Hallucinogenic drugs have been around for a long time. It has been discovered that fossil evidence shows humans have used psychoactive plants for 10,000 years during ritual ceremonies.
Just like the majority of drugs, in their infancy, they intended to help aid in human sickness or ailments of sorts. And just like everything, there has to be trial and error, experimentation over time to see results. A lot of these drugs that were meant to cure sickness or other issues ended up being depended on and eventually an addiction.
What Are Hallucinogenic Drugs?
The definition of Hallucinogens according to the National Institute on Drug Abuse (NIDA) is that hallucinogens are a diverse group of drugs that alter a person’s awareness of their surroundings as well as their thoughts and feelings. They are commonly split into two categories: classic hallucinogens (such as LSD) and dissociative drugs (such as PCP). Both types of hallucinogens can cause hallucinations or sensations and images that seem real though they are not. Additionally, dissociative drugs can cause users to feel out of control or disconnected from their bodies and environment.
Hallucinogens or dissociative drugs were popular in the ’60s and 70’s around Woodstock. When everyone was for “free love” and trying to free their minds and experimenting with hallucinogens. Such drugs as:
- Psilocybin (magic mushrooms)
- Peyote (mescaline)
- Ketamine (Special K)
- PCP (phencyclidine)
Even though they are in two separate categories, both hallucinogens and dissociative drugs can cause hallucinations or sensations and images that seem real though they are not. But, dissociative drugs, such as PCP, can put those using them and those around in dangerous, even deadly situations due to the user feeling out of control or disconnected from their body and environment.
According to the National Institute on Drug Abuse (NIH), PCP (Phencyclidine) was developed in the 1950s as a general anesthetic for surgery, but it is no longer used for this purpose due to the serious side effects. PCP can be found in a variety of forms, including tablets or capsules; however, liquid and white crystal powder are the most common. PCP has various slang names, such as Angel Dust, Hog, Love Boat, and Peace Pill.
After the word got around town that PCP had some serious side effects and psychotic reactions production of it stopped and was only made illegally after the 1960s. It also wasn’t very popular with illicit drug users when it hit the streets in the 1960s due to its reputation for causing bad reactions.
Even though it wasn’t that popular doesn’t mean that nobody uses it. It is still made but nearly all PCP production is illegal and there is no standard for purity or dosage. As a result, there is no way to know how much is being taken, making its use particularly dangerous.
The Effects of PCP
So since there has been mostly bad “reviews” about this drug, what would make someone want to use it in the first place you wonder. When a person uses PCP, whether by smoking, injected, drank or eaten, they expect to feel a pleasant high and hallucinate. At first, the individual might feel happy, and how they see their surroundings may not be extreme hallucinations but there are changes to light, color, sound, and touch. The individual may lose the sense of time, either slowing down or speeding up, or they can feel out of or above their bodies. Any effects of PCP begin within 30-60 minutes after it has been ingested orally, or a few minutes if smoked or injected. Depending on the size and potency of the dose, effects can last for 4-6 hours or as long as 24 hours.
When a person takes PCP they will experience several side effects, which can be physically dangerous such as:
- Raised blood pressure
- Rapid or irregular heart rate
- Raised body temperature
- Increased respiration or gasping for air
- Nausea and vomiting
- Blurred vision
Because of the desired effects of PCP, it can be abused and used for long periods. Those who have gained an addiction will experience withdrawal symptoms after the drug wears off including:
- Memory loss or amnesia
- Depression and anxiety
- Drug cravings
- Fatigue or increased need for sleep
- Increased appetite
It is known that the effects of long-term PCP use include persistent speech difficulties, memory loss, depression, suicidal thoughts, anxiety, and social withdrawal that may persist for a year or more after chronic use stops.
Allure Detox is Here to Help with PCP Addiction
We at Allure Detox know how difficult it is to start detox and addiction treatment because of the fears, pain, and the uncomfortably that comes with it. At Allure Detox, our team of experienced professionals, in conjunction with our highly personalized detox treatment plan, will help you get through this phase of withdrawal with a high-level of comfort. We want to make this process as comfortable as possible, while also ensuring a smooth transition to your next step in sobriety.