What is it?
Ecstasy was invented in a lab by a scientist working with the same chemical structures found in methamphetamine, a powerful and dangerous mind-altering drug. At one time, the drug was used by psychotherapists, before they realized that the drug experience was not easily controlled and was mind-altering.
What does it look like?
Ecstasy is usually a tablet or capsule often with a symbol printed on it, and occasionally come as a powder.
Who takes it?
People from all walks of life use Ecstasy, including young people. It's especially popular on the rave circuit. In 1998, 5.6 percent of 12th-graders, 4.4 percent of 10th-graders, and 1.7 percent of 8th-graders reported they had used Ecstasy in the past year. Monitoring the Future, 1975-1999
What does it do?
Some believe that ecstasy lowers your inhibitions, breaks down barriers between friends, enhances feelings of love and affection.
In reality, Ecstasy has some not so great effects. Ecstasy's effects on the brain can include confusion, depression, sleep problems, anxiety, and paranoia. These effects can sometimes continue after taking the drug. Physical effects can include muscle tension, involuntary teeth-clenching,nausea, blurred vision, faintness, and chills or sweating.
The stimulant effects of the drug, which enable the user to dance for extended periods, combined with the hot, crowded conditions usually found at raves can lead to dehydration, hypothermia, and heart or kidney failure. Another problem with ecstasy is people often mix drugs while taking it, leading to a bunch of unexpected effects.