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What Is Molly?



We sat down with Jerry Otero, parent support specialist at the Partnership for Drug-Free Kids’s Parents Toll-Free Helpline, to find out what “Molly” is and what it means for kids and parents.

Q: What is Molly?

A:Molly,” is the powder or crystal form of MDMA, which is the chemical used in Ecstasy. Some claim that Molly is less dangerous than other illegal drugs because it’s not physically addictive, more pure than other forms of ecstasy and will not cause cognitive impairment as it doesn’t kill brain cells. The reality, however, is that the use of Molly – a stimulant drug – comes with serious health risks. The DEA notes that it can cause confusion, anxiety, depression, paranoia, sleep problems and drug craving.

Q: What are some of the health risks for my child?

A:  Health risks can include anything from involuntary teeth clenching, a loss of inhibitions, transfixion on sights and sounds, nausea, blurred vision and chills and/or sweating. More serious risks can even include increased heart rate and blood pressure and seizures.

According to CNN, Molly has been a popular drug at music festivals this year. This is perhaps the most hazardous of settings, because when combined with the hot crowded conditions, intake of MDMA can lead to severe dehydration and dramatic increases in body temperature. This, in turn, can lead to muscle breakdown and kidney, liver and cardiovascular failure.

An additional risk of taking Molly is the potential of it being “cut” or mixed with other harmful substances by someone else, despite claims of it being pure.

I advise parents to know the facts, talk with their kids and don’t take the use of Molly lightly.


Related Content:

Ecstasy- Drug Guide

“Molly,” Powder or Crystal Form of MDMA, is Popular at Music Festivals

Experts: People Who Think They Are Taking “Molly” Don’t Know What They’re Getting

Commentary: Molly- What You Need to Know

17 Responses to this article

  1. Avatar of Linda
    Linda / September 28, 2013 at 8:56 am

    A littl comment about some above statements… I am a recovering drug user and I personally can tell you I did drugs to cover up childhood trauma. I was sexually abused by my father. It helped me escape. There is NO minimizing drug use!! Marijuana is a gate way drug to many others!! Anything drug used long enough will become habit forming. Don’t minimize and justify drugs with your children. Be honest and to the point!!

  2. Avatar of becca
    becca / September 20, 2013 at 12:17 am

    H ronestly there will never be a medical use for this believe that it has medicinal properties is just ridiculous.although widely used recreationally it does destroy brain cells.anytime you alter yourself with any drug you destroy brain cells.the best way to derail your children from ever trying this drug is to have an open communication relationship with them.don’t just tell them its dangerous.that’s what’s most attractive about it.try to see things from their perspective and openly talk to them like aduults.if they are old enough to experiment then they can handle adult conversation

  3. Avatar of nikki
    nikki / August 12, 2013 at 2:20 am

    This is why parents need to have talks wirh their kids about drugs. Explain that if you’re going to do something, do something that doesn’t kill and has even been proven to have benefits like marijuana. Dont give me that shit about blah blah blah pots bad, its federally illegal. Open your eyes people. Id rather have my kid smoke pot than od on coke or get alcohol poisoning. The worst thing they’d do while high is eat all the food.

  4. Avatar of Stacy Belisle
    Stacy Belisle / August 8, 2013 at 4:07 pm

    James, thank you for the informative information. I would as a treatment counselor to help family find help for loved ones in addiction. I am amazed at how many people believe that Molly is Ecstasy and minor in the realm of health hazards. I often find myself explaining that any substance taken into the human system is a toxin and can be dangerous or fatal. Thanks for sharing the study from South Florida.

  5. Avatar of James N. Hall
    James N. Hall / August 2, 2013 at 6:23 pm

    While some drugs sold as Molly might be MDMA or contain some MDMA in combination with other drugs, at least in South Florida over 400 samples of drugs called Mollys had no MDMA but contained the now illegal, former “bath salt,” methylone (or bk- 3,4 methylenedioxy-methcathinone). Continuing the worldwide myth that Molly is pure MDMA or Ecstasy only masks a new way to sell now illegal bath salts and lures users into a false sense that they know what they are taking.
    James Hall, Epidemiologist
    Center for Applied Research on Substances Use and Health Disparities
    Nova Southeastern University

  6. Avatar of Julie
    Julie / August 15, 2013 at 8:29 am

    I’d rather my kid didn’t do anything at all. I’ve never had a dui, never been addicted to drugs, and grew up around a lot of alcoholism. This also tells me that when teens use drugs today, then they will be okay with their own children doing it, in the future. So that guarantees two generations of drug addiction. What is so horrible about your life, that you do this? Are you starving to death in Darfur? Are you in the sex slave human traffiking trade? Or are you just plain and simple bored? Why is your self-esteem so low, that you need to bring yourself even lower? Why can’t you have fun without drugs? If someone needs drugs to be interesting, then they must be pretty boring to start with.

  7. Daniel / August 17, 2013 at 12:10 pm

    MDMA HAS been proven to be helpful. It can be used to tread PTSD and help in marriage counseling.

  8. Avatar of Aimee
    Aimee / September 23, 2013 at 12:28 am

    I very much agree with you Nikki

  9. Avatar of alberto
    alberto / September 27, 2013 at 1:53 am

    yes i totally agree with you 100% there still hope for my kids generation as long as there people who think like you

  10. Avatar of Daniel
    Daniel / August 17, 2013 at 12:08 pm

    M1 has never been sold as a bath salt, m1 is simply not what the makers of bath salts are looking for. Generally, bath salts contain MPV and a few years ago, would contain methcathinone. Bath salts tend to be speedy, as they try to emulate and methamphetamine high.However, despite the structural similarity between methylone and Methcathinone, they are completely different drugs that work on completely different receptors. Many people cannot distinguish between MDMA and Methylone,

  11. Avatar of Missi
    Missi / November 13, 2013 at 11:55 am

    Thank you for this clarification. This resource should be edited, as I am sure it is viewed as a credible source for drug information. False information is worse than no information. “Molly” is rarely pure MDMA.

    Missi Wooldridge, MPH
    Executive Director, DanceSafe

  12. Avatar of Corey
    Corey / August 26, 2013 at 8:05 pm

    As well as highly addictive and sometimes fatale.
    Don’t perpetuate the myth that drugs like these are all rainbows and sunshine.
    R.I.P Donnie

  13. Avatar of Kim
    Kim / September 1, 2013 at 1:29 am


    I am sad that you believe the reason ANYONE would use drugs is because their life is awful. I’m not trying to be mean, I just have seen and know from past experience that there are a million different reasons why people use and or get severally addicted. For most it is not intentional and the best way to keep your kids safe is be smart and informed from ones who have experienced all the awful negative side effects. But please don’t judge those that have been through it. Be grateful they did so you can learn from them why not to use.

  14. Avatar of Big Daddy
    Big Daddy / October 4, 2013 at 6:52 am

    I do use drugs but not for recreational use. I am disabled and no kidding I feel the need to “escape” from feeling trapped in my body that does not work. I agree I wish I never had to take anything in my body that didn’t help build it up in some ways. The info is key. But the “cause” of the problem is that the current HS/college gen. does not trust the information coming from the US gov. because of all the lies about pure pharmaceutical LSD, MDMA etc. No different than when my generation was told that Pot was as bad for you as heroin or speed.

  15. Avatar of veronica m
    veronica m / September 21, 2013 at 12:57 pm

    I agree with JULIE… I as well grew up around alcoholic family and was sexually abused. However I didn’t grow up to be an alcoholic or a sexual abuser against anyone , I decided to break that cycle with me . So we all have choices . We have a choice to live without using and abusing drugs, alcohol and not be sexual aggressors . No matter what the situation one lives in . I am by no means any perfect or better than anyone else . But whatever my life is today is what I made it be . Yes sometimes we don’t have complete control of some life situations but that doesn’t mean we look into making it worse by making more mistakes ,

  16. Big Daddy / October 4, 2013 at 7:45 am

    NO medical use for pure MDMA. Please do some research from scientific journals such as Nature. Pay attention to the dose per unit of body weight in the studies. Water is dangerous also. I have seen many people die of over hydration (drinking too much water) not something that easy to do, you would think, huh?

  17. Occam's Razor / October 4, 2013 at 7:54 am

    Your opinion that MDMA will never have any medical uses is based on what?

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