Hallucinogens are psychoactive drugs that can cause perceptual changes. Hallucinogens are capable of causing several different side effects depending on the type of drug taken. Many hallucinogens cause changes in the user’s perception of time and consciousness. Other experiences related to hallucinogen abuse and hallucinogen addiction include hearing sounds or seeing images that are not real but are perceived to be real by the drug taker. Hallucinogen addiction and drug abuse are common addition problems throughout the world.
Hallucinogen abuse and hallucinogen addiction has been documented in many societies. The abuse of hallucinogens often puts users at risk for serious injury. For instance, those who are intoxicated from hallucinogens may experience intense fear and anxiety from their hallucinations. They may harm themselves or others in an attempt to fight off something that is not real. There are cases of users causing serious injury to themselves while experiencing frightening hallucinations.
Treatment of individuals who are addicted to hallucinogens involves a multi-step approach. In many cases, addicts of hallucinogens will require some type of rehabilitation therapy along with psychotherapy and group support. Major lifestyle changes must be implemented by the hallucinogen addict, and the previous situations and people that were associated with hallucinogen abuse must be avoided.
Effects of Hallucinogen Abuse
Hallucinogens such as LSD, PCP, mescaline, and others are commonly abused and there are certain symptoms that can be noticed when a user is under the effect of these drugs. Hallucinogen addiction includes a wide range of psychological and physical problems in regular users.
Hallucinogens are thought to cause their effects on the body through altering the serotonin neurotransmitter distribution system in the brain and central nervous system. Drugs such as psilocybin, PCP (phencyclidine), and LSD (lysergic acid diethylamide) are some of the most common drugs used for hallucinogen abuse. Addiction to these drugs and other hallucinogens is very serious because hallucinogen abuse is often associated with dangerous and risky behavior.
The major signs of hallucinogen addiction, depending on the drug, can be spotted early on. The most obvious sign of hallucinogen addiction is if a person exhibits the trademark hallucinations and other side effects of PCP, LSD abuse, or other hallucinogens. Typically this includes disorientation, visual hallucinations, elevated heart rate, and impaired motor function.
Depending on the type of hallucinogen addiction, each set of symptoms will be unique and many of the symptoms of hallucinogen addiction can be quite severe even at lower doses. For instance, some of the more obvious symptoms of the abuse of hallucinogens include dilated pupils, perspiration, hallucinations, inability to sleep, loss of appetite, fever, varied emotional states, and several other symptoms.
The abuse of hallucinogens often results in users requiring more and more of the substance in order to achieve a desired effect. This is due to a tolerance build up in the user’s body, and very high drug tolerance is often seen in cases of LSD abuse and other cases of hallucinogen abuse.
Some of the long term effects of hallucinogen abuse include persistent psychosis and the distortion of a person’s capacity to reason and consciousness of reality. Persistent psychosis may manifest through manic episodes that are characterized by visual hallucinations and a disassociation from reality.
A disorder called Hallucinogen Persisting Perception Disorder may be seen in some cases of hallucinogen abuse. This disorder is characterized by flashbacks of previous hallucinations along with a spontaneous reoccurrence of hallucinations at random intervals. Some of the reported symptoms of this disorder include halos of light around various objects, distortion of objects, and various other hallucinations.
LSD Abuse and LSD Addiction
LSD abuse is a common form of hallucinogen abuse, and LSD is an illegal drug. LSD abuse is not only capable of causing serious physical side effects, but even more dangerous are the psychological side effects associated with LSD abuse and other types of hallucinogen abuse.
An LSD abuse addict will show certain signs that signify that he or she has a hallucinogen addiction. For instance, a person who partakes in LSD abuse will show a higher than normal body temperature, signs of dehydration, visual impairment, low appetite, and may describe objects or lights that are not real. Some of these symptoms can also be seen in other cases of hallucinogen abuse and hallucinogen addiction.
There are several signs and symptoms of LSD abuse and hallucinogen addiction such as dry mouth, dilated pupils, tremors, perspiration, confused senses, and high blood pressure. The side effects of LSD depend on how much of the drug was taken, and they may vary from person to person as well.
A “bad trip” on LSD is a frightening experience that involves hallucinations that evoke fear and anxiety in the user. LSD users experiencing a bad trip may say that they are seeing things that are not present, they may be extremely anxious, and they may experience panic attacks.
LSD abuse can also lead to Hallucinogen Persisting Perception Disorder which involves bouts of psychosis and flashbacks of previous hallucinations. Psychological disorders such as depression and anxiety may be triggered by extended LSD abuse, and the drug may cause other types of severe psychological dysfunction.
LSD Addiction and Hallucinogen Treatment
LSD is not as physically addictive as other substances, however it is shown to be a psychological hallucinogen addiction, and many of those who participate in LSD abuse are psychologically addicted. Treatment is recommended for many cases of LSD addiction.
Typically, treatment of hallucinogen addiction will involve dealing with both the short term and long term effects of the drug. LSD abuse treatment typically involves attending one or more drug rehab centers. Often times an extended period of stay may be required at drug rehab centers. Other hallucinogen abuse and hallucinogen addiction treatments that are used may include group therapies and cognitive therapies.
Treatment of hallucinogen addiction involves taking steps to calm down and medically treat patients that are under the influence of LSD abuse and hallucinogen abuse. Since the drug can create several physical side effects in individuals who take it on a regular basis, there can be physical health problems associated with high doses of LSD and other hallucinogens that must be treated.
After any present intoxication from LSD abuse has been treated, long term treatments of hallucinogen addiction may include psychological counseling in order to identify the reasons for the LSD abuse and to help users cope with some of the psychological effects of hallucinogen abuse.
Getting help for LSD abuse is critical as the effects of the drug can be dangerous and unpredictable. There are several resources available such as local rehabilitation centers for hallucinogen addiction and local public health clinics. There may also be local group therapy meetings for those affected by hallucinogen abuse or hallucinogen addiction. These group therapy meetings are an excellent supplement to rehabilitation treatment. Many local hallucinogen addiction rehab centers can be easily found with online resources as well.