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Molly Addiction: Can I Get Addicted to Ecstasy?

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Medically Reviewed By: Diana Vo, LMFT

September 13, 2023 (Originally Published)

December 7, 2023 (Last Updated)

Table of Contents

Molly (MDMA) is a potentially addictive synthetic drug with stimulant and hallucinogenic effects. Although it was previously used in psychological treatment and ongoing research explores its potential benefits, molly is not currently approved for medical use in the United States.

Molly gained popularity among young people in club settings due to its ability to enhance sociability, empathy, euphoria, and hallucinogenic experiences. The DEA (United States Drug Enforcement Administration) categorizes MDMA as a Schedule I controlled substance, indicating its lack of recognized medicinal purposes and high potential for abuse and physical dependence. 

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If you or someone that you know is using molly and you are concerned about molly addiction or related issues, read on to learn:

  • Can Molly be addictive?
  • Is Molly addicting when used occasionally?
  • What are the main dangers of molly?
  • Addicted to Molly: connect with addiction treatment in Southern California.

What is Molly?

Molly is considered a purer form of MDMA (3,4 methylenedioxymethamphetamine). Molly is also known as ecstasy, the love drug, or the hug drug. Functioning as both a stimulant and a hallucinogenic, molly can induce a euphoric high and heightened energy, while at the same time altering perception.

When using molly, the body releases increased amounts of oxytocin (the love hormone), cortisol (the stress hormone associated with fight-or-flight responses), and testosterone. Although molly can foster warm, affectionate feelings, it might also intensify stress, amplifying negative emotions like to the unpredictability associated with LSD.

Originally developed in 1912 for potential medical applications in controlling bleeding, MDMA was employed as a psychiatric aid during the 1970s and 1980s to facilitate communication and self-awareness. Simultaneously, its popularity surged in recreational circles. However, its legal status abruptly changed in 1985 when the DEA classified MDMA as a Schedule I controlled substance, prohibiting its use.

Is molly addictive, then?

a woman has her hands on her head to represent addiction to molly

How Addictive is Molly?

Molly triggers the activation of similar brain chemicals – dopamine, norepinephrine, and serotonin – as other drugs of abuse. Molly addiction is clinically described as Other Hallucinogen Use Disorder in American Psychiatric Association’s DSM-5-TR, a tool used by mental health professionals for diagnosing mental and substance use disorders.

If you are concerned about addiction to molly, answer the following questions concerning your use of the drug molly in the past 12 months:

  1. Have you persisted in molly use despite facing social or relationship issues stemming from your drug use?
  2. Have you continued using molly even when aware that it worsens psychological or physical problems?
  3. Have you experienced cravings for Molly?
  4. Have you neglected your obligations in school, work, or home due to molly use?
  5. Have you reduced normal activities due to molly consumption?
  6. Have you attempted to cut down on molly use but struggled to do so?
  7. Do you invest substantial time in obtaining, using, and recovering from molly?
  8. Have you noticed an increase in molly consumption beyond your original intention?
  9. Do you require more molly than before to achieve the same effects?
  10. Do you use molly in risky situations like operating machinery or driving?

These indicators help assess the presence of potential addiction to molly and emphasize the need for seeking professional guidance if these behaviors and patterns resonate.

Molly Withdrawal Symptoms

Withdrawal from molly can vary in intensity and duration based on factors such as frequency of use, dosage, and individual differences. While not as pronounced as withdrawal from certain substances, MDMA withdrawal can still lead to several challenging symptoms, such as:

  • Depression: Feelings of sadness, hopelessness, and a lack of interest in activities that were once enjoyable.
  • Fatigue: Profound tiredness and lack of energy, often accompanied by disrupted sleep patterns.
  • Anxiety: Increased nervousness, restlessness, and feelings of unease.
  • Mood swings: Rapid shifts in emotions, from euphoria to irritability and back.
  • Difficulty concentrating: Trouble focusing and maintaining attention on tasks.
  • Cravings: Intense desires to use molly again in order to recreate the pleasurable effects.
  • Decreased appetite: Reduced interest in eating, which might lead to weight loss.
  • Insomnia: Difficulty falling asleep or staying asleep, leading to sleep disturbances.


Can you get addicted to Molly?

Yes, although molly is not considered as addictive as some other drugs, it can still lead to psychological dependence in some individuals due to its effects on mood and pleasure centers in the brain. Regular use can increase the risk of addiction and associated negative consequences.

Is molly and ecstasy the same thing?

Molly and ecstasy both refer to MDMA (3,4-methylenedioxymethamphetamine), a synthetic psychoactive drug that alters mood and perception. However, molly is often marketed as a purer form of MDMA, while ecstasy typically refers to MDMA mixed with other substances. The distinction between the two can be unclear and inconsistent.

Is Molly an opioid?

No, Molly is not an opioid. It belongs to a different class of drugs known as empathogens or entactogens. MDMA primarily affects serotonin levels in the brain, leading to altered mood, increased empathy, and sensory perception changes. Opioids, on the other hand, interact with opioid receptors in the brain to relieve pain and induce feelings of relaxation and euphoria.

Treatment for Molly Withdrawal

Managing withdrawal from Molly involves addressing both the physical and psychological aspects of the process. While molly withdrawal is typically not as intense as withdrawal from certain other substances, seeking professional support can assist in alleviating discomfort and promoting a safe recovery.

Medical monitoring

A medical professional can monitor your health and well-being during the withdrawal process, ensuring that any potential complications are identified and managed promptly.

Supportive therapy

Engaging in individual therapy, counseling, or support groups can help address the psychological aspects of withdrawal, such as mood swings, depression, and cravings.

Healthy lifestyle

Practicing good nutrition, staying hydrated, and getting regular exercise can contribute to a more balanced mood and overall well-being during withdrawal. Prioritizing proper sleep and rest can aid in managing fatigue and mood disturbances.

Gradual reduction

In some cases, a gradual reduction in molly use under medical supervision might help minimize withdrawal symptoms.

Mindfulness and stress management

Techniques such as mindfulness, meditation, and relaxation exercises can help individuals cope with anxiety and stress during withdrawal.

Avoid triggers

Identifying and avoiding triggers that might prompt cravings for molly can support the recovery process.

Professional guidance

Consulting with a healthcare provider, therapist, or addiction specialist can provide tailored advice and strategies for managing molly withdrawal.

Approach molly withdrawal with patience and the understanding that professional guidance can significantly ease the process. While the withdrawal symptoms might not be as severe as those associated with other substances, seeking support ensures a safer and more comfortable transition to a drug-free state.

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Detox From Molly at Renaissance Recovery     

If you require assistance detoxing from drugs like molly, we can help you at Renaissance Recovery near Huntington Beach, CA.

After withdrawing from MDMA under medical supervision, you can transition into one of the following treatment programs at our beachside facility:

All treatment programs blend holistic and science-backed therapies that may include:

When you are ready to move beyond the grip of club drugs like molly, call admissions at 866.330.9449.



At Renaissance Recovery our goal is to provide evidence-based treatment to as many individuals as possible. Give us a call today to verify your insurance coverage or to learn more about paying for addiction treatment.

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Joseph Gilmore has been in the addiction industry for three years with experience working for facilities all across the country. Connect with Joe on LinkedIn.

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