About Ecstasy Addiction
Ecstasy is what is called a “party drug” first appearing
in the 1960's as a diet pill and later a treatment for some mental
diseases. MDMA (3, 4- Methylenedioxymethamphetamine), is the
technical name for this drug, but the bottom line is that it is
widely abused and has no meaningful medical purpose. The drug is a
stimulant and so that was its original purpose to help in appetite
control. The drug is also hallucinogenic, so mental health patients
found no benefit from MDMA and many suffered from its effects. The more that is found about Ecstasy addiction the more people realize how bad it is for you.
A “club” drug
Ecstasy is a club drug because that's where it got it's popularity. College students are the most common users, and the drug is used to enhance an evening of dancing and club hopping. Those abusing this drug will not develop a physical addiction to Ecstasy, at least not in the same way that heroin addicts do.
Rather, they like the way they feel when they are on the drug and so they develop a psychological dependence. Even so, if you call an Ecstasy user an addict, no matter how much drug they use and no matter how often they use it, you'll probably get an argument. Ecstasy can produce a euphoric high, a sense of well being and people crave that relaxed and happy state of mind. The effects are also long-lasting and users can stay high for as much as five hours, and the after effects, commonly called “the hug” can last for up to three days.
Users desire this feeling and so the drug becomes a part of their
life. It seduces them. Users won't admit to being addicts, but they
will share that they use it often, they don't want to quit using and
they can't live without it, but they're not addicted. That's the difference about Ecstasy addiction from other drugs.
Comes in a pill or can be injected
Ecstasy comes in pill form, but some user chose to inject it. The pills or capsules can also be used as suppository, called “shafting.”
People who use Ecstasy, like users of other illegal drugs, will develop a tolerance to it. That means they need top take more drug to achieve the same high they had previously. The trouble they have is that they get an amphetamine high and not the euphoric, all is well high, that they got before. People who use this drug over a period of time rarely get the same results. Therefore, regular users will take a break from time to time so their brain chemistry can get back to “normal” and when they resume the use of the drug, it will achieve a desired effect. For regular users, that approach is probably much easier said than done.
Craving is often a sign of addiction
The red flags about Ecstasy addiction start to go up when they no longer just use it, but they start to crave it and think about when they are going to get it and use it again. When a person must use the drug, a state of mind that suggests they are no longer able to make a choice, but must use to feel right, that is when abuse becomes addiction
Choice is the operative word. Addicts can't concentrate, they have short-term memory problems or they suffer mood swings. They don't even know something is wrong. Even though the effects are limited after prolonged use, and even though coming down off the drug gets to be problematic, even though the amphetamine in the drug causes the user to lose sleep and leads to other serious health issues, they will staunchly defend their position of not being addicted. Their over-all health breaks down, making them susceptible to colds, flu and infections.
Health problems common with Ecstasy addiction
MDMA does not metabolize like other drugs and can cause kidney and liver damage. It can also cause a fatal heart attack, or at the very least increase heart rate and blood pressure. The negative side-effects of Ecstasy include, but are not limited to depression, and anxiety, even long after use.
Ecstasy is sold on the street and users do not really know what they are buying, so the ingredients may not match those of the last dose they took, so results could be frightening. What is being sold as Ecstasy may not be Ecstasy. Because of that the user may be in serious jeopardy of trouble when the Ecstasy is mixed with other drugs, most commonly alcohol.
“Date rape” not uncommon
There is another even more sinister side about Ecstasy addiction. It's often referred to as the “love drug.” It may be slipped into a drink, causing the unsuspecting user to become impaired. It has been proven to cause memory loss, and so “date rape” is a possibility, as men take advantage over female targets.
Ecstasy presents more problems than benefits. If you suspect
a friend or family member is using this drug, we encourage you to try
to guide them into treatment.
Once the psychological addiction to this drug takes hold, they are at risk of developing health problems, social problems and having their life fall apart. A good friend is one who will be honest and speak the truth, regardless of the negative consequences.