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How Drugs Work

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Drug Information

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LSD

LSD, acid, trips, blotters, cardboard

Alcoholic Drinks

Common names

LSD, acid, trips, blotters, cardboard, or identified by their printed design such as smileys, strawbs or strawberries, batman, flying keys, and many more.

Generic name

Lyserge.

Scientific name

Lysergic acid diethylamide.

Action

Psychedelic.

Drug form

Most commonly as small (5mm x 5mm) squares of absorbent card printed with a colourful design (video). More rarely as tiny tablets (microdots).

Drug effects

Desired:

Hallucinations, hilarity.

Side-effects:

Confusion, disorientation, loss of coordination, distortions in time and space.

Drug risks

Short-term:

Accidents, anxiety, emotional distress or bad trip.

Long-term:

Release or triggering of underlying psychologocal problem, flashbacks.

Medical use

None.

Legal status

Class A under the Misuse of Drugs Act 1971.

How is it taken?

Orally.

Paraphernalia

None.

Images

Video of what LSD looks like.
LSD is most often found as very small blotting paper squares.

Where does it come from?

Usually it is illicitly manufactured in Britain or Europe. There was an increase in the availability and use of LSD during the mid-1980s, along with other psychedelic drugs like ecstasy associated with the rave scene. LSD availability decreased towards the end of the 1990s.

It is cheap (around 2 each, 1995), easy both to conceal and to use which makes it popular with many young people.

Helping services

It is rare for drug counselling agencies to see people with problems caused by their LSD use although parents and relatives often contact such drug services for information about the drug. Occasionally users will contact services after experiencing a flashback.