Risks of LSD Use

Commenter Nobody questions what the risks of LSD use are:

RL: There are good reasons not to do acid, but fear of being permanently mentally ill is not one of them.
Nobody: What are those reasons, in your mind? I’ve done acid and have my own ideas, but I’m curious what you have to say about it.

Use of LSD can cause permanent visual disruptions called Hallucinogen Post Perception Disorder. I have it myself, but it’s not bad. Others have it very bad.
It can also cause a temporary psychosis or mental breakdown, not because it did any physical damage to the brain, but simply via psychological mechanisms like panic and whatnot.
It can also cause long-term psychological trauma via the same mechanism, not through physical damage to the brain but due to psychological trauma, upsetting experiences, unpleasant unconscious stuff coming to the forefront, etc. It’s similar to Post Traumatic Stress Disorder.
I’ve known way too many people who have taken LSD 100+ times who were totally normal in every way, shape and form. One guy took it 700 times and was completely normal.
On the other hand, there are folks who have taken LSD many, many times, like over 1,000 times and especially 2,000-4,000 times. Timothy Leary comes to mind. Tim Leary was one of the few drug cases I can think of who did seem to be damaged somehow. He wasn’t really nuts; he just seemed sort of fried. I’m not sure if it was the acid, but I’m worried. There are other folks who have taken LSD 1,500-4,000 times and are now permanently mentally ill. Some of them fade in and out of it. The diagnoses vary. At the same time, there’s no evidence that these folks suffer from any kind of brain damage, so the facts are confusing. Nevertheless, taking LSD 1,000 times or more seems to be a pretty risky endeavor in terms of your mental health, even though the reasons for why are not known.

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0 thoughts on “Risks of LSD Use”

    1. None.
      Actually, a while back, I had OCD in the most horrible way. I had this one thought, a really terrible thought, all the time, 24-7. I had had it for about 2 years. Anyway, I took LSD and drove from LA to Tahoe that summer. For about I think 2 whole hours, that thought was simply GONE. I mean GONE. I had 2 whole hours of peace on acid. Of course, after 2 hours, I was like, “WOW, the thought was gone for 2 hours!” But then it came back with a vengeance.
      I felt really peaceful for about a month afterwards. Felt really nice.
      Shouldn’t have any effect on OCD at all though, long-term.

    2. Yeah, LSD can definitely help in some areas. After my first trip I lost more than 70 pounds and kept the weight off. When it was legal to do research with LSD there was a study that found it was very effective at treating alcoholism.
      I don’t think psychedelics have been all good for me, but I’m grateful for the perspective they’ve given me. There are definitely diminishing returns, though. After a few trips it’s more about recreation than anything else.
      If you’re interested in trying psychedelics, I’d recommend shrooms first. Acid is profoundly life-altering, but it lasts a long time and the recovery period is also long. You might look into ayahuasca. It’s legal, and definitely NOT a party drug(you will puke), but it’s a really positive experience.

  1. Man with OCD here. I’m taking medication for it.
    I will take LSD for the first time in a few weeks. What are the possibilities of having HPPD?
    You’ve said you got visual disruptions, what it feels like? Is it the same thing which is called “flashbacks”?

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