. When someone has hyperthermia, their body is unable to regulate its temperature.

Hyperthermia can cause parts of the body to stop functioning correctly. This can lead to long-term health effects such as brain damage or, in some cases, death.

Someone experiencing hyperthermia or a high body temperature as a result of ecstasy use may begin to feel very thirsty. This thirst can cause users to drink too much water quickly, which can lead to water intoxication (hyponatremia). Although this is rare, it can be fatal and is a substantial risk to MDMA users.

Someone with a substance use disorder is more likely to develop health problems relating to their substance use. If you believe your MDMA use affects different areas of your life, you may benefit from a treatment program. Call our phone number today at (855) 430-9439 or send us a message for more information.

Serotonin Syndrome and MDMA Use

Substance abuse of any drug that increases levels of serotonin (serotonergic drugs) can lead to serotonin syndrome. Most cases of serotonin syndrome are a result of interactions between two or more serotonergic drugs. This means that anyone already taking medication, such as antidepressants, opioids, antibiotics, or antihistamines, may be at risk of developing serotonin syndrome from MDMA use.

Although fatalities are rare, they do occur and usually relate to hyperthermia and seizures. Serotonin syndrome and hyperthermia (both possible side effects of MDMA use) together can be very dangerous and require intensive care.

Disclaimer:This is not medical advice. You should always talk to your doctor about any medication you are taking and any possible interactions.

Long-Term Health Effects of MDMA Use

MDMA use can cause several long-term side effects. These can include cardiovascular problems and kidney failure. Other possible long-term health effects are:

  • Heart disease
  • Sleep difficulties
  • Mental health problems
  • Impaired cognitive function
  • Psychosis
  • Substance use disorder (SUD)

Evidence suggests that long-term MDMA use can result in mental disorders and have significant effects on the brain. The health effects of short-term and persistent MDMA use are substantial, and these can be amplified further if the person has a SUD.

MDMA and Substance Use Disorder

Although the true addictive nature of MDMA as a substance is still relatively under-researched, it affects the same neurotransmitters as many other addictive substances. Studies suggest that sustained MDMA use can lead to substance use disorders.

A substance use disorder can affect many areas of a person’s life, leading to health and social problems. If someone has a substance use disorder, they may feel the compulsion to take MDMA and find it difficult to think of anything else. Substance use disorder usually affects behavioral health and results in the following signs:

  • Social withdrawal
  • Secretive drug use
  • Mood swings
  • Withdrawal symptoms
  • Failed attempts to cut down or stop using the substance
  • Problems at work or school
  • Failing to meet responsibilities
  • Relationship breakdowns with family or friends

These are just some of the signs of substance use disorder. Some people may display some or all of these or may also display other signs. Many people with substance use disorders also have co-existing mental health problems.

Substance Use Disorder Treatment Options

Substance use disorder treatment is primarily based on behavioral therapy. Although some people may require detox as part of treatment, they will usually go on to have some form of therapy relating to behavioral health. Behavioral therapy, such as CBT or DBT, also helps treat other mental disorders that coincide with or have developed as a result of substance use disorder.

Typically, the person will attend a treatment center as an inpatient or outpatient, depending on their needs and the severity of their SUD. Treatment providers assess the needs of the individual and recommend individualized treatment options.

Get Help Today

If you think you have a SUD, it’s never too late to get help. Our team of professionals is highly experienced in helping people recover.

At Zinnia Healing, we offer individualized treatment options that work for you. We offer support and guidance at every step. Our inpatient and outpatient programs are designed to help people kick substance use disorders for good.

We have the best medical professionals at our treatment center to ensure you get the help and medical advice you need throughout your recovery.

Recovering from a substance use disorder is challenging, but we’re by your side. Contact Zinnia Healing today to learn more about our treatment options.