Also known as MDMA (3,4-Methylenedioxymethamphetamine), ecstasy is a potent stimulant primarily used for recreational purposes. Sold both in tablet and crystal form, ecstasy alters a person’s mood and awareness of their surroundings (perception). It’s chemically similar to both stimulants and hallucinogens, producing side effects like increased energy, pleasure, emotional warmth, and distorted sensory and time perception. Our Pennsylvania rehab offers ecstasy detox to individuals who have become physically and psychologically dependent on the drug, providing a safe and medicated form of treatment to reduce withdrawals and discomfort.
How Ecstasy Works
Ecstasy works by increasing the activity of three major chemicals in the brain: dopamine, norepinephrine, and serotonin. Dopamine increases energy levels and acts in the reward system to reinforce pleasurable behaviors, such as drug use. Norepinephrine increases heart rate and blood pressure, which are particularly risky for individuals with heart conditions or blood vessel issues.
Additionally, serotonin affects mood, appetite, sleep, and other functions. It also triggers hormones that impact sexual arousal and trust, increasing the likelihood of risky sexual behavior. The release of large amounts of serotonin is mainly responsible for emotional closeness, elevated mood, and increased empathy in users.
Other common side effects are nausea, vomiting, muscle cramping, involuntary teeth clenching, blurred vision, chills, and sweating. These side effects usually last anywhere from 3 to 6 hours, although users may take additional doses as the effects of the first begin to fade. Additional side effects that may occur include irritability, impulsiveness, aggression, sleep problems, severe dehydration, and others.
Ecstasy Withdrawal Symptoms
Ecstasy is both physically and psychologically addictive, and those dependent on this drug will experience withdrawal when they quit using it suddenly or try to cut back. Ecstasy withdrawal is caused by the development of physical dependence, which refers to the body’s need for ecstasy to function normally.
This is common among long-term users, as the brain becomes accustomed to the drug’s impact on chemical function. Taking ecstasy increases the activity of certain neurotransmitters and, in doing so, also depletes the brain’s supply of these chemicals. Over time, the brain relies on the drug to function normally.
Ecstasy (MDMA) detox can produce serious psychological symptoms, and some users may experience physical discomfort, as well. However, the psychological withdrawal symptoms of ecstasy are more severe and life-threatening than the physical ones.
Common MDMA withdrawal symptoms include:
- Changes in self-perception
- Difficulty concentrating
- Loss of appetite
- Memory problems
It’s also important to note that ecstasy is often cut with heroin, ketamine, amphetamines, and other illicit drugs. In many cases, MDMA is also taken alongside other drugs, such as marijuana, cocaine, or LSD. Because it’s hard to know what ecstasy is made of and so many users combine it with other substances, withdrawal symptoms are often unpredictable and vary in intensity and nature.
Due to the varying nature of these symptoms, it’s important for individuals who are dependent on ecstasy to undergo medically-supervised detox for ecstasy abuse. Our detox in PA is led by a medical staff of doctors, nurses, and clinical specialists to ensure that our clients safely recover from withdrawals.
How to Detox From MDMA (Ecstasy)
Managing the withdrawal symptoms of ecstasy – especially the feelings of depression and suicidal thoughts common to this process – can be challenging for a person to do without help. It’s recommended that users complete the withdrawal process in a medically supervised detox center, such as our drug rehab in Pennsylvania.
Medical detox is offered in various inpatient and outpatient treatment centers. During this process, physicians monitor the user as they undergo withdrawal symptoms to ensure they’re safe and as comfortable as possible. Our doctors may administer detox medications to ease some of the discomforts caused by withdrawals.
As we previously mentioned, ecstasy is often cut with other drugs, meaning withdrawals can be unpredictable. During medical detoxification, not only are our doctors there to monitor the patient’s progress, but they are also there to intervene if symptoms become too severe. Our ecstasy detox program is the safest way for users to achieve sobriety.
Start Ecstasy Addiction Treatment Today
Our Northeast addictions treatment center provides a safe, controlled environment in which users can work toward recovery. Our addiction treatment in Pennsylvania is offered based on each patient’s individual needs, ensuring they receive the best care possible.