Ecstasy is the generic name for 3-4-Methylenedioxymethamphetamine, otherwise called as MDMA. It is one of the easiest illegal drugs to obtain, hence, it also considered as one of the most dangerous drugs, especially among the young.
The effects of MDMA is nothing different from those of amphetamines and hallucinogens, but often, the drug is regarded as more dangerous since it is available almost anywhere. It is very popular at social events, such as raves, hip hop parties, concerts, et cetera. And for this, it has acquired its nickname, “social drug.”
A “legalized” form of MDMA that is beginning to gain popularity is herbal ecstasy. The term “herbal” comes from the fact that herbal ecstasy is derived from the Chinese herbal plant, Ma Huang or Ephedra. Ma Huang has been used in China for 2000 years to treat breathing problems. The plant contains rich concentrations of the substance, ephedrine, which is one of the main ingredients used in making amphetamines.
Aside from ephedrine, herbal ecstasy contains pseudoephedrine and caffeine from yet another herb, kola nut. The street names for herbal ecstasy include Cloud 9, Herbal Bliss, Ritual Spirit, Herbal X, and GWM. It may also be called Rave Energy, Ultimate Xphoria, and X.
Herbal ecstasy is commonly sold in tablet form or pills. Herbal ecstasy pills come in small packets covered in colorful packaging. The label promises to “increase energy, inner visions, sexual sensations, and cosmic consciousness.”
As pills, herbal ecstasy is swallowed, with or without water. They may also be snorted or smoked.
The key ingredient in herbal ecstasy, ephedrine is a stimulant like caffeine. It increases heart rate by stimulating the cardiovascular and central nervous system. Basically, this herbal drug has the same effects as other “uppers”, that is, substances that stimulate the body’s organs to act faster or quicker than normal. Like MMDA, this herbal drug can speed up the heart and central nervous system.
Herbal ecstasy can cause harmful reactions in people with high blood pressure, heart disease, diabetes, and other conditions. It has been linked to many cases of strokes, and even death. People who are sensitive to ephedrine can suffer from heart attacks, strokes, and seizures when taking the drug.
In 1996, the FDA has received various reports of at least 15 deaths and 395 illnesses that are associated with the use of herbal ecstasy. Alarmed by the number of cases, they issued a warning against its use on April 10 of that year. The herbal drug is said to cause adverse reactions, including liver failure, elevated blood pressure, strokes, and death.
TOTAL WORD COUNT – 434
KEYWORDS “Herbal Ecstasy” – 11 (density = 2.5%)