While hallucinogens are a popular drug due to the hallucinogenic “trips” people can experience under their influence, they also carry a host of dangerous side effects, and many are illegal and addictive.
Though the use of hallucinogens in recent years has been relatively low in the United States compared to in days gone by, hallucinogen abuse and addiction remains a widespread problem. In a 2013 study, more than 229,000 Americans reported having used LSD in the past month, and 33,000 reported using PCP. Salvia, ayahuasca and other hallucinogens have also maintained a popular presence in recent years.
The Phoenix Recovery Center is here to help if you or a loved one is struggling with hallucinogen abuse or addiction. Read on to learn more about the many types of hallucinogens, their side effects, and treatment options, or contact us today to get started on the road to recovery.
What are Hallucinogens?
There are many different types of hallucinogens, both naturally occurring and synthetic, but all have the same general effects on people. Hallucinogens are drugs that alter their users’ perception of reality, sometimes by impacting their awareness of what is around them as well as their thoughts and feelings, and other times by causing hallucinations, in which people experience images and sensations that feel real but are not.
Hallucinogens have been used by people for hundreds of years for various purposes, including religious ceremonies, but they are also commonly abused for their hallucinogenic effects. But just what are hallucinogens? A hallucinogen is a chemical substance that can be found in plants and mushrooms but also in liquids, powders, pills, and capsules.
Types of Hallucinogens
According to the National Institute on Drug Abuse (NIDA), these are some common hallucinogens:
- DMT — Dimethyltryptamine; a chemical that can be found in Amazonian plants or created in a lab; also known as Dimitri.
- Ayahuasca — A tea made from several Amazonian plants that contain DMT; also known as Hoasca, Aya, and Yagé.
- LSD — D-lysergic acid diethylamide; a power mood-changing chemical derived from a fungus grown on grains such as rye; also known as Acid, Blotter, Dots, and Yellow Sunshine.
- Peyote — Mescaline; derived from a small and spineless cactus, but can also be made synthetically; also known as Buttons, Cactus, and Mesc.
- Psilocybin — 4-phosphoryloxy-N,N-dimethyltryptamine; a chemical found in many mushrooms from tropical and subtropical regions of the United States, Mexico, and South America; also known as Little Smoke, Magic Mushrooms, Purple Passion, and Shrooms.
- DXM — Dextromethorphan; found in some over-the-counter medicines for colds and coughs; also known as Robo.
- Ketamine — Used as an anesthetic for surgery on animals and humans; also known as K, Special K, and Cat Valium.
- PCP — Phencyclidine; previously used as a general anesthetic for surgical procedures but no longer is due to its side effects; also known as Angel Dust, Hog, Love Boat, and Peace Pill
- Salvia — Salvia divinorum; a plant found in southern Mexico as well as South and Central America; also known as Diviner’s Sage, Maria Pastora, Sally-D, and Magic Mint