Ecstasy (MDMA) Triggers A Higher Level Of Empathy Than Other Drugs

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Ecstasy is one of the most common drugs in the world. Consumers are usually taking it for boosting euphoria and enhancing their sensitivity or sexual desires. Regularly dubbed as the “club drug,” ecstasy or MDMA is also behind many deaths, either due to overdose or some kind of adverse effect to the drug itself. However, a recent study showed that ecstasy (MDMA) triggers a higher level of empathy in its users than other drugs.

That was the conclusion at which the scientists of the University of Exeter have reached after comparing “the empathy levels of 25 people who used multiple drugs including MDMA, 19 people who used multiple drugs, not including MDMA, and 23 people who used alcohol only.”

“Users of MDMA reported feeling much more empathy – and were better at identifying the emotions of others on a computer task – than people who took multiple drugs, not including MDMA. The other drugs were cannabis, cocaine, and ketamine. MDMA (3,4-Methylenedioxymethamphetamine, also known as ecstasy) is known to increase empathy for a short period, and these findings of longer-term effects could have implications for possible medical uses,” News Medical reported.

Ecstasy (MDMA) Triggers A Higher Level Of Empathy Than Other Drugs

“We recruited long-term but mild users (a minimum of ten times), to reflect doses that may be used for medical purposes. It has been suggested that MDMA, combined with therapy, might be an effective treatment for psychological trauma and alcoholism, but it has previously been suggested that MDMA may cause heightened social distress,” explained Molly Carlyle, a scientist at the University of Exeter, and the study’s leading author.

“Our findings indicate that isn’t the case in our study, MDMA users were better able to understand the emotions of others and had better emotional empathy than people using other drugs, and on a similar level to those who only drink alcohol,” the researcher added.

According to the new ecstasy (MDMA) study concluded that:

  • MDMA users reported feeling significantly greater emotional empathy, and computer tasks revealed greater cognitive empathy, compared to people who used multiple drugs, not including MDMA (there was little difference between the MDMA group and the alcohol-only group).
  • All participants showed declines in mood and self-esteem in response to social exclusion, but there were no differences between the three groups.
  • The levels of empathy and social pain in MDMA users were consistent with “normal psychosocial functioning.
Vadim Ioan Caraiman

Vadim is a passionate writer on various topics but especially on stuff related to health, technology, and science. Therefore, for Great Lakes Ledger, Vadim will cover health and Sci&Tech news.