Head Games: Drugs of Abuse – Hallucinogens (Marijuana and LSD)

Hallucinogens (Marijuana and LSD)

Introduction

Marijuana is the drug that produces the “dumb” high. It is composed of crushed leaves, stems and flowers of the female hemp plant and is smoked or orally consumed in baked goods. Hashish is the resin from flowers and leaves and is more potent than marijuana. It is also smoked or cooked. Marijuana contains over 420 chemicals and marijuana smoke contains over 2,000 chemicals that are highly carcinogenic (cancer causing). LSD (Lysergic Acid Diethylamide) is a semi-synthetic drug derived from ergot (grain fungus), is the most potent of the commonly used drugs and causes flashbacks for weeks or months after the last use. LSD could be taken orally as a tablet or as a liquid, snorted, smoked, inhaled, injected or blotted in the eye. LSD also produces panic and psychotic reactions.

Slang/Street Names

Marijuana: Grass, pot, joint, hemp, weed, reefer, smoke, Mary Jane, ganja, gold, J, locoweed, hash, hash oil, weed oil, weed juice, hash brownies, hash tea and dope.

LSD: Acid, cubes, purple haze, peace pill, hits, blotters, tabs, doses, window-pane, sunshine, LBJ, blue heaven, big D, microdots, sugar, mellow yellow.

Pharmacokinetics

For Marijuana and LSD alike, the precise mechanism of action is not known, however, for LSD the key neurotransmitter in the brain affected involved appears to be serotonin.

Symptoms and Side Effects of Abuse/Dependence

Acute effects of Marijuana abuse produce a calm and mildly euphoric state, where senses are said to be heightened, and in some cases, hallucinations are said to occur. Psychomotor retardation occurs as well as a distorted perception of time. Users also report an increased appetite after use of Marijuana. Users may demonstrate reduced inhibition, conjunctival injection (red eyes) and dry mouth and in some cases, panic reactions. Chronic use of marijuana could lead to a lack of concern about physical well-being, resulting in malnutrition and dehydration.

Acute effects of LSD include having distorted perceptions and hallucinations as well as distortions in time and space, illusions and mystical experiences. Users of LSD also demonstrate hypertension, rapid heartbeat, dilated pupils, sweating, flushing, chills, hyperventilation, incoordination, muscle weakness as well as confusion, restlessness, excitement, anxiety, panic, mania and paranoia from a “bad trip.” Chronic users also demonstrate depression and personality changes with long-term use of LSD.

Withdrawal and Overdose

Although there is no withdrawal effects from the use of Marijuana or LSD, users of LSD may experience convulsions, hyperthermia and possibly death as a result of overdose.

If you are struggling and abusing hallucinogens,  please consider asking others for help, by clicking here.

Other HEAD GAMES Drugs of Abuse:

Alcohol

Amphetamines

Cocaine

Opiates

Sedative/Hypnotics


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