Bad Trip on Acid

In the 1960s, LSD became a popular drug for recreational use and was legal in in the U.S. until October 1968, when it then became a controlled substance. Bad acid trips usually include thoughts of dying, intense paranoia and ideation of superhuman powers, such as flying or flotation. While wildly exaggerated during the popular use of LSD in the late 1960s and 1970s, actual bad trips are proven to be less than 1 in 1000.

What Causes Bad Acid Trips?

Overdosing on LSD most frequently explains a user’s bad trip. A common dose is small, compared to other drugs, about 100-500 micrograms. And most users are not actually aware of how large a dose they have done. Furthermore, LSD is oftentimes manufactured in less structured environments and may not actually be the drug that users believe they are taking. Bad trips are also attributed to the conditions under which the person takes LSD. Because it increases mood to intense levels, those who are depressed or undergoing mental anguish should avoid taking LSD as the experience can intensify their feelings of despair and hopelessness. Such negative emotions are most frequently the symptoms of a bad trip, along with paranoia about dying or actually believing they are, in fact, experiencing death.

What You Should Do for a Bad Trip

Those who are experience a bad LSD trip should be taken to an emergency room, where medical personnel can effectively treat them. Use caution with someone who is having a bad trip. They are most likely hallucinating and may attempt to jump from a moving car or believe that you are going to harm them. They should be talked to in a calm voice and movement toward them should be calm and slow. Use deep breathing techniques to keep them from panic. A bad LSD trip can last as long as 6-12 hours; however, most symptoms will dissipate within 24 hours.