MDMA Safer Use Guide: Just the Basics

New to or MDMA? Check out our overview page.

An acronym to help remember the following is:


H: Heat stroke

O: Overdose signs

W: Water / salt / hyponatremia

I: Interactions with other drugs/medicines or health conditions

F: Fake MDMA

How will you roll safer if you don’t know the following?

The acronym isn’t perfect, as just remembering “overdose signs” doesn’t mean you’ll remember the overdose signs, but seems to be better than nothing. And you can always visit this page again later when you need it. Just google MDMA safety basics.

Know How to Recognize an Overdose

  • Someone who feels hot but isn’t sweating and/or passes out1
  • Faintness2
  • Seizures2
  • Loss of consciousness2

What to do if you see overdose signs

  • Seek medical help immediately.2
  • “If in a hot, crowded environment and the person is still conscious, move them to somewhere cooler and calm.”2 Generally help them cool down if they are hot.

Reducing the risk of serious issues with MDMA

Reducing the Risk of: Fake MDMA

Ideal: use a test kit.

Better than nothing: Don’t take pills or powders that you haven’t seen others take without issue.

Reducing the Risk of: Heat stroke / serotonin syndrome

  • Ideal:

    • Dose only one capsule per night. (If you know the weight, less than your weight in kg + 50mg)
    • Roll only in a house environment, not out a warm nightclub
  • At minimum:

    • Know the signs of heat exhaustion and heat stroke.

Signs of heat exhaustion:

  • Heavy sweating
  • Weakness
  • Cold, pale, and clammy skin
  • Fast, weak pulse
  • Nausea or vomiting
  • Fainting3

If you experience or see early signs of heat exhaustion, move to a cooler location, lie down, loosen your clothing, and apply cool and wet cloths to as much of your body as possible. “If you have vomited and it continues, seek medical attention immediately.”3

Signs of heat stroke:

  • Hot, red, dry or moist skin3
  • Rapid and strong pulse3
  • Body temperature above 103 degrees F3
  • Seizures
  • Possible unconsciousness4 3

If you see any of the signs of heat stroke above, this is a medical emergency. Call 911, move the person to a cooler environment, use cool cloths or a cool bath. Do not give fluids.3

Reducing the Risk of: Hyponatremia / Water Intoxication

  • Ideal: Drink between 250-500ml/hour of an electrolyte containing beverage. Closer to 250ml/h if not dancing/in a hot environment, closer to 500ml if hot environment.

  • Better than nothing: Drink less than 2 glasses (500 ml) of water per hour. Or get some sparkling grape juice! Eat salty snacks (nuts, chips, pretzels, fast food)! And know the hyponatremia symptoms.

Hyponatremia symptoms include: nausea, vomiting, headache, confusion, and fatigue. Eat salty snacks ASAP, restrict water intake, and get ready to seek prompt medical attention. Always err on the side of seeking medical attention rather than not.

From best to better than nothing (based on electrolyte content): Gatorade/Powerade >> Sparkling grape juice >> Orange soda, Citrus soda >> Apple Juice >> Orange Juice >> Water.

Reducing the Risk of: Serious interactions with medicines or health conditions

  • Better than nothing: Give the two pages below a quick skim read to make sure none of them apply to you.

Particularly important to look into if you’re taking supplements or prescription meds, or if you have health conditions.

Read: health conditions and drug interactions.

Graduate Level: Being even safer

We do not promote the use of illegal psychoactive substances. This content has been created strictly for harm reduction purposes, and you should note that the only way to be perfectly safe using MDMA is to not take it at all. The same is true with alcohol, skydiving, and sex - the only way to be perfectly safe in these activities is to not do them.

Get started with taking supplements whenever you take MDMA. As a good place to start: Buy some ALCAR supplements. Take 1000mg (2 capsules) at the same time you take your dose of MDMA. If you’re taking multiple doses in a session, take 500 mg of ALCAR (generally 1 capsule) with each MDMA dose, with a daily maximum of 2500 mg of ALCAR. Please note that even if you take supplements it’s vital to still watch out fake MDMA, heat stroke, hyponatremia, and serious interactions with medications or health conditions.

Don’t do any redoses. One dose per night, a max of your weight in kg + 50 mg, if you know the exact weight of your MDMA.

Wait at least 3-5 weeks between each use of MDMA.

Roll only at house parties / home events, not at any warm nightclubs.

Read and follow How to Take MDMA.