Oh yes, and please don’t buy your first pill off a stranger at a festival. DOSE LOW: Start low, go slow and don’t re-dose for at least 2-3 hours. Less than half of first time users reported taking a test dose.
Because some MDMA pills contain 3-4 x time as much as most people (especially first-time users) would like/need in single dose (75-100mg), we suggest starting with a quarter and to see how you go. With powder a crystal can look like it contains nothing, but once weighed and crushed it might be 250mg which is way too much for a first-time dose (or any other time dose come to think of it). Getting your dose weighed up is the best thing to do. It can take anywhere from 30-90 minutes to come up (even longer for a hard-pressed pill or if you have a full stomach), so don’t re-dose for at least 3 hours. That first small dose may only give you milder introduction to what the effect of MDMA can be like, but taking it cautiously first time will help to reduce the risk of unwanted potentially negative effects and feeling sick and confused. Re-dosing too early or with taking too big a dose initially are common mistakes among novice users.
MDMA lasts 4-6 hours and redosing too early can lead to anxiety rather than increased pleasure. If you don’t get any feeling from your pill after an hour or 2 – don’t take another one. The chances are the drug you took is not MDMA – you don’t know what it is and redosing might increase the risks of overdosing on a dangerous drug like PMMA. SAFE SPACE AND TRAVELS: Make sure you are in a familiar and safe place, don’t drive / cycle and avoid cliffs, pools, ponds and other big bodies of water. Familiarity with your environments can provide reassurance when other things appear very strange. Because MDMA can also alter your sense of time, space and coordination it can be easy to accidentally hurt yourself if you misjudge your footing (for example if you’re high up near a window or cliff edge). Staying (physically) on solid ground while your mind wonders is a good tip. And don’t drive or cycle – both can be really risky under the influence of MDMA. If you need to move – walking (or dancing) is the way to go. BE A PLANT – WELL WATERED: Stay well hydrated, avoid alcohol and keep cool. MDMA (like alcohol) can dehydrate you and if you’re off your head, you might forget to drink. MDMA can also make if difficult or not important to pee. If your clubbing or at a festival where the sun is shining (so probably not in the UK), dehydration and overheating are genuine risks. Drink a glass of water (or juice/other non-alcoholic drink) and if you feel too hot take some time out – and ask a mate to go with you with you. Signs of dehydration include feeling dizzy and faint, but don’t drink too much water either since very rarely (usually in combination with not peeing) this can lead to lowering of salt levels in your body. Then stop dancing, get out of the sun, loosen any tight clothing and chill. If you feel unwell – either in mind or body – then tell a mate or look for first aid nearby. Don’t drive or cycle, both can be really risky under the influence of MDMA. BE HAPPY: Feel physically and emotional well, and happy in yourself. Like most drugs MDMA will tend to lead your brain in the direction it was pointing before you took the drug. Niggling doubts, worries or fear can become amplified. The time to try MDMA for the first time is when you feel well, settled and happy in yourself (and in the presence of those you are sharing the experience with). Although currently being explored for its therapeutic potential (within clinical settings), MDMA can worsen many conditions like depression and anxiety. Avoid MDMA if you are on medication for epilepsy or are on psychiatric or heart medication.
BE FREE: Make sure you don’t have any commitments coming up in the next day or so. Although most people feel pretty much back to normal within 24 hours of taking MDMA, some people do get bad comedowns normally kicking in 1-2 days following day of use. Knowing you have nothing to do in the next few days can be reassuring during your drug experience and give you a bit more internal comfort space. Remember MDMA can make it difficult to sleep and in the days afterwards you may feel tired and a bit emotional. TELL SOMEONE: If you feel unwell, tell someone and seek help.
Feeling a little sick ( or even throwing up) can be a normal part of the MDMA experience, when you are coming up. It passes quickly and shouldn’t be a cause of worry. Feeling a bit sweaty and noticing your heart racing can also be part of a normal MDMA experience, like feeling more talkative and emotionally attached to those around you. But feeling anxious, very restless, really hot, confused or being unable to communicate clearly are not and might signal somethings up.