LSD: Reactions with other drugs or substances

Last modified: Sunday, 31. May 2009 - 4:56 pm

Little research has been conducted on how LSD interacts with other drugs. The most complete research is with antidepressant drugs because these commonly prescribed medications affect the same brain chemical, serotonin, that LSD does. There are three types of anti-depressants, and each interacts differently with LSD:
1. SSRI antidepressants, which include Prozac (fluoxetine), Zoloft (sertraline), and Paxil (paroxe-tine), usually decrease the effects of LSD when they are taken together. However, taking an SSRI antidepressant can bring on disturbing flashbacks in someone who has taken LSD in the past.
2. Tricyclic antidepressants, including Tofranil (imipramine) and Anafranil (clomipramine), usually intensify the effects of LSD.
3. MAOI antidepressants, such as Nardil (phenelzine), usually decrease the effects of LSD.
Interactions with other drugs have been less closely studied, but anecdotal reports suggest that lithium, a drug used to stabilize mood in people with manic depression or bipolar disorder, increases the response to LSD.
Alcohol can make the visual hallucinations associated with LSD decrease, and people taking LSD often feel they can drink more without getting drunk (a sensation that may not reflect reality).
Ecstasy is another hallucinogen and, like LSD, is popular in club settings. These two drugs are often combined at raves and concerts in a practice called “candy flipping.” Some people say that the good mood induced by taking ecstasy can decrease the risk of having a bad trip on LSD. On the other hand, both drugs are powerful hallucinogens and taking them together can create a very intense experience indeed. Often, the more intense the experience, the greater the risk of having a bad trip.
Marijuana can cause paranoia in many people. As a result, it is not considered a good mix with LSD because paranoia can bring on a bad trip. According to research conducted by the NIDA, the combination of LSD and marijuana may bring on psychosis in teenagers.

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