LSD is a psychedelic drug with a bad reputation perpetuated by media and government propaganda, and exaggerated reports of rare cases with negative outcomes. Reckless or inappropriate use of any drug, whether prescribed or used recreationally, can cause harmful effects. LSD is no exception. However, studies have shown there is no concrete evidence linking responsible use of LSD to mental or long-term health problems.
While people suffering from pre-existing neurological or psychological disorders may experience adverse and long-lasting side-effects, it is actually a safe, non-addictive substance for the majority of people. Contrary to popular belief, there wasn’t a prevalence of acid casualties from the sixties leaving people walking around in decades of distorted reality. This article serves to debunk the common myths surrounding the use of LSD.
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Myth 1: LSD causes cognitive decline and insanity
Taking LSD will leave you mentally impaired for the rest of your life or throw you into a never-ending world of insanity. This has been mainly popularized through movies where taking LSD can cause you to end up a vegetable or leave your brain “permafried”.
People with a predisposition to mental illness or developmental disorders who are exposed to any kind of mind-altering drug, run the risk of triggering a form of psychosis. Any dosage could probably push them over the edge. For the most part, healthy people who are not predisposed to mental illness, can take a high dose of LSD once or over a period of time and be unscathed by the experience.
Myth 2: LSD stays in your system forever
LSD remains in the body or is permanently stored in your spinal fluid and randomly released putting you into an uncontrollable spin for the rest of your life. This is one of the strangest LSD myths because no drug has ever been known to stay in your body forever.
If you take cannabinoids, it can take longer to leave the body because it is fat soluble. But LSD is water soluble and metabolized quicker. Although drug metabolism depends on the user’s age, weight, and general system metabolism, LSD is eliminated from the body after several hours. In fact, most opioids stay in the system longer than LSD.
Drug tests can detect LSD in urine, blood, or hair samples only if the test is performed in a few hours after taking it. LSD has a half-life of between 3 to 5 hours and 50% is expelled within 5 hours after last using it. LSD will usually be present in the bloodstream for up to 12 hours at most. Definitely not forever.
Myth 3: LSD is a party drug only
LSD is used as a recreational or party drug only. It is taken as a club drug to keep you dancing and partying all night long.
Yes, LSD has been taken as a party drug but that’s not its only purpose. Psychedelics have and continue to be used for medicinal treatments. It has shown to provide several benefits when used in a controlled environment. LSD is used to treat anxiety, depression, migraines, as well as alleviate alcohol and drug dependencies.
Besides being highly effective as a treatment, it is also often taken to enhance cognitive functions and develop social behaviors that can help improve the overall quality of life.
Myth 4: LSD causes mental birth defects
LSD can cause genetic damage and developmental abnormalities in fetuses. Taking LSD while pregnant can lead to spontaneous abortions, chromosomal abnormalities, or congenital malformations in unborn children.
Clinical studies prove that alcoholism and amphetamine abuse do cause fetal alcohol syndrome and contribute to poor pregnancy outcomes as they are addictive neurotoxins. LSD is neither. While it’s not advisable to take any drug while pregnant, LSD has no lasting or toxic effect that contributes to chromosomal mutations.
Any reported genetic abnormalities of LSD users are mostly related to other extenuating factors rather than the use of pure LSD. Pregnant women who take LSD are inclined to have unhealthier and riskier lifestyles that pose risks to the well-being of the mother and the unborn child.
Myth 5: LSD is the key to eternal happiness
A very common myth is that LSD is the answer to all of life’s problems. LSD makes you more spiritually aware, and will uncover your subconscious and promote self-discovery leading to a loving and happier life.
LSD does heighten senses, creates a feeling of one with the universe, and may even offer deep personal insight. Taking LSD can trigger different ways of thinking, but it is not the key to unlocking the subconscious of your mind or the universe. It is unrealistic to think that LSD creates a Utopian way of life and gives you a full understanding of everything that has happened or will happen in future.
Although the benefits of psychedelics have been harnessed to overcome problems like depression or substance abuse, or enrich brain activity to boost creative thinking, there are frightening and dangerous side-effects when misused or taken in inappropriate circumstances. Microdosing is a safe way to ingest micrograms of LSD to achieve positive results of connectedness with more balance, focus, and energy.
It is not considered to be addictive like heroin or cocaine, but users can develop a tolerance that requires them to increase their dose. Taking an abnormal high dose can cause people to have a ‘bad trip’, which can lead to harmful results. Unmonitored and careless use triggers the negative responses of paranoia, panic, heart palpitations, and upsetting hallucinations.