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Ecstasy, Its Origins and Effects on Body and Mind


The largest province in Canada is Quebec. It is not in isolation in the fight against drug abuse. Young people engage themselves in drug abuse due to various reasons. It may include peer pressure, to deal with pain, rejection, low self-esteem, curiosity and as a way of having fun. It may seem ok to be intoxicated. Signs of drug use slowly start to emerge when an addict starts using drugs. As they become addicts, it is easy to identify them.

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At the beginning, signs of involvement in drug abuse can include changes in eating habits, sleep patterns, behavioral patterns. An individual may withdraw from his or her usual friends. They may be secretive in their dealings and withdraw from public (Buddy 2). Physically they might lose weight, have dilated pupils, running nose and headaches. If they are students, their school grades may drop and they may start having discipline issues. Young adults are also in the list of those who use MDMA. Addicts get access to MDMA in nightclubs and dance parties where the youth frequent to have fun. Most fall prey to it without knowing. Their friend in the clubs or parties introduces them to it.

This project aims to inform the young people on the effects of the drug MDMA on the brain and the body. This will help them not to indulge into drug abuse. The youth will find solace in other activities like sport, camping and reading literature and novel (NIDA for Teens 4). There are those that may question why the drugs exist in the first place. Scientists use them as part of components in medicine that save lives. The purpose is to share this information with the young people so they can pass it on to their friends. This will educate many people eventually (National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke 12).

MDMA stands for; 3, 4 methylenedioxymethamphetamine. MDMA also goes by the name ecstasy. Most ecstasy pills contain MDMA. Ecstasy pills attract the youth due to colorful packaging; this makes it attractive to the youth. MDMA causes an individual to feel emotionally warm, euphoric, and energetic. It distorts the thought process and perception of an individual. At times, they lose the sense of time.

Effects on the brain

MDMA affects the neurons in the human brain. Neurons use serotonin to coordinate or communicate in the brain. Serotonin helps regulate a number of functions in the brain. These include aggression, sensitivity, sleep, and mood changes. MDMA attaches itself to the serotonin transporter; this makes it hard to terminate signals between neurons. In turn, this prolongs the signals sent by the neurons (Royal Canadian Mounted Police 19). MDMA chemical composition is alike to that of the serotonin. When it attaches itself to the transporter, it causes excessive generation of serotonin. MDMA is toxic to the neurons. It causes the release of excessive hormones that are detrimental to the body’s function.

Effect on the body

Effects of excessive consumption of MDMA can be lethal. The physical effects are similar to those experienced on use of other drugs like cocaine and marijuana. Persons using the MDMA may have permanent brain damage or suffer from mental illnesses. This drug can cause an increase in the heartbeat, which eventually leads to high blood pressure and heart complications. Another severe effect of MDMA is that it alters the ability of the body to self-regulate the body temperature. An addict may have sudden changes in body temperature, which may be fatal. A person may experience kidney and cardiovascular failure.

The use of MDMA can lead to hypothermia. As an addict takes the drug, they may feel the urge to drink a lot of water due to dehydration. The excessive intake of water lowers the sodium levels in the blood. This can cause a swelling in the brain (Clark, Clarke, and Doug 27).

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There are short-term effects that may last up to five hours. These include decrease in stress, fear, and mental euphoria. An addict may feel that they can socialize more freely and have excessive courage. They feel safe and comfortable. MDMA also causes nausea, blurred vision, excessive chilling effect, muscle tension. Individual using the drug may experience involuntary teeth clenching. The changing eating habits may cause weight loss. There may be loss of sleep, urine retention, hallucination, distortion of thinking and memory loss. An addict can stay for a long time without knowledge of place and time lapse. This is the feeling of escapism that attracts most young people (Clear Haven Center 3).

A person feels more attractive and pleasant. It is like being in another world and space. What the addict is not aware of is that the drug has long-term effects that are harmful to the body. When deprived of the drugs, addicts show withdrawal symptoms. They may include nausea, chills, hallucinations, gross tremor, and seizures. An addict may engage in crime just to find money to quench the urge for the drug. The more the addict uses it the more he may want to use the drug. The drug slows and delays responses, so one may intake a lot without realizing they have taken a large amount (Addington 2).

Origins of MDMA

MDMA surfaced in 1912 under the scientific name Methylsafrylamin. MDMA originated in a pharmaceutical chemical company, Merck. It was part of a chemical composition of some drug. MDMA had adverse side effects that excluded it from the drug composition. Over the years, MDMA was unheard of until it surfaced in the 1950s and 1970s. This was in research conducted by several scientists. In the 1980s, in the US some individuals used it as a relaxer. In nightclubs, MDMA sold by the name Adams. It is from there that it spread to UK and the other areas in Europe (Narconon International 3).


MDMA is a lethal drug. Every individual who values his or her life should avoid it. Many youth get lost in this world of fantasy. Some students turn to drug abuse and others end up in lives of crime. This is to sustain their income to purchase drugs. They may end up in jail, dying from crime and others from drug related illnesses. The main introductory addiction is alcohol. It opens avenues for the youth to experiment on other hard drugs that have a lasting effect.

Parents should watch out for symptoms of drug abuse and address them before it is too late (The Good drugs guide 7). In schools, the teachers can also aid in concerns on dropping grades and indiscipline. It is also the responsibility of an individual to work on self-discipline and socialize in the right company to avoid falling victim (The origin of MDMA 26). It is also vital to address the key reasons that drive youth in to drug abuse. Some may feel left out or have low self-esteem. There are those who may be from broken families trying to cope with the stress or neglect by their guardians. Having addressed the cause of the problem with information, there can be a significant reduction in drug abuse (Chudler 1).


Addington. Treatment Centre Inc. 2009. Web.

Buddy T. Basic Facts About Ecstasy (MDMA). 2010. Web.

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Chudler, Eric. Neuroscience for kids. 2010. Web.

Clark, Tom, Clarke Carl, & Doug Richards. The human brain and its disorders. 2010. Web.

Clear Haven Center. Signs of ecstasy use. 2011. Web.

Narconon International. Rehabilitation centers in Canada. 2011. Web.

National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke. Brain Basics: Know Your Brain. 2010. Web.

NIDA for Teens. The science behind drug abuse. 2011. Web.

Royal Canadian Mounted Police. What parents need to know about drugs. 2008. Web.

The Good Drugs Guide. Ecstasy effects. 2012. Web.

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The Origin of MDMA. Separate the facts from myth. 2006. Web.

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