Some hallucinogens are addictive, but others are not. While many of the drugs that fit into this class are still Schedule I substances, it can be difficult to know which of them are actually addictive in nature.
Addictive vs. Nonaddictive Hallucinogens
According to the Center for Substance Abuse Research, “Though tolerance to LSD develops rapidly, it does not produce compulsive drug-seeking behavior that is typical of addictive drugs, such as crack and heroin.” This is because of several reasons, including:
- The tolerance LSD creates is so intense and rapid, there is no point in abusing the drug repeatedly.
- The drug has a long duration of effects and, therefore, is not usually purchased and abused on a rapid basis like crack or heroin.
- The hallucinations created by LSD are very powerful and can cause users to take time away from the drug to recover from them.
- There is no way of knowing if LSD will cause a person to experience a bad trip, even if the individual has used it before.
For these reasons, LSD is not considered an addictive drug. Other hallucinogens are actually considered nonaddictive as well for the same set of reasons, including:
- Psilocybin mushrooms (also called psychedelic mushrooms)
However, some hallucinogens can cause addictive symptoms, such as compulsive use, drug-seeking behavior, continued abuse despite serious issues in the individual’s life that stem from their drug use, and other dangerous results. These drugs include:
- MDMA (also known as ecstasy or molly)
Finally, there is currently not enough information on certain psychedelics, like salvia divinorum, to prove whether they are addictive or not.
Are Nonaddictive Hallucinogens Safe to Use?
Just because a drug will not cause an addiction syndrome––as far as the medical and scientific communities are currently aware––does not mean it is safe to use. Any of the nonaddictive drugs listed above can cause a number of dangerous side effects as well as increase the risk of the user experiencing serious psychological disorders. For example, LSD, peyote, and psilocybin mushrooms can all cause:
- Increased body temperature, heartbeat, and blood pressure
- Blurry vision
- An adverse reaction or a bad trip resulting in anxiety, panic, delusions, paranoia, rapid mood swings, dissociation, identity loss, fear, homicidal or suicidal behavior, severe accidents, self-mutilation, and seizures
Ayahuasca and salvia can also cause severe vomiting, as well as intense psychological side effects while the drug is affecting the individual and even after in the form of flashbacks. It is always dangerous to use psychedelics recreationally because these drugs are all extremely unpredictable, whether a specific one is addictive or not.
Will I Need Treatment for Hallucinogen Abuse?
If you begin to notice side effects of your hallucinogen use, you should seek treatment. These drugs can be very intense and cause a number of serious side effects. It is important to seek help from a medical professional if you have been abusing them regularly and to especially do so if the substance you were taking is addictive in nature.
If you would like to learn more about hallucinogens or find a treatment center in your area, call 800-411-9312 (Who Answers?) today.
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