Friday, September 6, 2013

Along Came Molly: 5 Things Every Parent Should Know About the Latest Teen Drug Trend

By Shayla Perry

Meet “Molly,” one of the most popular recreational drugs being used by teens today. What do you, as a parent, need to know about this dangerous trend? What is molly? A pure form of 3, 4-Methylenedioxymethamphetamine (MDMA), the drug in Ecstasy, molly—also known as Mandy, Misty, Legal X, or Legal E—is making a resurgence since its early rave days, quickly becoming the drug of choice among young people in the United States. Making its way from the club to the suburbs, a recent survey of 1,500 students at Virginia Commonwealth University reported that 15% of the student body admitted to using TFMPP in the last 30 days, which seems to be in line with the national average. Marketed as a “safer” alternative to Ecstasy and glorified by celebs like Kanye West and Madonna, part of the allure of molly is its purity. But like most drugs that are in high demand, cheap reproductions are being made from household chemicals, making the substance and its side effects even more dangerous, especially to uninformed teens who can suffer permanent and irreversible damage to their brains, hearts, kidneys, and other vital organs, all for a 30-minute high. Not only is molly extremely hazardous, but according to Jeffrey Reynolds, Ph.D., and Executive Director of the Long Island Council on Alcoholism and Drug Dependence, it’s also highly addictive. “Our local hospitals have seen an upswing in emergency room visits related to molly, and we’re seeing more [people] getting addicted to the drug in a short amount of time,” Reynolds tells MommyNoire, noting that more girls than boys are experimenting with molly, usually in conjunction with alcohol. Molly Drug Facts 1. Molly is often seen as a white or off-white powder, or in the form of a pill. The pills are sometimes imprinted with logos, symbols, or letters. 2. The substance is usually taken with benzylpiperazine (BZP) and/or alcohol to increase the hallucinogenic effect. 3. Molly users initially experience feelings of euphoria and extreme energy. After the high, molly can produce several behavioral and psychiatric symptoms, which can include everything from agitation and panic attacks to self-mutilation, profound depression, psychosis, and violent behavior. The drug also causes physical reactions like heart attacks, strokes, seizures, respiratory distress, and in some cases, death. If inhaled, molly can produce rashes and sores on the skin. 4. Accidental overdose is common with molly, as users take several doses to try to achieve a hallucinogenic effect similar to those achieved by using ecstasy. 5. Because it’s a Schedule I drug, molly possession can come with legal consequences similar to the ones for cocaine and heroin. Talking to Your Teen About Molly As parents, it’s often difficult to broach certain subjects with our children. When is the right time? How young is too young? But given the rise in popularity of Molly, the time to talk to your teen about the drug and its dangers is now. “They all know about it. They’re talking about it, and a fair amount of young people are experimenting with it,” Reynolds explains. When talking to your teen about Molly, Reynolds encourages parents to keep the conversation light, starting by asking them if they’ve ever heard about the drug or know of anyone who’s tried it, gauging their general knowledge of the substance. Stress the dangers of drug use as well as the potential hazards related to Molly, specifically, being sure to include drinking in the conversation, as most encounters with the drug usually begin with alcohol. Even if your teen isn’t using the drug, chances are, they know someone who is, so arming them with the information they need can still save a life. After all, one of the most powerful forms of prevention against drug and alcohol use is knowledge. Sources:, NBC, - See more at:

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