Hallucinogens are drugs that alter the user’s mind, so they get reality and truth all mixed up. PCP, LSD and “magic” mushroom, are a few types. Not tolong ago, in 1993, there was a report that said that hallucinogens caused almost 10,000 hospital emergency room cases and about 200 deaths. In 1991 a survey said that 90 percent of high school students disapproved of using these drugs. In 1996, the same survey was taken, but only 80 percent of the students disagreed. Indeed, these drugs are on the rise.

There are two classes of side effects. The immediate ones include: chills, distorted senses, acute panic, rapid breathing, sense of well-being, nausea, and shaking, When using a hallucinogen, one will go on a “trip.” It can be a good one or a bad one. The long-term effects include revisiting one of these trips, or hallucinations. It may be a good one, so the user will have no problem. On the other hand, it may be a bad trip, in this case the person will probably be living under a spell of never-ending paranoia. These trips may cause drowning, burns, car crashes, and falls. Some result in death.

Some of these hallucinogens are found in plants. Mescaline is from peyote, a type of cactus. Also, some mushrooms that occur in nature are hallucinogens. Many of them are made of chemicals that do not occur in nature such as LSD, PCP, MDMA (ecstasy), and MDA.

These drugs are found in “candy-like” forms. Some, like ecstasy, have cartoons or cute pictures on them to trick users. Others are in the form of a fruit roll up type. Some are also in the form of sweet tarts candy dots, and lest we forget the mushrooms!

Treatment is usually in the form of rehab, detoxification, personal counseling, and group therapy.

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