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LSD/Acid Abuse: The Risks and Dangers of These Hallucinogenic Drugs

LSD or acid abuse is quite common in the United States. People rarely turn to acid as a way to get high when they are new to using drugs.

They typically begin by using other substances first, and then gradually get curious abut LSD. Even so, this drug is very dangerous, and there are many risks involved with using it.

If you have been using LSD, you may be unaware of these risks. You also may not know how easily abusing it can become an addiction. Getting the right information is so important.

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Abusing LSD and Acid

LSD stands for lysergic acid diethylamide, and it commonly goes by the name acid. It was first synthesized by Albert Hofmann in 1938. It is a Schedule I substance in the United States. This means that it is illegal to purchase it, manufacture it, or possess it without a license from the DEA. What this also means is that any use of this drug in the United States is considered to be abuse.

Acid is classified as a hallucinogenic drug.

It comes in different forms, including tablets and liquid infused into strips of paper. It is created in illegal laboratories and distributed on the street. It can be found under the names, Yellow Sunshine, Blotters and Dots.

Most people choose to abuse this substance out of curiosity. They've typically used other types of drugs in the past, and are looking for a different high experience. If you currently use LSD, this might be what drew you to it as well.

The Risks Involved with Acid Abuse

People who use this drug rarely consider the risks involved. They're usually completely focused on the experience. However, there are serious risks associated with tripping on acid. Some of these include:

  • Having flashbacks, which are trip-like experiences when you haven't been using the drug.
  • Hallucinogen-induced Persisting Perception Disorder (HPPD), which is a condition that involves flashbacks. However, in this case, the flashbacks can last years, and they happen quite frequently.
  • The risk of getting injured or being in an accident due to poor vision, coordination problems, and poor judgment.
  • The risk of developing a tolerance to LSD.
  • Social problems, such as job loss or relationship problems.
  • Birth defects in pregnant women who use this drug.

Of course, there are also both physical and mental side effects as well. We'll discuss those in just a moment.

As you can see, LSD is not the "harmless" drug it appears to be. It can be dangerous, and abusing it should be avoided at all costs.

Acid Trip Experiences and Effects

Those who are unfamiliar with this drug often wonder what an acid trip is like. People who frequently abuse it are very familiar with this term. An acid trip means the high that is experienced after using this substance.

LSD Addiction

There are all different types of trips. As you might expect, the first one is usually the most intense. However, it can be good or bad.

A person's first time on acid feels pretty intense. Online forums like Bluelight and Reddit advise users to be very cautious the first time they use this drug. It can last a very long time, and smaller doses of it are all that is needed. The typical acid trip length is generally between 8 and 12 hours. However, it can seem to go on forever.

LSD works by changing a person's perception of reality. Hallucinations are common, but they don't happen with everyone. For the first time, the experience really depends on the attitude of the person going into it. If the individual is happy, the trip is likely to be good. If there is fear associated with using the drug, the trip may be bad, or even scary.

Entering into a trip is much like entering into a dream. A good trip feels extremely pleasant. If you research good acid trip stories, you'll find characteristics like:

  • Noticing how beautiful the world is
  • Feeling as though relationships are deep and meaningful
  • A general feeling of extreme happiness
  • An optimistic outlook on life
  • Feeling physically and mentally well

Everyone who uses LSD is always hopeful for a good trip. Unfortunately, they're not all good. Occasionally, people do experience bad trips, and they can seem terrifyingly real.

A bad trip carries and overwhelming sensation of fear for most people who experience them. They are characterized by:

  • Feeling as though life is very painful
  • Viewing the world as harsh and cold
  • Seeing everything around you as being ugly, or even scary
  • Relationships that appear to be cruel
  • Terrible emotions that are impossible to escape

When tripping on LSD, time can seem to slow down. That means that having a bad trip can make you feel as though you're locked into a horrible place. The feelings associated with this experience are impossible to control. People tend to feel frightened, and as though they're losing their minds.

Why do People Continue to Use LSD?

If the risk of having a bad trip is always there, why do people continue to abuse this drug? That's a good question. Unfortunately, they're always hoping for a good trip. For many, that's enough to keep them going back for more.

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Is an LSD Addiction Possible?

People who abuse this drug often wonder, is LSD addictive?. Most experts agree that, like other hallucinogenic drugs, it does not lead to a physical addiction. However, it's important to understand that it can lead to dependence.

According to Medical News Today, dependence means that it requires more of the drug to get the same high. This means that people easily form a tolerance to this substance with repeated abuse. Physically, it's not possible to become addicted to acid. However, you can form a psychological addiction to it very quickly.

Signs You May Be Addicted to This Hallucinogenic Drug

It's important to know how to recognize the signs of addiction to (or dependence upon) LSD. These include:

  • Feeling odd, or not quite yourself if you haven't used it recently.
  • Thinking about acid nearly all the time.
  • Panicking if you think you might be running out of the drug.
  • Difficulty in your relationships because of this substance.
  • Exhibiting changes in your personality over time.

You may be completely unaware that you've formed an addiction to LSD. In part, that could be because you didn't know it was possible. Perhaps you've noticed many of the above symptoms of addiction in yourself. However, if you're still not sure, taking an addiction quiz can help to clarify things for you.

The Effects of Acid on the Mind and Body

According to the National Institute on Drug Abuse, hallucinogenic drugs can have serious effects. These drugs affect people in many different ways, both in their brains and in their bodies. The effects you experience may largely depend on how long you have been using it.

You can experience the short-term effects of LSD after just one use. You may find that you have:

  • An increased blood pressure
  • An increased heart rate
  • A higher body temperature than normal
  • No appetite
  • Chronic insomnia
  • Rapid emotional changes
  • Frequent mood swings
  • Tremors throughout the body

The long-term effects of acid are quite troubling. People who use this drug for a long period of time are likely to experience:

  • Problems with their thinking
  • Ongoing paranoia
  • Significant mood swings and disturbances
  • Visual disturbances
  • Frequent hallucinations, even when they're not experiencing a trip

A simple Internet search will uncover countless pictures and videos of what acid does to the brain. The effects are quite profound.

In one study, it was found that various parts of the brain were communicating with each other intensely. These areas influenced how the individuals saw the world, and how they perceived themselves. Other studies have seen the same results.

One study found that LSD effectively turns off the part of the brain responsible for constraining consciousness. This makes free thought possible. The increase in brain activity is caused by how the drug affects the brain's serotonin receptors.

When these receptors are affected enough over a period of time, serious consequences can result. This can lead to permanent hallucinations that may become untreatable.

Quitting Acid, Going Through Withdrawal and the Risk of Overdosing

Quitting acid can be difficult. Proponents of the drug argue that there really aren't any serious withdrawal symptoms when stopping it. However, research says otherwise.

Even though LSD isn't considered physically addictive, the mental withdrawal can be difficult. This is why withdrawal should only be experienced in a controlled setting. Immediate medical attention may be needed to help with some symptoms.

Some of the more common symptoms of LSD withdrawal include:

  • An increase in anxiety
  • Problems with concentration
  • Feeling confused
  • The onset of depression
  • The fear of going crazy
  • Frequent flashbacks of trips
  • The onset of psychosis
  • Possible suicidal thoughts or actions

It may not take a regular user long to develop a tolerance to LSD. Again, this means that it takes more of the drug to get the same effects. When people find out that they're dependent on this substance, they may try to stop using it on their own. The result is that their tolerance levels begin to go down very quickly.

In this situation, people are at the highest risk of an overdose. They may experience withdrawal and go back to using to get some relief from their symptoms. Overdoses can also happen when people are new to LSD as well.

New users may be unaware that the drug takes some time to take effect. In fact, in many cases, it can take as long as 90 minutes to start working. Someone who is unfamiliar with LSD may assume that they just didn't use enough of it. As a result, they could overdose.

When a person has overdosed on LSD, they may experience some common symptoms. These include:

  • Digestive problems, such as diarrhea
  • Extremely dilated pupils
  • A rapid heart rate
  • Dangerously high blood pressure
  • Tingling in the hands and feet
  • Feeling nauseous
  • Shakes or tremors

In severe cases, the following is also possible:

  • The onset of seizures
  • Blood clots
  • Unconsciousness or a coma
  • Bleeding in the skull
  • An irregular heart rate
  • Extremely high body temperature

Overdosing on acid is a medical emergency. If you suspect an overdose, get medical help right away.

LSD Treatment Can Help With Your Recovery

The safest way to recover from an addiction to acid is to get professional help. This will ensure that you get the support you need during this important time. You will benefit from:

  • Talking with a counselor about your dependence on this drug
  • Working within a support group to get peer counseling
  • Discussing your mental health history, determining if you're suffering from a co-occurring disorder.
  • Participating in family therapy sessions.
  • Getting ongoing care and support.

Finding an Acid/LSD Rehab Near You

Here at Ashwood Recovery, we know that it may be a shock to learn that you have an addiction. However, it is our hope that the information you've learned motivates you to get help to recover. LSD is a dangerous drug, and with time, it can permanently scar your brain. Getting the right kind of help now can save you from years of suffering later on.

You may still have a lot of questions about acid and its role in your life. Maybe you're a concerned family member, and someone you love regularly uses this substance. No matter what your needs are, we're here to assist you.

Do you need more information about LSD or acid? Let us know by contacting us today.

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