Ecstasy may be the cure for millions of people who suffer from post-traumatic disorders. No! We are not talking about the elevation of mind here. If only it were that simple!
According to Maariv Daily, doctors at the Beer-Yakov psychiatric hospital, south of Tel Aviv, have just begun new tests using the drug Ecstasy as a treatment for conflict-linked post-traumatic stress disorders (PTSD.)
Ecstasy or MDMA (3-4-methylenedioxymethampheta-mine) is a synthetic drug that was classified as a stimulant and made illegal in 1985, and was given the same status as that of narcotic drugs such as cocaine, heroin and LSD, as it was found to be one of the most dangerous drugs.
This is a drug that is made from a synthetic chemical derived from the oil of the sassafras tree. It was first introduced to the world in 1914 and at that time was used as an appetite suppressant. Later it gained in popularity and was available at all street corners and was used as a psychotherapeutic tool.
In spite of it being officially banned, it is still widely available and used at places such as raves, concerts, hip hop parties and other gatherings, by both the young and old, as it produces a hallucinogenic effect that takes people in to their dream world.
Users of Ecstasy also report that it produces an extreme sense of pleasure and gives increased energy and self-confidence. It has the capacity to make people feel peaceful and develop a feeling of closeness with others, as well as a desire to touch others. It is said to be completely different from other drugs of the same genre because it creates feelings of empathy, understanding and acceptance towards others.
Doctors believe the drug’s calming and stimulating effects could have the potential to not only help patients overcome trauma, but also to dominate it. Researchers have already gained government approval for testing the response to Ecstasy.
The newspaper also revealed that they have started the tests with MDMA (active ingredient in Ecstasy,) on the troops who suffered from post-traumatic stress disorder after a month long war that pitted the Israeli reserve troops against Lebanon’s Hezbollah Shiite militia in the months of July and August of 2006.
This drug reduces the feelings of fear and anxiety and induces self confidence, and MDMA has also been said to have consistent emotional effects when compared to many other psychedelics. Researchers who are leading this experiment, Rakefet Rodrigues, Sergio Marchiveski and Marina Kaufchicz, are very sure that these patients can be helped with psychotherapy and Ecstasy can cure them.
With the drug Ecstasy having such a controversial past, with the once approved status being withdrawn by the FDA, people are waiting to see the results of this research and in spite of all the misgivings and the skepticism, there is a hope somewhere that this could in fact prove to be helpful to all those people with post traumatic stress disorder (PTSD,) who deserve to lead better lives.