If the phrase “moon rocks” conjures up images of the astronomical body that’s 238,900 miles into space and orbits the earth every 27 days, then you’re more likely an astronomy buff than someone who uses recreational drugs or frequents raves and music festivals.
While most of these come in the form of either a pressed pill, gel capsule or powder forms, “moon rocks” are a crystal derivative of MDMA synthesis.
The allure surrounding these crystals are that they are pure MDMA, uncut with other drugs, like methamphetamines, heroin or any number of dangerous synthetic opioids or “bath salts”.
How “Moon Rocks” Work On The Brain
Methylenedioxymethamphetamine or, as it’s normally referred to, MDMA, floods the brain with serotonin and dopamine, which brings on intense feelings of euphoria, intimacy and, at the same time, lowers any sense of social anxiety. Depending on what MDMA is cut with, it can also heighten and alter sensory perception, making it a favorite on the all-night electronic dance scene and music festivals.
How “Moon Rocks” Are Taken
The cloudy, brown or yellowish “moon rocks”, are broken into smaller pieces and ingested by allowing them to dissolve on the tongue. The MDMA is absorbed into the bloodstream and the euphoric effects take anywhere from a half-hour to an hour before kicking in.
The length of the “high” varies depending on the amount an individual takes, how often they do the drug and whether or not they’ve built up a tolerance. Regardless of their purity, “moon rocks”, like any other drug are not necessarily safe.
Carissa Cornwell of DanceSafe, a nonprofit that sets up drug-testing booths at some music festivals, makes the point in an interview with L.A. Weekly that, “Everyone is different and you never know how you’re going to react. Even “moon rocks” could be mistaken for other things, specifically meth.”
Some of the potential side effects of MDMA can include:
- Dehydration and hyperthermia, where the body overheats and is potentially deadly if not treated
- Nausea, vomiting and diarrhea
- Anxiety and depression, which often sets in a day or two after use because the brain is shorts on levels of serotonin and dopamine
Like rocks from the actual moon, “moon rocks” are relatively rare, though, for completely different reasons, obviously. Dealers make more money by taking MDMA and crushing the crystals, cutting them with other substances and selling them in pill, capsule or powder form.
MDMA As a Therapeutic Tool
MDMA (moon rocks), is listed as a schedule I narcotic, a classification the Federal Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) gives to substances that are considered, in the government’s opinion, to have “no currently accepted medical use and a high potential for abuse.”
That said, MDMA, most especially in its purest form – “moon rocks” – is an empathic drug that some psychiatrists believe is useful for therapy. Just last year, the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) approved an MDMA drug trial for people suffering from post-traumatic stress disorder. Meanwhile, in the UK, Imperial College, London, started the world’s first trial of MDMA for the treatment of alcoholism.
“We know that MDMA works really well in helping people who have suffered trauma and it helps to build empathy,” Dr. Ben Sessa told The Guardian. A clinical psychiatrist and researcher in the trial, Sessa added, “Many of my patients who are alcoholics have suffered some sort of trauma in their past and this plays a role in their addiction.”
Street Names for MDMA
In the world of recreational drug use, MDMA various forms of MDMA go by street names, such as:
Abstinence from drug use is always the safest best, but in lieu of that, testing-kits for MDMA are available online. While the research varies on whether or not pure MDMA, aka “moon rocks,” is addictive, the National Institute on Drug Abuse is an excellent resource on the regular and long-term dangers of MDMA abuse.
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