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Ecstasy Abuse Signs, Symptoms and Addiction Treatment

Ecstasy is a synthetic drug that is also known as MDMA. It has psychoactive properties and is a stimulant. A person can take it as a capsule or a tablet, and it is often found in clubs and party scenes. Ecstasy is known by many names. The street names for ecstasy include XTC, X, hug, beans, love drug, and Adam. To learn more about ecstasy, call our hotline at (800) 943-0566 any time, day or night.

Ecstasy Abuse Quiz question 1

What is ecstasy?

MDMA, methylenedioxymethamphetamine, is a chemical in the amphetamine family. Ecstasy as it is sold can have a variety of compositions including corn starch, detergent, amphetamines, caffeine, and/or aspirin. It is sold as a gel, powder, or tablet. It is usually swallowed, but can be snorted or injected. (source) Ecstasy was originally developed by Merck in 1912 proposed as an aid to psychiatric counseling but not used due to its limited applications. It is a central nervous system stimulant with mild hallucinogenic effects. It is an internationally controlled substance. (source)

Common names for ecstasy

  • Adam
  • Beans
  • Clarity
  • Disco Biscuit
  • Hug Drug
  • Lover???s Speed
  • Peace
  • STP
  • X
  • XTC (source)
  • E
  • Molly
  • Roll

Videos on ecstasy

Quotes from ecstasy addicts

???It was the most amazing feeling I had ever felt. From there it all snowballed. I went from using one pill a night to as many as 13. At the time, I had a good amount of money put away, and I was traveling a lot, partying hard everywhere I went. At my worst, I partied for twenty hours straight, did ecstasy, special K, weed, and GHB, and ended up in a house full of complete strangers, totally wasted. After a year of partying, my money was gone, and I fell into a deep depression. I considered suicide many times, and seemed to only be content when I was wasted, leaving my problems behind.??? (source)

Signs and Symptoms
The short-term side effects of ecstasy include mental stimulation, emotional warmth and increased physical energy. Enhanced sensory perception is also a potential side effect. This means that a person taking the drug may seem to be very friendly, hyperactive or full of energy, may see or hear things that others can't at the same distance (but these are not hallucinations or delusions), and may seem wide awake, even after hours of activity.

Adverse symptoms of ecstasy use may include:

  • Nausea
  • Chills
  • Sweating
  • Blurred vision
  • Muscle cramps
  • Clenching of the teeth

Ecstasy also disrupts the body's normal regulation of temperature. This can lead to hyperthermia and can sometimes be lethal. For more information, call us at (800) 943-0566.

Ecstasy Abuse Quiz question 2

How many people have used ecstasy in their lifetime?

United States, aged 12+

In the US, use of ecstasy is somewhat common - in 2013, over 17 million people reported having tried it.

Effects of Ecstasy Abuse
Ecstasy is abused by taking a tablet or capsule of the drug. The drug is a synthetic psychoactive chemical mix that is similar to methamphetamine and mescaline. It commonly gives users feelings of euphoria, distortions in time, distortions in perception, and more.

This illicit substance is common and popular in the nightclub and rave scenes. Sometimes, MDMA is used in collaboration with other drugs, like marijuana, methamphetamine, ketamine, cocaine and Viagra. This is referred to as a multiple-drug experience.

Ecstasy can produce a number of long-term effects that are detrimental to the body. These include:

  • Confusion
  • Depression
  • Sleep problems
  • Severe anxiety
  • Cravings for the drug

A user may crave the drug after only taking it a few times. Chronic users may show poor performance on cognitive or memory tasks.

Ecstasy is addictive for some users. Dependency is likely in nearly half the cases of users, according to the NIDA, and these users may also suffer from withdrawal. Withdrawal symptoms include fatigue, a loss of appetite, trouble concentrating and depression.

The effects of Ecstasy use are similar to stimulants. Some of these symptoms include:

  • Nausea
  • Blurred vision
  • Muscle tension
  • Faintness
  • Chills
  • Sweating
  • High heart rate
  • High blood pressure

These symptoms are particularly dangerous for those with circulatory problems or heart disease.

Ecstasy Abuse Quiz question 3
h2>Legal penalties for ecstasy

  • Ecstasy is a Schedule I illicit drug in the United States
  • Manufacture/distribution in excess of 50g - 10 years to life
  • Sentence compounded when morbidity and mortality are linked to distribution and raises penalty to 20 years - life and an $8-20 million fine.
  • Possession of 5-49 grams carries sentence of 5-40 years
  • (source)

History of ecstasy related legislation

Ecstasy was unregulated until 1985 at which point it was labeled a Schedule 1 illicit drug and regulated as such. (source)

Ecstasy Abuse Treatment
Ecstasy abuse treatment is available for those who suffer from addiction. There are no drug treatments for addiction to ecstasy, so cognitive-behavioral therapy is commonly used to help manage the psychological effects of the drug after detoxification. For information on how to help an Ecstasy addict, contact our helpful 24-hour hotline at (800) 943-0566.

Ecstasy Abuse Quiz question 4

Ecstasy production

Production mainly occurs in Canada, primarily British Columbia, but also Ontario and Quebec. The vast majority of ecstasy production has been linked to ethnic Chinese groups who are importing MDP2P, the necessary precursor to Ecstasy from China. (source)

Street price of ecstasy

The street price of ecstasy varies drastically around the world, from $3.80 per dose in the UK to $78.10 in Singapore.

Physical and mental effects of ecstasy

  • Euphoria
  • Sexual arousal
  • Increased sensitivity to touch
  • Confusion
  • Anxiety (source)

Ecstasy-related emergency room visits by people seeking detox services

United States

From 2004 to 2009, hundreds of people yearly in the US made emergency room visits relating to ecstasy and sought detox services.

Emergency-room visits due to suicide attempts involving ecstasy

United States

ER visits in the US relating to suicide attempts where ecstasy was involved range from 481 in 2007 to 1,239 in 2006.

Ecstasy-related emergency room visits

United States

Altogether, anywhere from 10,000 to over 22,000 people in the US visited emergency rooms yearly for reasons related to ecstasy usage.

Google Trends: Searches for ???ecstasy???



Globally and in the US, search prevalence for "ecstasy" has decreased substantially from 2004 to 2014.

Lasting health effects of ecstasy

  • Damage to serotonin system
  • Reduced pleasure
  • Paranoia
  • Depression (source)

Purity levels of Ecstasy

Around the world, the purity of ecstasy can range from only 5% in Indonesia to 63.3% in Slovakia.

Rumors of updated/purified Ecstasy

In recent years, ecstasy has undergone a resurgence in popularity as supposedly pure MDMA, nicknamed ???Molly??? has hit the market. The rumors are that Molly is safer because it is more pure, but this is inaccurate. DEA states that only 13% of seized Molly actually contains MDMA (source)

How many people have used ecstasy in the past month?

United States, aged 12+

In 2012 and 2013, over 600,000 people in the US reported using ecstasy in the past month.

How many people have used ecstasy in the past year?

United States, aged 12+

Over 2.5 million people in the US reported using ecstasy in the past year in 2012 and 2013.

Percentage of workforce with positive drug tests for ecstasy

In the US, despite somewhat common ecstasy usage, only 0.004% of the workforce tested positive for the drug in 2013.

Ecstasy Statistics
According to the National Survey on Drug Use and Health, approximately 2.8 million Americans aged 12 or older had abused ecstasy in 2009. In 2010, a drug report issued by the National Institute on Drug Abuse (NIDA) stated that in the prior year, 2.4 percent of eighth graders, 4.7 percent of tenth graders and 4.5 percent of twelfth graders had abused ecstasy at least once during the year. This is an indication of how prominent ecstasy is in the younger generation and in the clubs or schools where the age group is normally found. Ecstasy is also addictive, and a survey by NIDA indicated that 43 percent of those who used ecstasy met the diagnostic criteria for dependency.

Ecstasy Abuse Quiz question 5

Teen Ecstasy Abuse

How many youth use ecstasy?

United States

Teens are at a time in their lives where they may experiment with drugs or alcohol and may be meet new people. This age group often attends parties and clubs, and some teens may use drugs. There are special teen rehab programs that can help teens who start drugs and have trouble stopping. To help prevent your teen from using drugs, talk to him or her about the facts about ecstasy, ecstasy problems and side effects, and any other info that you think is important for teen safety at clubs and parties. The best way to prevent drug use is to make sure your child is informed about ecstasy abuse facts and how the drug can be detrimental to the body.

Ecstasy Abuse Quiz question 6

Make sure that you know the signs of drug abuse as a parent or family member of a teen. The symptoms of ecstasy abuse can be pronounced or difficult to note, so it is important to interact with your teen and to discuss the use of drugs before it becomes a problem. You can also give your child articles and info on ecstasy problems in teens, which may help him or her understand the dangers of the drug.

Need Help Understanding Your Addiction Treatment Options? Call 1-888-747-7155.