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LSD is non-toxic, has no known adverse physical after-effects other than fatigue and a lingering sensation of mind-expansion.
However, LSD is a powerful mental amplifier. If you are feeling depressed, anxious, sick at the world, at the quality of modern television, at rampant consumerism, at life in general, do not take LSD.
LSD's effects and your reaction to them are strongly determined by set and setting. Set is your mindset when taking the drug; setting is where you are.
The LSD effect makes you enormously sensitive to your environment. You should always be in a safe, comfortable environment, preferably with a friend you trust. The higher you fly, the safer must be the landing arrangements. Many users recommend being outside, in a beautiful setting in nature.
We cannot reinforce this enough: this is not a drug to be taken arbitrarily. We, as a matter of fact, recommend that you do not use LSD. Visit our LSD effects page to learn why. But if you are in the company of individuals using LSD or are actually planning to use yourself, be aware of these safety precautions so that your risk of becoming a statistic is lessened. Again, the best choice is not using and avoidance of those who do.
Bad Trips on Acid
The most notorious peril from taking LSD is the 'bad trip' when the experience turns frightening and traumatic. You can find out more about bad trips and how to avoid them on our page here.
Of all psychedelic drugs, LSD probably has the highest potential for creating bad trips, thanks to its sheer power and the impossibility of judging the dose of street LSD. Also, LSD can bring buried and repressed unconscious material into conscious awareness. This can be traumatic and frightening if unexpected.
Most people who have experienced a bad trip do not touch the drug again. Experienced users and 'hard heads' accept bad trips as part of the territory.
Street LSD varies massively in quality. Heat, air and light all degrade LSD and there is no way of telling how much you're getting on a single blotter. On average, today's tabs carry between 40 (low dose) and 150 micrograms of LSD (medium dose).
IMPORTANT: Always wait at least two hours before deciding the LSD is not working. The come-up period can take this long. Do not take another tab. You may well end up in a dimension not of your choosing.
Don't Drop Acid Alone
Tripping alone for the first time is not recommended. An experienced and trusted friend should either be your tripping partner, or should abstain and act as a sober sitter or guide to be around and help you if you get into troubled waters.
Choose Location Carefully
If you're going to trip, please do it in a pleasant and serene environment. No phone calls. No visitors. Be near to nature or surround yourself with attractive plants, pictures, fruit, and other such decor. Have a selection of beautiful music within reach to enhance the mood and help you relax.
If you are dosing with friends, ensure that all of you take the same amount, at the same time, in full view of everyone else. This will decrease any chance of paranoia and ensure you are all on the same level.
Social Problems Associated with Acid Use
Although LSD isn't physically addictive, regular users can become psychologically addicted. The fact that a trip can last for several hours and the individual will likely feel very tired after coming down means that the user may not be eating regularly or properly. A person who is tripping often may experience altered sleep patterns and neglect his or her personal hygiene.
As the psychological addiction progresses, the LSD user will likely neglect his or her personal relationships, too. The world they experience while under the influence of the drug becomes more interesting or perhaps less stressful than the reality of the user's "regular" life.
Poor Judgment After Dropping Acid
The reason it's a good idea for people who choose to drop acid to do so with a sober friend present is that using this drug can lower inhibitions. People who are tripping lose track of time and their perception of distance can be affected. They can show poor judgment in making decisions during the hours they are under the influence of LSD.
Users can even become convinced that they are invincible. As a result of this delusion they may do something they wouldn't attempt while sober, such as trying to fly - with disastrous results.
People have injured or killed themselves by walking in front of a vehicle while tripping on acid. More than one person has killed him or herself by falling from a window or a rooftop while under this drug's influence. Driving and using LSD definitely do not mix, and users have been involved in car accidents after taking the drug.
LSD and Mental Illness
Using LSD can't cause a person to become mentally ill. If this drug is taken in combination with other substances, it can trigger a symptoms resembling psychosis in some people. When a person who already has mental health issues, such as schizophrenia, uses acid, the drug may exacerbate the symptoms of the disorder, which include hallucinations.
A person with schizophrenia may experience visual hallucinations as part of the disorder. The majority of people with this disorder experience auditory hallucinations. The auditory hallucinations can include voices inside the individual's head as well as those that come from outside. Using LSD can lead to the onset of symptoms in an individual who is going to develop schizophrenia anyway.
Flashbacks and LSD Use
Flashbacks or the random reliving of an aspect of a psychedelic drug experience are often cited as a common side-effect of hallucinogenic drugs, especially LSD. Physicians now refer to this as a condition known as Hallucinogen Persisting Perception Disorder (HPPD). HPPD only appears to manifest in a small percentage of (perhaps heavy) users.
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