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LSD Addiction And The Best Rehab Centers For Treatment

Medically reviewed by

David Hunter, MA.Ed, LPC

February 13, 2019

Made from lysergic acid, naturally found on rotting rye and other grains, LSD consists of odorless, colorless crystals that have a bitter taste. It’s commonly used as a gel capsule, absorbent paper, or liquid form which is placed on the tongue, or on the skin. Many people on an acid trip experience vivid hallucinations, that can last up to 12 hours, or longer.

Lysergic acid diethylamide (LSD) was first created in a laboratory setting as an experimental blood stimulant in 1938. LSD was popularized in the 1960s, and is now commonly abused by teenagers and college students.

LSD hallucinations become a nightmare (bad trip) for many people, causing them to panic and feel an overwhelming rush of anxiety, fear, and depression.  Many people on an acid trip don’t realize the things that they are experiencing aren’t real.

Short-Term Effects Of LSD

Because LSD’s trip lasts so long, many of its short-term effects are particularly dangerous. Side-effect may include:

  • insomnia
  • strange behavior
  • rapid heartbeat
  • tremors
  • sweats and chills
  • uncontrollable laughter/crying
  • feelings of death and despair
  • impaired judgment

Because of the negative emotions associated with LSD, paired with hallucinations that can cause a person to believe they are in danger or dying, many people face extreme paranoia, and may harm themselves. The extreme mood swings experienced on an acid trip may put the person and those around them in danger. Some people on LSD commit suicide out of fear.

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Long-Term Effects Of LSD

While LSD abusers may not exhibit drug seeking behavior to the same extent as other addictive drugs, there are still consequences. The long-term effects of LSD may include:

  • long-lasting psychosis
  • depression
  • anxiety
  • apathy
  • drug-induced flashbacks
  • never coming down (known as a “permatrip”)

A person’s tolerance for LSD increases greatly when they use the drug frequently. This means that they need to use a larger dose each time they they use the drug. LSD tolerance is dangerous due to the fact that they are more likely to experience a bad trip on a higher dose, or never come down off of the drug. High doses of LSD may be more likely to result in post traumatic stress disorder.

LSD Addiction Treatment

Most studies show that while LSD doesn’t cause physical addiction, mental addiction can be strong amongst those who are heavy users. Thus, many people choose to take advantage of outpatient rehab for LSD addiction, as there is no need for detoxification or constant monitoring. Instead, many follow a weekly regiment of counseling and life skills training that allows them to understand their mental addiction and stay on the path to clean living.

Counseling is important to help a person suffering from LSD addiction to maintain a healthy emotional balance. Those who have experienced depression, anxiety, or apathy due to long-term LSD use may benefit from inpatient counseling. Some patients are prescribed anti-depressants, but it medication-assisted treatment is not always necessary to overcome LSD.

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