Wednesday, October 18th, 2017

Your brain on Molly

December 18, 2012 by  
Filed under Molly

Your brain on Molly

Your brain on Molly

Molly is the street name for the drug MDMA. MDMA is also the main ingredient in ecstasy, but ecstasy is usually “cut” with other drugs, while Molly is pure MDMA.

Your brain on Molly: How Molly Works in The Brain

Molly affects the brain by increasing the activity of at least three neurotransmitters (the chemical messengers of brain cells): serotonin, dopamine, and norepinephrine. When you take Molly, you generally get feelings of euphoria, a heightened sense of intimacy and pleasure, and decreased anxiety because of the effects on these neurotransmitters. The peak effects of molly drug use are felt 60 to 90 minutes after ingestion and last for two to four hours, followed by a gradual comedown.

Your brain on Molly: After Effects

In general, molly is not physically addictive. The main addiction potential of molly is psychological addiction. Because of its effects on the neurotransmitters in the brain, molly can cause feelings of depression and drug craving when molly use is stopped.

Your brain on Molly: Serotonin

Serotonin is a neurotransmitter that affects mood, sleep, pain, emotion, appetite, and other behaviors. The increase of serotonin is what causes the feeling of happiness and excitement when your brain is on Molly. However, molly use depletes the serotonin in your brain, so the next day you often feel anxious, depressed, and tired. Over time, Molly can damage serotonin-containing neurons; some of these studies have shown these effects to be long-lasting. Molly users experience long lasting confusion, depression, and selective impairment of working memory and attention processes.

Your brain on Molly: Who is affected?

Factors such as gender, dosage, frequency and intensity of use, age at which use began, the use of other drugs, as well as genetic and environmental factors all play a role in some of the cognitive deficits that result from Molly. When you use molly with other drugs, it increases the chance that you will have long term effects from your brain on Molly. Also, when you do molly more frequently for a longer period of time, you are likely to have more long lasting effects from your brain on Molly.

Your brain on Molly: Holes in the brain?

For a long time, people believed that Molly was a lot more hazardous than it actually is. In September 2002, an article by scientist George Ricaurte was published in Science magazine. The article outlined the severe neurotoxic of MDMA on dopaminergic neurons, producing what looked like “holes” in the brain and causing Parkinson’s-like symptoms in users. The report spread like wildfire, being cited in a number of media publications.

However, the article was later retracted, with scientists admitting that the monkeys were given methamphetamines, not MDMA, and the journal was criticized for publishing an article that was clearly meant to be used as a political scare tactic. Unfortunately, the retraction did not garner as much publicity as the original article, so many in the general public still believe that Molly will “eat holes in your brain.”


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