Hallucinogens: How are Hallucinogenic Drugs Taken?
Hallucinogens: How are Hallucinogenic Drugs Taken? | AToN Center

Hallucinogens: How are Hallucinogenic Drugs Taken?

Hallucinogen drugs can be taken in different ways depending on what type of hallucinogen drugs you are taking. The most common ways to take hallucinogens include swallowing as liquid, swallowing as a tablet, consuming raw, or brewing in tea.

What are Hallucinogens?

Hallucinogens are a psychedelic drug that alters the mind and body, often resulting in certain health effects including feelings of disconnect, euphoria and delusions. Hallucinogenic drugs can be categorized in two ways: dissociative drugs (for example PCP) or classic hallucinogens (such as LSD). Both types of hallucinogens may cause sensations or images that seem real and are not, such as hallucinations.

Although hallucinogen drugs are not used as heavily as alcohol or opioids in the U.S, hallucinogens are often taken with other substances which could contribute to drug addiction or dependence. Studies show that these drugs can cause health problems such as long-term changes in mood or people becoming addicted to them.

How are Hallucinogens Taken?

Hallucinogens can be taken in different ways depending on the type of drugs you are taking. For example, LSD can be taken by absorbing through the lining of the mouth using drug-soaked paper pieces. Below are the most common ways to take the hallucinogenic drugs:

  • DMT– can be brewed into a tea, inhaled, vaporized, or smoked
  • LSD– swallowed as a tablet or pill or also a liquid, or absorbed through paper liners
  • Peyote– swallowed as a liquid, brewed into a tea, or eaten raw or dried
  • Psilocybin– eaten raw or dried, or brewed into a tea
  • DXM- swallowed as a tablet or also a liquid
  • Ketamine snorted, swallowed as a tablet, pill or also a liquid
  • PCP- swallowed as a tablet or pill, snorted, injected, inhaled, vaporized or also smoked
  • Salvia- brewed into a tea, eaten raw or dried, inhaled, vaporized or smoked

Types of Hallucinogen Drugs

The most common types of hallucinogens include:


LSD is a very powerful substance that alters a person’s mind. It can be found as a white or clear substance that is made from lysergic acid, found in a fungus that grows grains or rye. It is typically odorless.


PCP drugs were originally used as an anesthetic medicine in patients. It was later determined that despite being used as medicine, it could be harmful to your health and potentially addictive. PCP has various slang names, such as Angel Dust, Hog, Love Boat, and Peace Pill.


It can be classified as a hallucinogen because of the way it makes people feel when they take it. Hallucinogens can include THC (tetrahydrocannabinol), which may be found in hash oil ,hash or marijuana.


Psilocybin comes from certain types of mushrooms found in subtropical and tropical regions of Mexico, South America and the U.S. Typical names for psilocybin include shrooms, magic mushrooms and little smoke.

Effects of Hallucinogens

There are both short-term health effects, and long-term health effects that can occur when taking hallucinogenic drugs. They include both mental health and physical health effects. Below are the most common health effects:


The most common short-term mental and physical health effects of the drug include:

  • Increased heart rate, body temperature, blood pressure or breathing rate
  • Loss of appetite
  • Spiritual experience
  • Dry mouth
  • Intense sensory feelings
  • Uncoordinated movements
  • Changes in how time passes (feels like time is going slow)
  • Sleep problems
  • Feelings of relaxation
  • Psychosis
  • Excessive sweating
  • Bizarre behaviors
  • Panic
  • Paranoia


The most common long-term mental and physical health effects of the drug include:

  • Visual disturbances
  • Disorganized thinking
  • Paranoia
  • Hallucinations
  • Mood changes
  • Flashbacks

Some research shows that the long-term effects of LSD include developing a tolerance to the drug. This means that a person needs to take a significantly higher dose of the drug in order to achieve the same effects. This can lead to addiction or other health concerns.

Mental Health Effects

The effects of hallucinogens on the developing brain are not fully understood, but they may increase the risk of triggering latent mental health concerns. Information has shown that classic hallucinogens work by temporarily making changes and disrupting certain communications between systems in the brain and the spinal cord. Some hallucinogens interfere with how the brain reacts to the brain chemical serotonin, which regulates:

  • Body temperature
  • Mood
  • Sensory perception
  • Intestinal muscle control
  • Sexual behavior
  • Hunger
  • Sleep

What hallucinogen drugs can do is affect the ability for the person who uses the drug to recognize reality, communicate, or think rationally. In short, it can cause a drug-induced psychosis, and one that is unpredictable.

Addiction to Hallucinogens

Like most drugs, using hallucinogens to excess can cause addiction to occur. Knowing the risks and signs, will help a person understand if getting professional treatment is necessary or not. If you are suffering from addiction to drugs, treatment might be a good option so that you can get clean or sober.

Drugs like LSD can cause a person to develop a tolerance to the drug. This means they need more and more to achieve the same results. So if you are wondering, “Is LSD addictive?” The answer is, it can be. Most drugs have the ability to cause addiction if they are taken frequently, and cause a tolerance to develop.

Signs of Addiction

Some of the major mental and physical signs of hallucinogen substance abuse include:

  • Having intense cravings
  • Needing to take the substance frequently, sometimes multiple times a day
  • Engaging in dangerous or harmful behaviors to get it such as stealing
  • A loss of interest in hobbies or things you used to like to do
  • Withdrawal symptoms upon discontinuing use
  • Hiding the substance or the fact that you are using
  • Trouble with responsibilities or normal tasks such as school or work

If you or someone you love is experiencing any of the above symptoms or has a problem with hallucinogens, please contact AToN Center for help right away.

Help at AToN Center

AToN Center is a drug and alcohol addiction treatment center located in beautiful San Diego, California. Our treatment services include detox care, trauma treatment, dual diagnosis, as well as both traditional 12-step programs and non-12 step programs.

Our staff are doctoral level and highly trained in addiction treatment. We treat all types of addiction including drugs, alcohol or other substance abuse. Our support team is among the best in addiction treatment, and they truly care about the well-being of all of our clients.

We understand the difficulties that come with abuse to drugs, and it may be hard to share your experience and struggles with someone else. We are here to help you every step of the way, and we have trained professionals who can help you achieve recovery from drugs or other substances

If you need help getting treatment support for hallucinogens, or other drugs, please contact AToN Center for more information on our programs

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