While LSD was banned from the medical community way back in the 60s, recreational LSD use found its way into pop culture and, unfortunately, has experienced a resurgence among Americans in recent years.
LSD, commonly referred to as acid, can very quickly and easily become psychologically addictive to users. However, with no government-approved medications for treating addiction to hallucinogens, professional counseling has been found to be highly effective in helping users of LSD recover from its ill effects – in some cases, those ill effects include severe psychological or mental disorders.1
What Immediate Effects Result from LSD Use?
Research suggests that LSD and other hallucinogens temporarily disrupt communication between brain chemical systems throughout the brain and spinal cord. The immediate effects of these chemicals can begin within 20 to 90 minutes and can last up to 12 hours.LSD users refer to the highs or experiences brought on by these drugs as “trips,” calling the unpleasant experiences “bad trips.”2
Along with hallucinations, some of the general effects LSD and other hallucinogens can produce during an acid trip include:
- Mood change.
- Increased heart rate.
- Intensified feelings and sensory experiences.
- Changes in sense of time (for example, time passing by slowly).
In addition, other specific short-term effects that may occur include:
- Increased blood pressure, breathing rate or body temperature.
- Loss of appetite.
- Dry mouth.
- Sleep problems.
- Mixed senses (such as “seeing” sounds or “hearing” colors).
- Spiritual experiences.
- Feelings of relaxation or detachment from self/environment.
- Uncoordinated movements.
- Excessive sweating.
- Paranoia(extreme and unreasonable distrust of others).
- Psychosis(disordered thinking detached from reality).1
Can the Effects from LSD Use Be Long-Lasting?
While not always occurring, some of the long-term effects of hallucinogens can include:
Persistent psychosis – a series of continuing mental problems, including: visual disturbances, disorganized thinking, paranoia and mood changes.
Flashbacks – recurrences of certain drug experiences. They often happen without warning and may occur within a few days or more than a year after drug use. In some users, flashbacks can persist and affect daily functioning, a condition known as “hallucinogen persisting perceptual disorder” (HPPD). These people continue to have hallucinations and other visual disturbances, such as seeing visual trails attached to moving objects.
At times, the symptoms of LSD and other hallucinogens are misinterpreted – perhaps even misdiagnosed as a stroke,brain tumor or other condition.3
What Does LSD Addiction Treatment Look Like?
As indicated by the symptoms listed above, LSD addiction can have a tremendous impact on a person’s sense of reality; multiple forms of treatment may be required. While treatment can certainly vary from one individual to another, the types of therapy that may help in LSD addiction recovery include:
- 12-Step Programs – These programs offer a guided and structured blueprint for recovery.
- Life Skills Training – LSD users often have to relearn basic life and communication skills. These skills provide recovering users the confidence to interact and participate in everyday life without LSD.
- Fitness – LSD use has a tremendous negative impact on a person’s physical health. Exercise helps rebuild the body while providing a new and healthy activity.
- Relationship Therapy – Addiction impacts relationships with friends and loved ones. This form of therapy teaches LSD users how to have healthy relationships and repair broken ones.
Treatment for LSD addiction may be provided through in-patient or out-patient modes of care. A key factor to consider is the quality of the care being provided. Proven specialists in this area should be carefully selected to assess, treat and monitor the addiction – as well as any other related conditions that may be co-occurring and contributing to the desire for drugs and the continuation of the addiction lifestyle.4
How Can LSD Addiction Recovery Be Maintained?
As you recover from LSD addiction, you need to focus on preventing any drug use relapse by:
- Continuing to attend addiction treatment sessions – for guidance, encouragement and accountability.
- Finding new activities and goals to replace ones that involved LSD in your previous drug lifestyle.
- Spending more time with family and friends that you had lost touch with while using LSD. Take care, however; it would be wise not to have much contact with anyone who is still using LSD or other harmful drugs.
- Exercising and eating healthy foods. Taking care of your body helps it to heal from the harmful effects of LSD. This should promote feeling better…about yourself, your circumstances and everything else.
- Avoiding“triggers” that would cause you to resume drug use. These could be people you used LSD with. They could also be places, things or emotions that can make you want to use drugs again.5
Where Is a Good Place to Start for Quality LSD Addiction Help?
If you need assistance finding the right LSD addiction treatment program for your needs and preferences, we invite you to call our 24/7 toll-free line immediately. When you contact us, one of our experienced team members will carefully and compassionately listen to you, address all of your questions and concerns, and provide you with some positive healing solutions to consider as you weigh your options. It’s critical to choose a care provider you can trust. We have been faithfully and successfully serving individuals like you who need professional and confidential advice and assistance. That’s why more than ten independent reports show our integrated, evidence-based approach, with dual diagnosis capability,to be outstanding. May we help you today? We care…one person at a time.
1 “DrugFacts: Hallucinogens”, National Institute on Drug Abuse, https://www.drugabuse.gov/publications/drugfacts/hallucinogens , (January 2016).
2“Hallucinogens and Dissociative Drugs”, National Institute on Drug Abuse, https://www.drugabuse.gov/publications/research-reports/hallucinogens-dissociative-drugs/where-can-i-get-more-scientific-information-hallucinogens-diss , (February 2015).
3 “Hallucinogen Use Disorders Among Adult Users of MDMA and Other Hallucinogens”, National Center for Biotechnology Information, http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC2648386/ , (September 1, 2009).
4“An Employer’s Guide to Workplace Substance Abuse: Strategies and Treatment Recommendations”, National Business Group on Health, https://www.businessgrouphealth.org/pub/f3151957-2354-d714-5191-c11a80a07294, (August 2009).
5“Substance Use: LSD”, MedLine Plus, U.S. National Library of Medicine, https://medlineplus.gov/ency/patientinstructions/000795.htm , (August 1, 2016).