LSD is a potent psychedelic drug. It has no approved medical usage; therefore, it is considered an illegal substance. The drug is synthesized from a fungus that grows on common grains, called ergot. It can be snorted, injected and swallowed in pill form, but it is most commonly ingested on small white pieces of paper soaked in the substance, blotter paper. Blotter paper generally has colorful designs on it as well, which are intended to aid the experience of the user while on the drug. The time while on the drug is also referred to as a trip or an acid trip.[i]
LSD generally begins to affect a user within the first hour of taking the substance, and the effects continue for several hours afterward. Emotionally, users report strong mood swings or feeling multiple emotions at once while on the drug. Also, people often experience crossover sensations in which they may see sounds or hear colors.
Physically, LSD causes dilated pupils, increased body temperature, nausea and vomiting, increased blood pressure and heart rate, and sleeplessness.[ii] Because LSD causes hallucinations, each LSD trip is different. Sometimes users may be euphoria or ecstasy; however, some hallucinations are terrifying causing users to experience their most horrifying fears. Although they are not actually in danger from what they are perceiving, it seems so real to them that people often act out irrationally becoming a threat to both themselves and others.
LSD is not considered physically addictive; however, users can become addicted to the feeling they have while on the drug, which causes them to continually seek more. Also, oftentimes repeat users must take more of the drug to get the same effects over time.
Why LSD Recovery Requires a Lifelong Commitment
Although the catchphrase “once an addict, always an addict” overly simplifies a complex matter, it does point to one truth about the nature of addiction. Recovery experts believe that most people do not stumble into addiction because they get easily hooked on drugs, alcohol or sex. Rather, substance abuse is the result of deeper problems. Several include the following:
- Untreated mental illness
- Neglected emotional wounds
- Underdeveloped coping strategies
- Lack of community support[iii]
For addictive people the decision to stop using drugs is a choice to embrace a new way of living. This usually includes gaining a new perspective on every area of life, which is why detoxing and resisting drug use is only the first step toward getting sober. In order to achieve lasting sobriety, an individual must also grow in the following ways:
The quality of one’s sobriety and ability to avoid relapse hinges on practicing recovery skills long term. People who revert to drug abuse often fail to realize this and, subsequently, do not progress in their personal growth. Long before they take a drink or a drug, they begin to neglect foundational pieces of recovery such as community service, connection to community and spiritual deepening. Regardless of how much sober time an individual has, falling back into old patterns of thinking and dealing with life often leads to relapse.
Help for LSD Abuse
If you or someone you love is struggling with LSD abuse, help is available. Admissions coordinators at our toll-free, 24 hour helpline can guide you to wellness. We can even check your insurance coverage for you on the call. You don’t have to alone when support is just one phone call away. Start your recovery today.