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  • Plugging Ecstasy | Effects & Dangers Of MDMA Rectal Use

    Plugging Ecstasy | Effects & Dangers Of MDMA Rectal Use

    Plugging, butt chugging, and booty bumping are terms for taking drugs rectally. This method of ingestion is sometimes advocated as a harm reduction alternative to snorting or injecting hard drugs lik3 crystal meth.

    MDMA, also known as ecstasy or molly, can also be taken rectally. However, doing so introduces new health risks and can increase the severity of the body’s reaction to this unregulated and illegal drug.

    Effects Of Ecstasy/MDMA 

    3,4-methylenedioxy-methamphetamine (MDMA) is a synthetic (man-made) drug with some properties of stimulants like amphetamine and some properties of hallucinogens like LSD. 

    It’s produced as a crystalline powder that is most often pressed into colorful ecstasy pills or tablets, or used in liquid solutions.

    MDMA increases the activity of neurotransmitters in the brain, including dopamine, norepinephrine, and serotonin. These chemical messengers influence your energy/reward pathway, heart-rate/blood pressure, and mood/appetite/sexual feelings.  

    These effects last around three to six hours following a standard dose.

    Plugging Ecstasy

    In general, plugging does not cause vein trauma (from injection drug use), nasal damage (from snorting), or lung damage (from smoking).

    However, the vast majority of those use this drug orally in powder, pills, and capsules. But when a dose of MDMA is taken by mouth, the process of digestion lowers the bioavailability of the drug and slows down and lessens its overall effect.

    If MDMA is plugged, the drug avoids the digestive system and enters the bloodstream directly through the veins of the rectum. This increases total bioavailability, intensifying and shortening its effect.

    Side-Effects & Health Risks Of Plugging Ecstasy

    There is a misconception that plugging MDMA and other drugs is easier on the liver and rest of the body, as the drug enters the bloodstream without passing through the digestive system. But, this isn’t true.

    No matter the method of MDMA use, the drug is eventually filtered out by the liver and kidneys. Plugging only introduces a larger dose to the body faster, potentially increasing the stress on these organs.

    Short-Term Effects

    The short-term effects of plugging MDMA include a faster, more intense, and shorter-lived high than other methods of administration. Plugging can also cause adverse effects, especially given the difficulty of rectal use.

    Effects may include:

    • euphoria, confidence, and energy
    • increased body temperature, heart rate, breathing, and blood pressure
    • sweating, dehydration, and excessive thirst
    • nausea
    • jaw clenching and teeth grinding
    • tingling skin and muscle aches and pains
    • dilated pupils
    • loss of appetite
    • heightened senses
    • increased libido and diminished inhibitions
    • anxiety
    • hallucinations
    • irrational behavior

    MDMA Overdose

    Because rectal drug administration introduces the entire dose to the bloodstream very quickly, plugging MDMA increases the risk of overdose.

    Overdose symptoms can include:

    • seizures
    • vomiting
    • heatstroke
    • dangerously high blood pressure
    • dizziness
    • confusion
    • muscle twitches and cramps
    • heart palpitations
    • heart attack
    • stroke
    • kidney failure
    • dilutional hyponatremia, or a dangerous over-consumption of water

    Long-Term Risks

    Over the long term, plugging MDMA may cause health issues including:

    • liver and kidney damage
    • sleep disorders
    • reduced appetite
    • issues with memory or concentration
    • impulsive behavior
    • depression and inability to feel pleasure from natural sources
    • heart dysfunction
    • damage to membranes and other rectal tissues
    • persistent diarrhea
    • reduced blood circulation to the rectum
    • increased risk of developing hemorrhoids/piles
    • increased risk of sexually transmitted infection (STI) following anal sex

    MDMA Addiction Treatment

    Withdrawing from Ecstasy can cause depression, anxiety, fatigue, cognitive difficulties, and cravings that can make it hard to stop using the drug.

    If you or a loved one has developed an addiction to MDMA, professional treatment and counseling services are available to help you make positive changes and achieve long-term recovery.

    To learn more about our substance abuse treatment programs, contact us today.

    Written by Ark Behavioral Health Editorial Team
    ©2024 Ark National Holdings, LLC. | All Rights Reserved.
    This page does not provide medical advice.

    Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) - Drug Fact Sheet: Ecstasy/MDMA
    National Institute on Drug Abuse (NIDA) - MDMA (Ecstasy/Molly) DrugFacts
    San Francisco AIDS Foundation - How to Booty Bump Better

    Medically Reviewed by
    Davis Sugar, M.D.
    on July 10, 2022
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