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Is it true that psychedelics can trigger mental illness?

The answer to this question is not a simple yes or no, however for the average person with no emotional or psychological problems or any family history of mental illness the answer is surely an un-equivocal no.



The answer to this question is not a simple yes or no, however for the average person with no emotional or psychological problems or any family history of mental illness the answer is surely an un-equivocal no. As we move in the direction of individuals with mental problems such as paranoia or schizophrenia the answer to the question becomes a bit more vague. The best recommendation for people with mental problems of any type is to abstain from indulgence in magic mushrooms. As for during the experience people can "act" insane to an outside observer and return feeling as though nothing were awry.

Responses to the hallucinogens depend on several factors, including the user's expectations, his ability to cope with perceptual distortions, and the setting. Untoward reactions (anxiety attacks, extreme apprehensiveness, or panic states) to psilocybin mushrooms are quite rare. Most often, these reactions quickly subside with appropriate management in a secure setting. This is why trip sitter is recommended. However, some persons (especially after using LSD) remain disturbed and may show a persistent psychotic state. Whether drug use has precipitated or uncovered a preexisting psychotic potential or can produce this state in a previously stable person is yet unresolved.

Some persons, especially those who are long-term or repeat users of hallucinogenic drugs (particularly LSD), may experience apparent drug effects long after they have discontinued drug use. These episodes (flashbacks) most commonly consist of visual illusions but can include distortions of virtually any sensation (including self-image or perceptions of time or space) and hallucinations. Flashbacks can be precipitated by use of marijuana, alcohol, or barbiturates or by stress or fatigue or can occur without apparent reason. The mechanisms of flashbacks are not known. Flashbacks tend to subside within 6 to 12 months.

Sources:

The Merck Manual of Diagnosis and Therapy

Working With Difficult Psychedelic Experiences

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