Ever heard of the phrase “dancing with Molly?”

MDMA (3-4-methylenedioxymethampheta-mine), also known as Ecstasy or Molly, is a popular drug that commonly shows up at clubs, concerts, and raves. Although MDMA can produce intensely pleasurable sensations—including an enhanced sense of self-confidence and energy—it has extremely dangerous side effects that you and your friends should be aware of.

THE DOWNSIDE

This high does not fly alone. MDMA’s initial euphoria is often followed by an extreme low that sparks feelings of anxiety and depression. As if that weren’t enough of a downer, Molly can also give you nasty cases of chills, nausea, sweating, and blurred vision.

And the bad news doesn’t end there. Repeated MDMA use can cause a host of long-term effects, including imbalances of your mood, appetite, pain sensitivity, learning, and memory.

DO A LITTLE DANCE, HAVE A LITTLE SEIZURE

If your fellow concert-goers have been dancing non-stop for two hours, they might not be high on life.

MDMA often shows up at raves and music festivals, where the drug’s amphetamines give users the urge to dance for extended periods of time. But adding a megawatt stimulant like MDMA to a concert environment is a recipe for disaster.

Ecstasy interferes with your body’s temperature regulation and can cause severe dehydration and hyperthermia in hot, crowded places. The drug increases heart rate and blood pressure, which can lead to seizures and even death.

It’s a frighteningly simple formula: MDMA + stressful conditions = a hospital bed. Or worse.

WHAT TO DO IF YOUR FRIEND HAS A BAD EPISODE

If your friend is experiencing any side effects of Molly, remove him or her from any heat, noise, and bright lights. Give them a drink to sip, but keep them from chugging the whole bottle. Don’t leave them alone in case their condition worsens. If their symptoms include fever, shortness of breath, or unconsciousness, seek professional medical help right away.

A FINAL WORD OF WARNING

If the health risks aren’t enough to convince you to stay away from MDMA, then think about this: the Army tests Soldiers on a regular basis for exposure to the drug. Ingesting it in any form violates AR600-85 and the Uniform Code of Military Justice—two serious infractions that carry equally serious penalties.

Think twice before your buddy offers you MDMA. He may rant and “rave” that he’s never felt as good as when he’s high on Ecstasy, but the reward just isn’t worth the risk.

WANT MORE?

Check out the Army Substance Abuse Program (ASAP) for alcohol and drug guides, related laws and regulations and ASAP resources.

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