LSD, also known by its street name, acid, is a hallucinogen that is most commonly sold as small squares of paper, but also as liquid or pellets. It’s tasteless and odorless. The abbreviation LSD comes from Lysergsaure-Diathylamid, the German version of its chemical name.
LSD was discovered by accident in the late 1930s by a man named Albert Hofmann.
How and Why Do People Take LSD?
Like many hallucinogens, LSD is most commonly taken in a quiet and controlled environment. However, some people take LSD in place of more expensive party drugs, like ecstasy, at raves, festivals, concerts, and parties.
When someone takes LSD, it distorts the world around them. Someone that has just taken LSD may be very in their head and act quieter than usual. Every person’s experience with LSD is unique, as the effects feed off the person’s imagination.
People take LSD in search of what’s called a “good trip”, or a positive experience. A good LSD trip can make a person feel in awe of everything around them, euphoric, and empathetic to other people.
What Are the Risks of Taking LSD?
LSD is often considered to be a “safe” drug as there is very little chance of overdosing on it and normal use doesn’t pose any long-term physical damage. That doesn’t mean it’s without risks.
While most people take LSD hoping for a good trip, bad trips happen as well. A bad trip can bring about terrifying hallucinations, or make the person feel panicked, paranoid, or even aggressive. This can cause the person to act unpredictably and do things they wouldn’t consider doing otherwise, like drive high, start a fight, try to fly, or commit suicide.
Anyone with existing mental health issues is advised against taking LSD, as the drug may exacerbate these issues, both in the short and long term.
Apart from what it does to your mind and body, there are legal risks to taking LSD. It’s listed as an illegal Schedule I drug in the USA, defined as “a drug with no currently accepted medical use and a high potential for abuse”.
Is LSD Addictive?
There has been no evidence to show that the drug itself is addictive. Just like any other drug, however, the body builds up a tolerance to it over time, and higher doses are required to achieve the same effect as before.
In fact, the human body often builds a tolerance to LSD faster than most other drugs. After just a few days of repeated use, a user will need a much higher dose to get the same high.