Lysergic acid diethylamide (LSD) is a hallucinogen with psychedelic properties. LSD “trips” can last from 6 to 12 hours and can cause many different responses in the body. For example, a person who misuses LSD may experience vivid hallucinations that can be terrifying. Others who use the drug may experience mood swings, anxiety, panic attacks, or paranoia.
Because LSD is an illegal drug, people often procure other illegal drugs when they take LSD, or mix LSD with alcohol. The results can be very dangerous.
- Tremors, chills, temperature changes and heart rate spikes
- Confusion and cognitive malfunction
- Involuntary, recurrent memories known as “flashbacks”
- Development or acceleration of a mental health illness
LSD is a powerful drug that can have a profound impact on anyone who uses it. Continual use of LSD may contribute to an unhealthy hormonal imbalance and affect emotional stability.
Dangers of Hormonal Imbalance
Endocrine glands produce hormones. These are chemical messengers that carry information to different parts of the body.
Hormonal imbalances occur when the body produces too many or too few hormones or when the messengers are not working properly. When hormonal imbalance is left untreated, this imbalance can cause several effects in the body.
Some side effects of hormonal imbalance include:
- Increased levels of anxiety, depression, and irritability
- Mood swings and emotional instability
- Insomnia, concentration problems, and lethargy
It is important to note that several other factors, such as age, menopause, and diet play a role in hormonal balance. Most drugs work by mimicking or impacting brain hormone levels.
LSD impacts the brain by taking up space that is usually reserved for the neurotransmitter serotonin. LSD bonds with the 2A receptor in the brain. This receptor usually bonds with serotonin only, but, once introduced, LSD takes the place of the serotonin in the 2A receptor and, simply put, chaos ensues. This introduces changes in normal brain patterns and seems to decrease communication and connectivity between two important brain regions: the parahippocampus and the retrosplenial cortex.2
While LSD does not act like any natural brain chemical, it does create changes in the brain. These disruptions can lead to a number of incorrect perceptions, and go on to impact mood, responsiveness, and behaviors.
LSD Abuse Rehab
Unlike most drugs, LSD abuse does not require a physical detox. However, the drug’s impact on mental and emotional health is a concern, especially if it has been used in combination with other substances, without any medical supervision, or on an ongoing basis. Professional rehab is effective because it targets the underlying issues behind LSD use as well as the drug abuse itself.
- Mental health evaluation to identify any mood disorders and/or emotional problems
- Overall screenings to check for physical health concerns
- Integrated treatment to address any co-occurring issues
- Holistic therapies that help restore the patient’s hormonal balance
- Therapy and group support to overcome substance use issues
Rehab addresses the physical and mental health impact of LSD use. Residential rehab and outpatient rehab both offer a number of ways to become well. For instance, group support sessions are a great way to discuss substance abuse with other people who share the same goals of wellness. Group therapy offers mutual support systems and friendships that may carry on well beyond treatment.
Psychotherapy, or talk therapy, is very helpful to determine personal substance use triggers. Therapy helps each person examine the underlying motivations behind the drug use. Family therapy helps build communication skills, educate family members, and build coping techniques for the entire family system. Ongoing aftercare counseling and group support help even after the completion of drug rehab.
LSD Abuse Helpline
Drug abuse impacts every aspect of a person’s life. Call us at 877-345-3299 if you would like to know about treatment options, rehab facilities, intervention planning, health coverage for addiction, or more. We are happy to help.
1 National Institute on Drug Abuse. What are Hallucinogens? Jan 2016.
2 Cormier, Z. What LSD Actually Does to the Brain. BBC Science Focus. 12 Apr 2016.