The Dangers of Ecstasy Withdrawal

One of the most popular party drugs on the social scene today is MDMA (or ecstasy). Although this drug reached record high in popularity in the 1980’s, it remains a noticeable force in society today. Although it may seem like a fairly harmless “one-and-done” party drug, ecstasy is highly addictive and can often result in abuse. Many users become dependent and need treatment from a formal rehab facility in order to recover.

As with any other addictive substance, the recovery time for ecstasy can be extremely difficult. An article by Mental Health Daily (MHD) lists several of the symptoms specific to MDMA withdrawal, and what occurs during detox. According to this article, most of the “psychological symptoms of ecstasy withdrawal have to do with serotonin levels being depleted.”

Medical News Today explains that this chemical found in the human body affects “mood and social behavior, appetite and digestion, sleep, memory and sexual desire and function.” Thus, low levels of serotonin negatively affect these processes, while higher levels improve them. The use of stimulants boosts serotonin levels temporarily giving a “false high.”

When users in drug rehab are no longer experiencing this effect, their bodies are forced to adjust. The process feels exhausting both physically and mentally as the brain and vital organs stabilize. This is why detox programs are so difficult — but so vital.

Some of the side effects of detoxing from ecstasy include confusion, paranoia, delusions, hallucinations and fatigue. “The lethargy may be overwhelming initially and you may find yourself sleeping or tired on a consistent basis,” said MHD.

Without the proper care and attention, many people feel unable to complete a detox program on their own. Drug rehab centers help users come down safely, and maintain sobriety.

It’s also common to experience insomnia, loss of appetite and depression during withdrawal. MHD states that you might not feel like yourself for a while during this process “because your brain chemicals are out of homeostasis.”

Addiction Blog notes that when users switch from frequent use to a cold turkey approach, more serious symptoms can occur such as liver damage, renal failure, convulsions and hypothermia. This is why supervision within a drug rehab during detox can be so crucial.

Ecstasy takes two to four days to leave the body, but residual mental and physical ailments experienced during a detox can increase recovery time dramatically. Depending on the frequency of use, users may experience harsher symptoms and require medical attention.

While ecstasy dependency may not be as common as other illicit drugs or alcohol, it still occurs, and it’s not pretty.

Emily Culp is a health writer reporter for Fusion 360, an SEO and content marketing agency. Information provided by Odyssey House. Follow on Twitter