Signs of Ecstasy Addiction
The signs of ecstasy addiction are sometimes hard to detect as the synthetic stimulant acts on the neurotransmitters in the brain that are responsible for controlling mood; as the drug floods the users brain with the "feel good" chemical serotonin, ecstasy can leave the user feeling happy, calm and relaxed. There is a high price to be paid for the brief sense of contentment that is derived from using ecstasy; although the synthetic stimulant is not considered to be physically addictive, the way that the stimulant affects neurotransmitters in the brain has been reported to fuel ecstasy addiction.
It is no wonder that ecstasy addiction is rampant throughout areas of the United States; a government survey that was conducted in 2009 indicated that over 710,000 people were aged 12 and over had reported using the drug within the past 30 days prior to taking the survey. Drug rehab centers across the U.S. are being flooded with calls from loved ones that are concerned about noticing signs of ecstasy addiction in someone that they care about; when an addiction to the powerful synthetic stimulant is not addressed, the consequences could potentially be fatal.
What Causes Ecstasy Addiction
Ecstasy addiction occurs because using the stimulant causes the brain to be flooded with serotonin; unfortunately, using up the serotonin that is reserved in the brain will eventually create a deficiency of the neurotransmitter as the drug begins to leave the users system. With the chronic and prolonged use of ecstasy, the brain will detect the overabundance of serotonin and will begin to scale back the natural production of this "feel good" chemical; although the effects of ecstasy are only temporarily, people who use the drug regularly will often begin to experience withdrawal-induced episodes of depression. Between the euphoria that the drug produces and the impact that this stimulant is reported to have on the reward centers in the brain, these particular effects will often work in unison to create a strong psychological addiction to ecstasy.
Another reason that ecstasy use can be addictive is because most of the pills that are sold do not only contain MDMA; in many instances, manufacturers add cheap substances like amphetamines as fillers. Many of these various different types of filler drugs may have their own physically addictive properties; thus contributing to an ecstasy addiction when MDMA is taken frequently in high doses. Ecstasy addiction is also fueled by users taking the stimulant in combination with alcohol or other types of similar drugs; the most popular drugs that are reported to be used with ecstasy are marijuana, meth, cocaine and ketamine.
Signs of Ecstasy Addiction
Impaired thinking and memory problems-are some of the most obvious signs that points to a potential ecstasy addiction problem; proof of this is that people who reported using MDMA regularly for a long period of time actually scored much lower on tests that were related to cognitive thinking and memory. Many reputable studies that have been conducted by major universities throughout the U.S. have reported that animals that were exposed to ecstasy for as little as several days had experienced damage to communication terminals that produced the neurotransmitter serotonin for several years after this brief period of exposure.
Exhibiting extreme irritability and appearing to by jittery- are some of physical signs of an ecstasy addiction problem that loved ones may notice. Because MDMA is a drug that has stimulant properties, users will often report experiencing bursts of energy that make them feel unusually nervous and irritable; additionally, many ecstasy users have also reported that they experienced a physical fight or flight response that is sometimes accompanied by a racing pulse.
Attending all night dance parties- is one of the signs that could be pointing to an ecstasy addiction problem; one of the most obvious venues where the synthetic stimulant is available is reported to be at "raves", which are drug fueled parties that can sometimes last for days. When a person begins to schedule their lives around these types of events, it is a red flag that they are in danger of developing an ecstasy addiction.
Weight Loss-is among some of the most obvious signs of ecstasy addiction; most people are unaware that the synthetic stimulant was initially developed to help people lose weight. The drug was originally advertised as an appetite suppressant, although MDMA was not ever used in mainstream medicine for this particular purpose.
Teeth grinding and jaw clenching-are two of the most common signs of ecstasy addiction; unfortunately, these side effects that are related to MDMA use can cause extensive damage to the users teeth. The reason that an ecstasy user begins to grind their teeth is because of the involuntary muscular activity that is associated with the use of the powerful synthetic stimulant; muscles in the lower face have been reported to be especially prone to this type of muscular activity, often resulting in an intense amount of teeth grinding and jaw clenching.
Exhibiting happiness that borders on euphoria- This is one of the overt signs of ecstasy addiction; users report feeling positive about themselves and about the world around them. People who use MDMA report feeling less inhibited and will often feel a much closer emotional bond with others. Many ecstasy users report that their they feel much more comfortable in their own skin when they use ecstasy, and that even communicating with strangers becomes easier for them when they are under the influence of the drug. In general, using ecstasy creates a sense of general well being, as the effects of the drug unlock feelings that would otherwise remain in check.
Depression-is one of the most obvious signs of ecstasy addiction; although most MDMA users will only experience this in the days that are immediately following ecstasy use. Many individuals who attend raves will attribute the lethargy when coming down from ecstasy to being tired from spending so many hours on the dance floor; however, depression-related fatigue has also been shown to be common in people who use ecstasy at home.