Ecstasy/ MDMA: What is it?
Ecstasy is a man-made drug which was originally developed in 1912 by a large pharmaceutical company and in its pure form is known as MDMA. In the 1950s it was used by the American army in psychological warfare tests and then in the 1960s found a use as a psychotherapy medication to ‘lower inhibitions.’
During the 1980s and with the advent of the dance music scene it became touted as the new ‘love drug’ and the best thing to keep you dancing all night. In many countries it was legal until 1985 when it was banned due to safety concerns.
Since this time Ecstasy, like many street drugs, has been produced in illegal laboratories meaning that often the drug that is sold contains very little MDMA. MDMA itself can have many harmful side effects but today a wide range of other substances are added including things like LSD, amphetamine, methamphetamine, rat poison, caffeine and dog deworming tablets.
What are the effects of Ecstasy addiction?
Ecstasy is a drug which is not commonly associated with addiction but like any mind or mood altering substances it can produce this result. Most users report feelings of happiness and contentment because the drug encourages the release of dopamine and serotonin in the brain. Serotonin regulates mood, sex drive, sleep, pain and appetite. Often, when the effects wear off, the user is left feeling depressed and agitated because the use of the drug has drained the natural serotonin from the brain.
Short term effects include:
Impaired Judgement and False Sense of Affection
Faintness, Chills and Sweating
Over time, the more of the drug that is used the more difficult the ‘come down’ becomes and often this is the user’s reason for either taking more or using other drugs to ease the feelings.
Long term effects of ecstasy addiction include:
Damage to Memory and Cognitive Function
Psychological dependency develops because of the nature of the high, which can be energetic and stimulating yet causes the user to feel relaxed and peaceful with an overwhelming love and empathy towards others. Physical dependency is created when the brain becomes so depleted of serotonin that more and more of the drug is needed, not only to make the user feel happy but to make them feel just ok. Most users only take these drugs recreationally and infrequently, however others use in an addictive pattern that can include frequent bingeing, concurrent use of other drugs and engaging in high risk behaviours.
Withdrawal at Seasons Bali
Withdrawal symptoms will vary in duration and intensity depending on the individual, the severity of the addiction and the frequency of use. The main symptoms can include depression, fatigue and irritability. Clinical staff do a comprehensive evaluation of residents over the phone prior to arrival and then, once the client arrives at Seasons Bali, our expert medical team complete a further assessment to determine any detox required. The doctor may prescribe a tapered regime of prescription medication over a few days to ensure the resident is comfortable and not distressed during their withdrawal period. Detox is performed onsite under very strict conditions and staff monitor withdrawal symptoms closely. Our well trained case managers, all of whom are in recovery themselves, also prove excellent support during this phase of the treatment process.
Ecstasy Addiction Treatment at Seasons Bali
Our accomplished addiction treatment program at Seasons Bali takes a well-rounded approach to the physical, mental, emotional, spiritual and social aspects of the problems that are faced by our clients. The varied schedule includes group work, one on one counselling sessions, art therapy, drama therapy, yoga, beach exercise and educational groups.
This schedule is delivered within a therapeutic community model and tackles the underlying causes of addiction so that durable, continuing recovery is possible.
Seasons Bali is staffed by a qualified and experienced clinical team who are all in recovery themselves. This means that they really understand what residents are going through and can provide them with positive examples of former addicts living successful and happy drug-free lives. Additionally, to support the healing process, the program is delivered in an environment of luxury with housekeeping provided and all in-house meals cooked by our skilled and dedicated chef.
Treatment programs can be 28, 60 or 90 days in length with ongoing aftercare available including outpatient options and on-going counselling. Our affordability, ideal location and high success rate make us an international destination of choice for addiction treatment.