As the use of psychedelic medication grows, more of those looking to take use these treatment options are looking for information on the withdrawal symptoms of hallucinogens and psychedelic drugs.
And the interest is only trending upward. With MDMA going through FDA clinical trials, Johns Hopkins recent studies on Psilocybin, Ayahuasca and LSD becoming more popular, and Ibogaine growing as a treatment for addiction, psychedelics seem to be taking center stage in the drug treatment world.
But what are the side effects of these drugs, are there any withdrawal symptoms of hallucinogens, psychedelics, and other psychoactive drugs, and what should we expect from using these psychedelic medicines? Let’s take a closer look at these psychedelic medications and what to expect from them. First we will look at the withdrawal symptoms from use, then we will look at some of the side effects.
Do Hallucinogens have Withdrawal Symptoms?
The truth is, hallucinogens are non-addictive substances with a low potential for abuse. Using these psychoactive substances occasionally will not create addiction and will not produce any withdrawal symptoms, depending on the purity of the drug.
MDMA, in the form of Ecstasy, is the only substance on this list that can cause addiction and withdrawal symptoms. However, this is not from the MDMA itself, but from the drugs that MDMA is often mixed with to create street Ecstasy. Usually, Ecstasy has cocaine or methamphetamine mixed with MDMA to create the stimulating effects–both of which are highly addictive drugs with a high potential for abuse.
After taking psychedelic medicine, many individuals may experience what they may call “withdrawal symptoms”–fatigue, restlessness, sweating, etc. However, these symptoms usually go away after the drug has been completely cleared out of the system and the body has had a chance to replenish the natural chemicals that may be drained from using psychedelics.
These are not withdrawal symptoms, but merely recuperation after using these hallucinogens. Withdrawal symptoms are caused by changes to the brain chemistry from abuse.
If abused, many of these drugs can cause a psychological addiction. This means that life can become boring and the individual can lose their desire to do day-to-day activities. This psychological addiction can cause psychological withdrawal symptoms, however, these are often much easier to overcome as they do not come with the haunting physical withdrawal symptoms that can follow getting off heroin, opiates, or other strong addictive drugs that massively alter brain functionality.
Side Effects of Psychedelic Drugs
Side effects are different than withdrawal symptoms. Withdrawal symptoms come from addiction, side effects come from using a drug even once.
Psychedelic drugs are among the safest drugs in the world. One study even showed psilocybin to be the safest recreational drug. Because these drugs have a low potential for abuse, and because they come with a very low toxicity, these drugs have very few side effects.
Physical side effects are:
- Trouble sleeping
- Generally feeling “out of it”
These are the common physical side effects of psychedelic drugs.
However, keep in mind, street Ecstasy does not fit into this category as it is often mixed with other, much more dangerous, drugs.
Where these drugs can be dangerous is in their psychological side effects–especially for those with a family or personal history with psychological issues.
In these cases, psychedelic and hallucinogenic drugs can lead to long or short term psychosis, and can also trigger deep psychological issues within the individual.
For healthy individuals this is highly unlikely, however, there is always a chance that underlying health issues are unknown and can be triggered.
These are the most commonly dangerous side effects of psychedelic drugs.
Using Psychedelic and Hallucinogenic Drugs Safely
Before using any drug, always take precautions. Know what you are doing and prepare yourself mentally. Using psychedelic drugs illegally can be dangerous, and taking psychedelic medicine in a non-medical setting can increase risk of complications, especially from the psychedelic experience itself.
Many will choose to take these drugs on their own, or with friends. Never feel pressured to do this. If you are planning to take these drugs, make sure you are as prepared as possible and do your best to ensure the drugs you take are pure and reputable. Many dangerous outcomes from using illicit drugs come from taking the wrong drugs or drugs that have not been made properly.
Always educate yourself before making any decisions that could lead to long-term negative results.
Stay safe out there.