MDMA Harm Reduction – avoid dehydration

Take care not to dehydrate

Dehydration is when the body has lost too much moisture. It can make you feel very ill and if it keeps getting worse, and nothing is done about it, it can lead to death. MDMA is a dehydration risk because it speeds the heart up, and makes you feel energetic (so you move about more. Both of these things make you sweat. Sweating is loss of moisture from the body.

Signs of overheating and heatstroke are: feeling very hot, but not sweating; needing to pee but not being able to; feeling ill; extreme thirst

To prevent dehydration:

  • Drink sips of water regularly throughout the time that you’re using (about 500ml per hour)
  • If you’re thirsty, drink soft drinks or water, not alcohol – alcohol causes dehydration itself; it never helps or prevents it!
  • Don’t drink large amounts of water in one go  – it’s possible to drown internally by doing this
  • Wear layers of clothing, so that when you get hot you can remove the outer layer
  • Cool down: if you’re getting hot, especially if you’re dancing, go somewhere cool, remove top layer of clothing, splash luke-warm water on face and wrists and be still for a while. Don’t run your wrists under cold water. Our bodies cool down by releasing heat from the blood in the veins under our skin. If the veins get cold they move away from the skin surface, which stops the release of heat. Using luke-warm water keeps the veins nearer the skin and encourages the release of heat
  • Drink a glass of water before going to sleep. It will replace some of the moisture lost

If you have symptoms of dehydration:

  • tell someone and ask them to stay with you
  • remove your top layer of clothing
  • drink a small bottle or a half-pint glass of water, in small sips. If you can get hold of a bottle of isotonic sports drink, this is even better. Isotonic drinks contain sodium (salt).  One of the causes of illness in dehydration is the loss of sodium through excessive sweating. The body needs a certain amount of sodium in its system, to be healthy. Drinking an isotonic drink will replace some of the sodium you’ve lost.

If your symptoms don’t go away, call an ambulance.