Searidge Foundation remains one of the best drug addiction treatment facilities in Canada. Located in rustic Nova Scotia, we offer individuals struggling with LSD dependency a variety of comprehensive and evidence-based addiction treatment services. At Searidge Foundation, our residents have access to individualized treatment plans catered to their unique needs. We offer some of the following services:
- LSD detoxifiation
- Treatment in a residential setting
- Intervention from LSD
- SMART Recovery
LSD – What is it?
Alt-text: This photo depicts a small, white square with four hearts evenly distributed within it. The small square is laying diagonally on a piece of aluminium foil; with a few crinkles.
Lysergic acid diethylamide (LSD) is an illicit hallucinogenic drug derived from ergot, a fungus. Originally created by Albert Hofmann, a Swiss researcher, it is a potent and powerful drug, and alter one’s perception of reality. In its purest form, it is a white, odourless powder. However, like many other drugs, it is often sold in many ways. For example, individuals can purchase small square papers that have been dipped in LSD or they can find it in a capsule or tablet form. In addition, it can be dissolved and sold in sugar cubes, gum, cookies, or other candies.
Individuals who use LSD chronically quickly develop a tolerance to its effects. Consequently, this requires a higher dose of the drug to produce the same effects. According to the research, addiction to LSD is very unlikely, however, an individual can develop a psychology dependency, especially if they are using the drug for avoidant purposes. Furthermore, because tolerance increases so quickly, individuals may continue to seek out higher doses of the drug. Over the long-term, this could be classified as a dependence.
Short-Term Effects of LSD
- Distorted perception of reality
- Enhanced senses (i.e., colours/sounds are more salient)
- Mix-up of senses (i.e., hearing colours, seeing sounds)
- Disassociation from body
- Impaired memory
- Impaired concentration
- Feeling weightless or heavy
- Significant and rapid changes in mood and thoughts
- Panic attacks
- High anxiety
Long-Term Effects of LSD
- Potential psychological disturbances in those with pre-existing or pre-disposed mental illness
- Occasional psychological dependence
The structure of LSD is like serotonin (5-HT). Therefore, researchers believe that the effects of the drug arise from interactions with 5-HT receptors throughout the brain. More specifically, research shows that LSD tends to interact with the brain’s 5-HT2B receptor, albeit the mechanisms are still poorly understood. However, research has shown that LSD promotes the release of glutamate in the cerebral cortex. Consequently, this provides excitation to the fourth and fifth layers of the cortex and likely produces the hallucinogenic effects associated with the drug. Like many other drugs, it has shown an interaction with dopamine receptors throughout the brain as well which may also explain its ability to produce psychotic-like symptoms.
Active Ingredient: Lysergic acid diethylamide
Synonyms: acid, lucky, blotter, dots, zen, hippie, purple heart
Legal status: Illegal
Routes of administration: Oral
Leading cause of drug-associated mortality: n/a
- Canadian Centre on Substance Use and Addiction (2018)
- Nichols DE (2004). “Hallucinogens”. Pharmacology & Therapeutics. 101 (2): 131–81. doi:10.1016/j.pharmthera.2003.11.002. PMID 14761703.
Meta-data: This webpage provides a comprehensive overview of LSD, addiction to LSD, and available treatment at Searidge Foundation.
Key words: LSD, acid, addiction, treatment, drug