Lysergic acid diethylamide is most commonly known as LSD. It’s a white powder or clear, colorless liquid and it’s a banned street drug. It can be purchased in various formats, including powder, liquid, pill, and capsule. In most cases, people take LSD by swallowing a pill. Many choose to snort it or inject it into a vein (shooting up).
LSD has many slang names on the streets, including acid, blotter, blotter acid, blue cheer, electric Kool-Aid, hits, Lucy in the sky with diamonds, mellow yellow, microdots, purple haze, sugar cubes, sunshine tabs, and window pane.
A Look at the Brain’s Reaction to LSD
The substance LSD has the ability to alter one’s state of consciousness. This means that it has an effect on the brain (the central nervous system), altering one’s disposition, actions, and interactions with the external world. The neurotransmitter serotonin is a target of LSD’s interference. Serotonin is involved in the regulation of behavior, mood, the senses, and the brain.
When used, LSD belongs to the hallucinogens category of drugs. Drugs in this category are known to induce hallucinations. When you’re awake, your mind can produce images, sounds, and sensations that fool your senses into thinking they’re real. When it comes to hallucinogens, LSD ranks near the top. It only takes a very small dose to start having hallucinations.
“Trips” are what those who take LSD to hallucinate name their experiences. A trip can be “good” or “awful,” depending on the dose and the individual’s brain chemistry.
An interesting and enjoyable journey could be the result. Having a negative experience on the road can be really upsetting.
LSD is risky due of the unpredictability of its effects. Because of this, your experience while using it could range from pleasant to unpleasant. It’s impossible to predict the outcome:
You may feel as if you are floating and separated from reality.
Similar to the intoxicating effects of alcohol, you may experience feelings of happiness (euphoria, or “rush”) and lowered inhibitions.
It’s possible that you’ll experience a state of lucid thought, superhuman power, and utter lack of fear.
There’s a chance that your perceptions will warp. Things can change their shapes and sizes. Also, your senses may “cross over.” Colors and sounds may be perceived by you.
You may experience a wide range of feelings all at once or quickly switch between them.
Your mind may be filled with terrible images.
You may find yourself paralyzed by fears you usually keep at bay. A person may experience negative emotions and ideas, such as a sense of impending death or a desire to hurt himself or others.
How rapidly you feel the effects of LSD depends on how you use it:
Taken by mouth: Effects normally start in 20 to 30 minutes. In most cases, the effects reach their maximum intensity between 2 and 4 hours after administration and can remain for up to 12 hours.
When administered intravenously, LSD’s effects can be felt in as little as 10 minutes.
Intolerance of LSD
The effects of LSD, such as compulsive use, are not due to its addictive nature. Tolerance to LSD can develop rapidly, even after short-term use. It takes increasingly large doses of LSD to provide the same effect as before, because tolerance develops over time.
Options for Treatment
Recognizing a condition requires a first step toward treatment. When someone has made the decision to stop using LSD, the next step is to seek professional assistance and emotional support.
Counseling is used as a behavior change tool in treatment programs (talk therapy). The aim is for you to learn about your habits and the reasons you take LSD. Counseling is more effective when loved ones are involved because they provide emotional support and act as a barrier to relapse (relapsing).
Drugs to alleviate anxiety, depression, and psychosis may be administered for LSD users at risk for developing these conditions.
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