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Ecstasy: How The Drug Works

It's hard to believe that Ecstasy was once a legal drug used to help control an individual's appetite. Because of the addicting and dangerous side effects of Ecstasy, it became illegal in the 1980's. Ecstasy is a stimulant drug that improves one's mood and well-being. Ecstasy is very popular among teenagers and college students, and the abuse of Ecstasy is on the rise.

Ecstasy: How Is It Used?

Ecstasy is usually taken in pill form, although it has been known to be snorted or injected with a needle. The trademark look of an Ecstasy tablet typically includes a picture or engraving, sometimes of popular icons or symbols. This gives it an almost innocent, child-like look as if it were just another type of candy or sweet. However, the effects of Ecstasy are anything but innocent or child-like. Individuals, especially teens, should become educated and knowledgeable on the extreme side effects of Ecstasy and stay away from this very addicting, often deadly, drug.

Ecstasy: Teen Drug Abuse

Teens and college students find Ecstasy so appealing because of its calming, blissful effect. The euphoric high lasts usually for three to four hours, in which during those hours, individuals experience a relaxed physical and mental state where they feel exhilarated and invincible. High school and college students especially feel that at times they "deserve" to take momentary breaks from reality and all of their hard school work and social pressures, and so with a little bit of peer pressure, they indulge in the harmful drug to escape reality just for a little while. The truth is, after individuals come down from the Ecstasy high, they feel the let-down and other harmful effects that the drug so often brings. The negative physical effects include:

  • nausea
  • cold chills
  • sweating
  • blurred vision
  • increase of heart rate and blood pressure
  • stroke
  • coma or death

The mental effects can be just as devastating as the physical effects. Mental effects of Ecstasy use include:

  • severe depression or sadness
  • paranoia
  • anxiety
  • aggression and/or anger
  • confusion
  • hallucinating

Also, because the use of Ecstasy involves altering the body's serotonin levels, it has been found that Ecstasy can affect brain function and cause serious brain damage.

Ecstasy: Parents Helping Teens

It is important for parents to become educated on Ecstasy and its harmful, deadly effects. Parents have the responsibility of teaching their children about all drugs and how drugs, like Ecstasy, can literally take over and ruin one's life. If a parent suspects that their teen is, in fact, using Ecstasy, intervention and treatment are imperative. There is so much help and support that can be offered to someone struggling with an Ecstasy addiction. Residential treatment, group and/or individual counseling, and drug-therapy are all example of treatments that can help an individual overcome their Ecstasy addiction. Although treatment and the withdrawal process are not always easy, a person on Ecstasy is literally saving their life if they will let go of the drug and move forward with the recovery process.

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