The History of Ecstasy
Ecstasy is one of those drugs that many people have heard of and several have tired, though the popularity for ecstasy has gone up and down over the years. It became very popular in the 70s and 80s as a party drug because it was legal. But when outlawed the popularity temporarily dropped as other drugs were easier to get. However, ecstasy use and abuse is growing once again. Technically speaking, any use of ecstasy is abuse as it was never intended to be taken as a party drug or one used to get high. Originally, ecstasy was for psychological warfare, then it was used to treat people through psychotherapy, but it quickly became a drug for fun as it lowered inhibitions.
As many know, original ecstasy had the chemical makeup of MDMA, but current ecstasy is far from this formula and contains little, if any, MDMA. However, the same effects are often felt through a mixture of other substances. Current day, street level ecstasy tends to contain some mixture of cocaine, LSD, heroin, amphetamines, methamphetamines, caffeine, rat poison, dog dewormer, and much more. Each maker or dealer places their own stamp on a small pill. This is almost a calling card for a particular dealer, area, or recipe and is usually something simple like an animal or symbol. However, even two pills with the same stamp could have different concentrations of the given ingredients as there is no testing for purity levels of illegal drugs. This is also what makes ecstasy so dangerous.
As mentioned ecstasy is often stamped as a way of tracking products and because of this it also carried many, many names when being sold and used. While E is the most common name, there are others that include but are no means limited to:
- Malcolm (X)
- Love Drug
- Egg Rolls
Along with the street names, there are terms related to using ecstasy that are common among teens and frequent uses. These include:
- Drop, Double Drop
If you have heard these terms then there is a strong chance that someone you know is using or has tried ecstasy or knows someone who has.
Signs of Use
If you are concerned someone you love is using ecstasy then knowing the signs can help. If you recognize the signs then you can start encouraging an open conversation and offer a push toward help. Although, until someone is ready to get help, rehab is largely unsuccessful. You can only be honest about your feelings and how the addiction has also hurt you and others to encourage the person to change their way of viewing the addiction. Common signs of ecstasy use include:
- Small colorful pills in a purse, bag, or pocket
- Colorful ‘candy necklaces’ some of which may be ecstasy
- Weird and irregular sleep patterns
- Lack of pain awareness
- Multiple sex partners (indiscriminate sex)
- Feelings of love for everyone
- Overheating due to dehydration
- Clenched jaw or teeth grinding (often people use a lollipop or pacifier to help this)
- High energy (dancing, talking, high stimulation)
- Overly stimulated by lights, music, or touch
As use continues or increases, you may also see signs such as:
- Anxiety and depression
- Limited cognitive ability
- Poor memory recall
- Brain damage (permanent)
Ultimately, with continued use, ecstasy abuse will lead to addiction that requires professional help. As your loved one receives help, they will go through a withdrawal period that will be explained below.
Withdrawal from Ecstasy
Withdrawal happens because a user’s brain becomes dependent on ecstasy. Ecstasy increases the neurotransmitter activity in the brain and causes a euphoric high and positive emotions that are false. The increase depletes the brain’s supply of the chemicals that are needed to feel this way naturally. This means when someone quits using ecstasy they go through withdrawal while their brain relearns how to work without the drug. This leads to depression, anxiety, and intense cravings. The effects of ecstasy withdrawal are mostly psychological in contradiction with most drugs where it is physical. There are aspects of use that can affect withdrawal that include:
- Tolerance that has been built
- The frequency of ecstasy use
- The duration of ecstasy use
- Age and gender
- Genetic predisposition to addiction
Any one or combination of these aspects can make withdrawal worse and allow it to last longer. The actual symptoms of withdrawal, however, are pretty universal and include things like:
- Depression and anxiety
- Agitation and paranoia
- Fatigue and insomnia
- Changes in self-perception
These may be paired with other physical symptoms depending on what was mixed into the ecstasy pills taken. It may be that a frequent user was also ingesting numerous other drugs and will have to detox and withdrawal from them as well. This occurs even if the person did not know they were taking other drugs.
As most ecstasy users are young, between 16 and 24, it is important to get help before further addiction or damage has been caused. If you or a loved one have an addiction to ecstasy or any drug then seek professional help as soon as possible. The River offers an in-patient treatment program for either 4 or 12 weeks in Asia. The top rated, luxury facility offers a unique approach to treating any type of addiction by getting back to nature. The organically designed rehab facility puts your life back in your hands while giving you the nourishment and sustenance you need to heal.
Confronting your present addiction can be tough and quite overwhelming, but it is possible with help. The River allows each person to heal psychologically and physically through activities, counseling, and proper nutrition as prepared from local, organic markets. The River promises to take each step in your journey with you as you understand what it is like to be human and exploring new ways of dealing with issues outside of drug use. When you or your loved one are ready to get the help you need and deserve, give The River a call to book a stay.