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What is Molly and how Does It Effect the Brain?

What is Molly?

Molly is a man-made illicit drug that is also known as ecstasy or MDMA. The drug first became popular among users who frequently visit clubs or raves.

However, now use of the drug has rapidly increased among individuals in every demographic subgroup. The National Survey on Drug Use and Health reported over 11 million individuals in the United States have used ecstasy at least once, while 28.6 million people are currently using illicit drugs.

One reason so many individuals use the drug is because many believe it is safer than other illegal drugs. The drug contains both psychedelic and stimulant properties, which results in feelings of stimulation and well-being. Furthermore, the drug can also cause users to have a distortion of time and sensory perception problems.

What Does Molly do to Your Brain?

Molly dangerously alters the brain by increasing activity in at least three chemical messengers of brain cells, which are known as neurotransmitters.

These neurotransmitters are serotonin, norepinephrine, and dopamine. The drug is an amphetamine, so it causes neurotransmitters to release from neurons, which results in the increase in neurotransmitter activity.

When the drug is compared to other stimulants, such as methamphetamine, it releases a greater amount of serotonin but less dopamine is released. The function of serotonin regulates emotions such as mood, appetite, sleep, and more.

What makes the drug so dangerous is the excess release of serotonin causes the brain to rapidly deplete the neurotransmitter, which results in a wide range of negative behavioral after-effects.

As a result, those who use the drug will experience the after-effects for several days after using. However, when individuals come down from the drug, it can cause a severe hangover.

How Long Does Molly Stay in Your System?

  • Blood: Molly can be detected in the blood for up to 24 hours after use
  • Urine: Molly can be detected in the urine for up to four days after use
  • Saliva: Your saliva can test positive for Molly for up to 48 hours after use
  • Hair: Molly can be detected in your hair for up to three months after use

Molly has a half -life of 8 hours, meaning that it usually takes about 8 hours for the body to get rid of half of the dose someone has taken. However, all in all, it can take up to 48 hours to rid the body of the full dose.

MDMA and its Effects on the Brain

Those who use Molly should also be aware that they may be taking other drugs that are sold as ecstasy. Furthermore, the use of MDMA may cause an individual to start using other drugs. This leads to further behavioral effects.

There have been several studies that have shown individuals who do not have behavioral problems before using the drug, will often have behavioral issues after long-term use.

Many individuals who use the drug are young adults. This makes it possible that females are at an increased risk for becoming pregnant because it acts as a powerful aphrodisiac. A developing fetus is in great danger when the mother uses, which can result in permanent damage to the fetus.

When the drug is inhaled, parachuted, or eaten, it results in changes in perception. These feelings are linked to an increase of cerebral blood flow in the frontal lobes of the brain.

In rare cases, use of the drug can be related to severe neurological problems that include:

  • Brain Hemorrhages
  • Intracranial Bleeding
  • Cerebral Infarction (restricting blood and oxygen to the brain).

This research also concludes use of the drug causes brain damage, not all of which can be reversed.

Studies on the Effects of Ecstasy

There have been numerous studies conducted on animals that have shown the drug can severely damage neurons that contain serotonin. It is suggested that the drug will have the same side effects on humans. Some side effects include:

  • High Blood Pressure
  • Faintness
  • Panic Attacks
  • Loss of Consciousness
  • Seizures

Other side effects include:

  • Depression
  • Confusion
  • Severe impairment of attention
  • Memory Loss

Users reported that they were not bothered by rejection because the drug produces feelings of positivity. This is because they are not able to properly process hostility from others.

Treatment for Molly & Ecstasy (MDMA)

If you or a loved one suffer from addiction to hallucinogens like Molly, treatment is just a phone call away. Understanding the underlying causes that trigger use is the first step to recovery.

Call or chat with a treatment specialist to get started with a personalized treatment plan. Northeast Addictions Treatment Center is on call 24/7.


The National Survey on Drug Use and Health –

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