What is MDMA?
Methylenedioxymethamphetamine (MDMA), commonly referred to as ecstasy or molly, is a synthetic club drug found in tablets, capsules, and powder. MDMA stimulates the release of serotonin, dopamine, and norepinephrine in the brain resulting in euphoria, increased energy, and empathy accompanied by anxiety, confusion, paranoia, and restlessness. Like its close chemical cousin, methamphetamine, MDMA is a powerful central nervous system stimulant with many effects on the body and brain.
MDMA is popular among young adults, especially in club scenes and electronic music festivals. Despite its reputation as a relatively harmless “party drug,” MDMA can be addictive due to repeated substance use.
People who use MDMA recreationally report feeling an overwhelming feeling of euphoria, closeness with others, and a restless sense of frantic energy. This can quickly lead to addiction, which can cause long-term structural brain changes that make it difficult for people to stop using on their own.
People with MDMA addiction often face severe side effects when they suddenly stop MDMA use and may return to active substance use before completing the withdrawal stage. Fortunately, MDMA detox can provide targeted relief for people suffering from MDMA withdrawal symptoms.
Consequences of MDMA addiction
Drug dependency is a serious condition with varying levels of intensity and impact. Ecstacy addiction can lead to long-term health issues and a host of negative consequences, including:
- Chronic fatigue
- Changes in brain chemistry
- Memory loss
- Lack of motivation
- Impaired decision making
- Cardiac issues
- High blood pressure
- Weight loss
- Sleep disruption
- Intense cravings when the drug’s effects wear off
- Loss of interest in things you used to enjoy
- Problems at work, school, or in your home life
- Worsening mental health symptoms
Many people will also experience large personality and behavioral shifts due to their drug abuse. This could include beginning to lie about their activities to families and friends, stealing money to purchase drugs, or having sudden mood swings that were never apparent before.
MDMA abuse can also have major repercussions on personal relationships, as they are often the first to suffer when someone abuses drugs. Many people addicted to MDMA will isolate themselves from their friends and family, pushing away those who care about them in pursuit of a high.
Fortunately, there is a variety of treatments and coping strategies available to help people struggling with MDMA addiction. From medical detox to inpatient rehab, therapy, and support groups, MDMA users can find the guidance they need to break free from their addiction and achieve lasting recovery.
MDMA Withdrawal Symptoms
One of the most difficult aspects of overcoming MDMA addiction is the experience of debilitating withdrawal symptoms. Ecstasy withdrawal symptoms result from the structural changes in the brain of a person who frequently uses MDMA. Withdrawal can include both physical and psychological symptoms but are generally more psychological than those of other substances such as opioids or benzodiazepines.
MDMA withdrawal symptoms vary depending on the severity of use and addiction. Compared to other drugs, the physical effects of ecstasy or molly withdrawal are mild and not life-threatening, but the psychological symptoms can be intense. Common MDMA or molly withdrawal symptoms include:
- Memory loss
- Memory problems
- Difficulty concentrating
People who suffer from severe MDMA addiction after prolonged use may experience more intense symptoms such as increased anxiety, paranoia, and suicidal ideation in addition to physical symptoms, which include:
- Nausea and vomiting
- Muscle aches and pains
- High blood pressure
- Rapid heart rate
- Heart palpitations
These symptoms will often begin within the first 24 hours after last use and peak within 48-72 hours before beginning to decline. Long-term effects of MDMA use can include:
- Memory loss
- Sleep problems
Many of these psychological symptoms can last several weeks or months, but with the right care and support, symptoms can be managed, and those struggling with ecstasy addiction can make a full recovery.
The causes of ecstasy withdrawal symptoms
MDMA ecstasy withdrawal results from the body’s reaction to suddenly stopping the release of large amounts of serotonin, dopamine, and norepinephrine. These neurotransmitters regulate mood, sleep, energy levels, appetite, concentration, and fear responses. When MDMA use ends abruptly, these neurotransmitter levels drop, which can cause physical and psychological withdrawal symptoms.
In addition, those who abuse MDMA long-term are at risk of changing their brain chemistry and structure. This can lead to permanent memory problems and cognitive deficits that may contribute to the severity of withdrawal symptoms.
Ecstasy withdrawal timeline
The timeline of MDMA ecstasy withdrawal depends on the severity and length of the addiction. Generally, withdrawal symptoms will begin to appear within 6-10 hours after the last use, then peak within 3-4 days. The most common symptoms users typically experience include depression, anxiety, intense cravings, fatigue, and insomnia.
Although these symptoms can be difficult to manage, support from a professional addiction treatment center in a safe and controlled environment can help people stay on track and cope with the physical and psychological symptoms of withdrawal. Trying to overcome MDMA abuse on your own can be dangerous and difficult and put you at an increased risk of relapse. Fortunately, there are several treatment options available for MDMA addiction that can help individuals achieve lasting recovery.
MDMA Detox and Drug Abuse Treatment
If you or a loved one is struggling with an ecstasy addiction, our residential detox facility offers drug addiction treatment, medically assisted detox, and mental health services to help you on your recovery journey.
Ecstasy Detox Process
The ecstasy detox process at Gloria Rehab and Detox Center begins with a medical evaluation and assessment by a licensed healthcare professional. During this evaluation, we determine the proper care for your unique situation based on factors such as your medical history and current physical health status to create a personalized detox plan. This plan will focus on mitigating the effects of MDMA withdrawal while also providing support and comfort during the withdrawal process.
The duration of detox depends on the individual’s level of use but typically lasts between 5-14 days. During this time, individuals will be provided with medications to help manage cravings and withdrawal symptoms such as depression, anxiety, and insomnia.
How MDMA detox can help
MDMA detox is the first step for many people looking to gain control of their addiction and start on the path to long-term sobriety. Medically assisted detox helps reduce withdrawal symptoms and manage cravings with prescribed medications, allowing individuals to focus on overcoming the psychological aspects of MDMA addiction.
Medical detox brings together a host of medical and addiction professionals working together to ensure that people withdrawing from ecstasy find tangible relief. Targeted medications can alleviate many of the most severe ecstasy withdrawal symptoms and help people to rest and recover in a safe environment.
During MDMA detox, patients are medically monitored 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. Treatment providers pay careful attention to the symptoms of withdrawal and have several treatments and therapies available that can help people feel more comfortable during this phase of recovery.
Once ecstasy detox is complete, individuals will be ready to move on to the next step in recovery: residential treatment. In this setting, individuals learn more about their addiction and develop the skills needed to prevent relapse and maintain sobriety.
Is it time to detox from ecstasy?
Ecstacy abuse and withdrawal look different for everyone. If you’re still on the fence about attending an addiction treatment center for ecstasy abuse, here are some signs it may be time. If you answer yes to any of the following statements, it may be time to seek quality care from a treatment center:
- I’ve been using more ecstasy than usual
- My relationships, work, and/or social life have suffered due to my ecstasy use
- I’ve tried to stop using ecstasy but can’t seem to quit
- I feel like I need to take MDMA to get through the day
- I’ve started using other drugs to offset the effects of ecstasy
- I feel like I have lost control over my MDMA use
- I’m experiencing negative physical or mental changes due to my ecstasy use
If you feel overwhelmed by your ecstasy drug use and can relate to any of these statements, it may be time to reach out for help from a professional treatment team. The experienced addiction specialists at our Los Angeles drug and alcohol detox center are here to answer any questions you may have and help guide you through the recovery process. Contact us today at (818) 659-9444 for more information about how we can help you or your loved one.
Drug Rehab in Los Angeles for Substance Abuse
Take the first step toward professional help for drug and alcohol use disorder by calling our drug rehab in Los Angeles, CA, at (818) 659-9444. Our drug treatment and detoxification services can help you or your loved one safely and effectively achieve sustainable recovery. If you’re ready to begin living everyday life free of a substance use disorder, contact Gloria Rehab today to begin your journey.
Our rehab center accepts most private health insurance plans and some public health policies. A professional treatment provider on our team is available to work with your insurance provider to assist you in navigating your insurance coverage to minimize any out-of-pocket expenses. If you don’t have insurance coverage, we can help you learn what treatment options are available to you or your loved one.