Health Officials Caution Against Popular Misconception of ‘Pure’ Substance

Private drug rehab center, Cliffside Malibu has spoken in the press about the dangers of Molly and it’s casual references in current pop culture. Earlier in September, the New York Electric Zoo Festival was cut short due to two drug-related deaths. Unfortunately, these deaths are becoming more and more frequent from a drug called “molly,” a slang term for MDMA. Drug and law enforcement officials are working together to educate the public about the risks involved with synthesized drugs.
Molly is a crystalline “pure” form of the meth derivitive MDMA. The chemical make-up may resemble other volatile club drugs, but the danger is intensified by the reputation that molly is a pure substance. Users tend to disassociate it from other street drugs. But the seemingly innocent drug is cleverly masking the shady manufacturing process and the poor lab conditions in which it is made.
“(Suppliers) are making it look like something that is safe and easy to take, but in many cases, you’re playing Russian roulette,” said Drug Enforcement Administration spokesman Rusty Payne to CNN. “You have no idea the lab environment these chemicals or substances were produced in. If they knew where things were produced, they might think twice.”
Another problem for those taking the drug is the lack of clear side effects. Young people see what appears to be a low addiction rate and the apparent absence of withdrawal symptoms, likening the drug’s “harmlessness” to marijuana. What they don’t see are the well-documented adverse effects that will put them in the hospital or the morgue. It is all about the doses. When a user increases the dose over time, they have to expect negative effects, effects not obvious in a club setting. Also overdose happens frequently when doses are inaccurately measured based on a number of factors including variations in drug strength because of poor, illegal manufacturing processes and how it is mixed with other substances, such as alcohol.
Officials, doctors, and addiction treatment centers have tried to warn youth about the dangers. But they haven’t listened. Why? Perhaps because immediate dangers can be overstated.
“What we’ve done and what we consistently do is we include people that exaggerate the harms,” Carl Hart, an associate professor of psychology at Columbia University told reporters. “Kids are not listening because they’ve already had the experience. … They (think they) should reject everything we’re saying because we’re not being accurate, and they know it.”


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