What To Do If You Are Having A Bad Trip

What are Hallucinogens?

Hallucinogens, also known as “psychedelics” are “mind manifesting” substances. There are two kinds:
1. Man made

– Ketamine

2. Natural (plant or mushroom)

– Psilocybin mushroom (magic mushroom)
– Ayahuasca (DMT)
– Salvia
– Jimsonweed

Hallucinogens are both synthetic and natural (found in plants and mushrooms). When ingested they can cause visual, auditory and textile hallucinations. They can alter states of consciousness, emotions and thought. Seeing and feeling things that aren’t real is also a common reaction to hallucinogenics. This happens when there is a disruption in communication between neurotransmitter systems within the brain and spinal cord.

The brain and spinal cord regulate mood, sensory perception, sleep, hunger, body temperature and muscle control. This is why the feelings of hallucinogenics can be extremely intense, and potentially cause a bad trip. There are two sides to everything, and this applies to drugs too. An individual can experience either extreme feelings of euphoria or pain and fear when partaking in psychedelics.

What is a Bad Trip?

What is a Bad Trip?

It can be scary and extremely dangerous when having a bad trip. Specifically with drugs such as acid. An individual having a bad trip on acid can be stuck in a “loop” of negative thoughts and visual images. This can last twelve hours until the effects begin to ware off.

When you are bad tripping you may feel:

 – Terrifying thoughts
 – Fear of loosing control or going insane
 – self-doubt and/or hate
 – fear and despair
 – Fear of death/ facing death 

Symptoms of Psychedelic Overdose Include:

 – sleepiness
 – Increased heart rate
 – Dizziness
 – Weakness
 – Numbness
 – Loss of appetite
 – Dry mouth
 – Tremors
 – Sweating 

What’s the Cause of a Bad Trip?

Psychedelics can bring up repressed feelings of emotions that haven’t been dealt with. This can be overwhelming and trigger a bad trip. A bad trip can also be caused by these 6 factors:

  1. Taking too high of a dose
  2. Being in a negative mindset before taking the drug (sad, depressed, anxious)
  3. Being in a hectic environment and becoming overstimulated
  4. Using alcohol while under the influence of psychedelics
  5. Not drinking enough water
  6. Taking the drug alone

What To Do If You Are Having a Bad Trip

Change your environment

When caught in a loop, it can be helpful to do a reset. Changing your surroundings can help change your thoughts. Try moving to a different room, adjusting the lighting or going inside or outside for a change in climate. Once you are settled in a space you feel good in try turning on some peaceful or joyful music that will help lift your mood.

Find Ways To Entertain Yourself

Finding an activity that focuses your thoughts can help prevent yourself from going further into the cycle of negative thought patterns. Some things to do to keep your self occupied is

  • Listen to music
  • Singing
  • Dancing
  • Writing
  • Arts and crafts
  • watching uplifting or funny TV or movies

If possible, try to set up various activities around your house before taking the psychedelics. This way you already have lots of stimulants surrounding you in case you feel yourself getting overwhelmed by your thoughts. A simple set of markers and some blank paper can do the trick!

Communicate to Your Peers

If you are feeling down or struggling it’s good to inform your friends so you can receive support. If your friends are also tripping try not to speak too specifically on the negative thoughts you are having. This can trigger a bad trip for someone else. Instead, what you can do is: 

  • Talk to one another about light-hearted subjects
  • Try and create laughter
  • If comfortable, have some kind of physical touch such as holding hands, hugging or cuddling. Physical touch is known to be extremely soothing and cause the body to release feel good hormones such as dopamine.

Consider having a “trip guide” or a sober person present

This can be good for times when you are feeling sad or confused and need comfort. A trip guide can also be great for helping guide thoughts and conversation to help you stay on a positive vibe.

Long Term Effects of Psychedelics

Bad tripping or frequently taking large quantities of psychedelics can leave you with side effects for months after your last trip. Side effects can be:

  • Recurring auditory and/or visual flashbacks
  • Paranoia or delusion
  • Dissociating from yourself and your environment

If you or a loved one is suffering from the negative side effects of a bad trip, it may be beneficial to receive inpatient treatment for support. Reach out to a rehabilitation facility near you for information on the treatment programs and counselor support available. 

Clinical data and research of many years verify that MAT is the most efficacious method to treat opioid addiction. A research study shows that MAT results in a significant increase in patient’s adherence to the medications being used in the treatment and also reduce the illegal opioid use when compared to non-MAT approaches.

White Oak Recovery Center is a rehabilitation center that offers detox programs in Los Angeles. If you or someone you know is suffering from a drug addiction in California please call White Oak Recovery Center at +1 844-955-2489. Psychedelics can be seriously harmful and possibly fatal.