7 Reasons To Seek Addiction Treatment
Substance use disorder, which is more colloquially known as drug addiction, is a serious mental...
Lysergic acid diethylamide, or LSD, is a strong hallucinogen that, when used liberally, can cause ill effects that last a lifetime (StatPearls). Although LSD has been used and tested on different mental health disorders and illnesses, there is no FDA-approved use for LSD due to the dangerous and often undeterminable side effects of the drug.
LSD was created by accident by Albert Hoffman, who was trying to create circulatory and respiratory stimulants (StatPearls). He ended up using LSD to create a model for psychosis and psychosis-like states.
LSD’s Effect on the Brain
LSD’s immediate effect on the brain is a sense of euphoria, often referred to as a “trip.” According to the National Institutes of Health (NIH), a trip can last hours, even after LSD has left the bloodstream. These trips are caused by an interaction between LSD and the proteins on brain cells, called serotonin receptors. Serotonin is a chemical in the brain that acts as a messenger, communicating the senses to the brain to help your surroundings make sense. Serotonin receptors open up two main communicative pathways within the brain cell protein, each with different effects.
Researchers found that LSD will most often open up one type of serotonin receptor pathway that will trigger its sensory effects. This will cause hallucinations and powerful sensory changes to the person having a trip. The serotonin receptor will then close the LSD molecule into the protein with a “lid,” causing the effects of LSD to last for extended amounts of time.
According to StatPearls, LSD has also been shown to reduce brain activity in certain parts of the brain: namely the gyrus, anterior cingulate cortex, cerebellum, and hippocampus. All of these brain areas help people form visual images and formulate a message from sensory stimulation.
Long-Term LSD Effects
A common myth about LSD is that the euphoric-hallucinogen bits of this substance can sit in your spine and induce a trip if you crack your neck. LSD will actually be locked in brain cell proteins by the serotonin receptor lid (NIH). This can cause adverse effects to happen and seems to be the best explanation for why they can happen so long after the initial use of LSD.
LSD has been used in testing facilities both in past and present studies in order to find the rare positive effects it can have on a subject. Unfortunately, in this endeavor, many test subjects have been plagued by the ill effects that can last for a lifetime. Some brain cell proteins will keep large amounts of LSD trapped underneath the serotonin receptor lid, creating adverse effects for a person at seemingly random times when they have not ingested the substance.
Testing LSD is often done to help with prescription drug testing and bring forth the mystery of how to isolate the benefits of its use. Researchers hope to use LSD to create a painkiller that does not have the adverse effects opiates have. Some have also tested this substance to aid those with neurologic diseases, such as Alzheimer’s or even chronic headaches. So far, no such LSD-based painkiller exists without the adverse effects as well.
LSD Symptoms and Side Effects
LSD provides a euphoric “trip” that can have a strong impact on a person. Some people have great experiences with bright colors, good feelings, positive hallucinations, and a sense of calm, curiosity, and ease. Others have what they call a bad trip, which can include nightmare-like hallucinations. These nightmare hallucinations can be devastating and stressful to a person.
The positive side effects, coincidentally, show potential with substance abuse treatment and recovery. If one is lucky enough to have the right dose at the right time with the perfect conditions, there is a chance that a person in recovery would experience less stress or anxiety. This would help in avoiding relapse, solely because stress and anxiety are common causes for relapsing. Research is still being done to explore how LSD could positively affect those in recovery; however, this research is in the early stages.
Researchers have not nailed down exactly how LSD works with the brain to create positive effects, or how to control the use of this substance to create the same effect again and again. This process, along with medical testing, will still take many years, so do not wait to rely on LSD to help manage mental health disorders. It is important for any person in recovery who is feeling stress or anxiety to find support from a therapist, support group, or friends and family members.
As a classical hallucinogen and a Schedule 1 substance in the United States, LSD is known to be very addictive. Its testing has far to go for its use as a treatment option. LSD does have the potential to change the brain forever, leaving scars of its adverse effects on those who try it, even once. If you’re someone struggling with mental health or LSD addiction, contact us at RECO Intensive today. At RECO Intensive, we understand that LSD addiction is serious, despite what news reports or those around you say about the benefits. Many people have been seriously injured by LSD’s effects, and we want to help you find your way to a safe and healthy brain again. Our professional staff and experienced alumni can help you create a treatment and recovery plan that is catered specifically to you. Don’t wait, call RECO Intensive today at (561) 464-6533. Let’s get back to a brighter future.
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