What is ecstasy/MDMA?
Ecstasy (pill version) and MDMA (powder version) have been commonly used on the party scene for many years. Even though many people still take the drug, its quality has decreased significantly in the past 20 years. Despite some major campaigns in the 90s, ecstasy is far less harmful than many other drugs used on the scene, the most dangerous thing that is likely to happen to you when you are high on ecstasy is hugging your friend for too long. Ecstasy is probably used for dancing more than for sex. Ecstasy usually causes users to feel more intense and experience stronger feelings of passion, love and excitement. It increases the sensation experienced from listening to music and intensifies the senses, especially touch, sound and colour.

How does ecstasy/MDMA affect my health?
Even though ecstasy is more of a dance drug, some people also use it for sex. It tends to loosen your sexual inhibitions, making you more likely to have unprotected sex. Ecstasy can also sometimes make it hard for users to get hard and sustain a hardon which makes some people take a combination of Viagra and ecstasy. Because of the euphoric effect that ecstasy causes, if you are on HIV-medication, you could get lost in the high and forget to take your medication. Some users may experience paranoia and anxiety attacks when 'coming up' and depression and tiredness for a number of days when 'coming down'. There have been cases where bad batches of ecstasy, usually made from impure ingredients, have caused serious problems.

Can I mix ecstasy/MDMA with alcohol and other drugs?
People often mix ecstasy with other drugs and alcohol, some without any side effects. It is still important to be aware that some dangers do exist when combining too many powerful drugs together, adding extra strain to the heart and brain. If you combine ecstasy or MDMA with alcohol there is a chance of dehydrating, so this combination should be avoided. Smoking marijuana can mellow the rushes and help bring on the high effect of ecstasy. It can also help with the comedown effect. Taking too many chemicals is strenuous to your body, so pace yourself, know your limits and don’t overdo it.

Is ecstasy/MDMA illegal?
Ecstasy is an illegal drug and it is a punishable offence to possess, supply and reproduce it.

What else is ecstasy/MDMA known as?
Street names of ecstasy include E, pills, XTC, disco biscuits, disco tricks, Smarties, tablets, yokes, Mitsubishis and snowballs.

What do I need to know if I am planning to take ecstasy/MDMA?
If you are going to take ecstasy or MDMA try not to drink alcohol or mix it with other uppers like cocaine or Meow Meow, as that will add extra strain on your heart and brain. Drinking alcohol while on E can leave you dehydrated. It’s advisable to drink non-alcoholic beverages including fruit juices or sports drinks during regular intervals in order to avoid overheating or dehydrating. This is particularly important if you are dancing for a lengthy period of time. Not all ecstasy pills contain MDMA and some may contain other substances, therefore you cannot be 100% sure how your body will react, so pace yourself. Sometimes the high doesn’t hit you until 30-60 minutes after you’ve popped the pill so wait a bit before taking another one.

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