Research Paper on Hallucinogens
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Free Research Paper on Hallucinogens
Hallucinogens are substances that produce psychological effects which make one seem as though they are having a dream, a religious vision, or are schizophrenic. It changes the user’s perceptions, thoughts, and feelings. Effects of hallucinogens vary from person to person. The mode of action is still not clear to scientist; serotonin, epinephrine, or other neurotransmitters may be affected. Numerous factors can alter the effects of the hallucinogens including size, weight, health, how much of the drug is taken and how it is taken. The environment in which it is taken can also change how it effects someone; for example, if it is combined with alcohol or whether the person is alone or with others.
There are various different types of hallucinogens including LSD, mescaline, psilocybin (shrooms), and bufotenine (from the skin of toads). LSD is a hallucinogen which is completely organic however the more likely used form is produced synthetically. It is found in a fungus called the ergot fungus. Once taken, LSD can lat for 8-10 hours or even longer. Not only does it shift perceptions, but it can also lead one to express anger towards themselves or others.
Relapses, or flashbacks, can occur up to a year after the LSD has been ingested. Scientists have yet to find a clinical value for LSD. Mescaline, a chemical extracted from the peyote cactus, was first discovered in 1896. Many hallucinogens include auditory and visual side effects, however, mescaline usually only creates visual hallucinations.
Many times it also induces vomiting and causes nausea. Psilocybin, also known as shrooms, has numerous different effects which vary over time. Within the first half-hour, slight nausea occurs, along with muscle weakness, giddiness, and numbness. After about an hour, however, is when the more harsh symptoms tend to kick in such as vivid colors, strong sexual appetite, uncontrollable laughter, and a feeling known as synesthesias. Many know this effect simply as being able to “see sounds and hear colors.” This effect, although completely unintentional, is an anomaly in which scientists or human psychics take a strong liking toward. Shrooms tend to wear off within four to twelve hours depending on the circumstances of ingestion. Bufotenin is almost exactly similar to psilocybin in the ways it affects one’s body. It was used in tribes centuries ago as a medicine and a hallucinogen for tribal rituals.
Hallucinogens have been used by numerous as an anti-depressant and in some cases for medicinal purposes however, many produce long-term effects varying from spinal diseases to Parkinson’s disease and it is highly recommended to not abuse any hallucinogenic substance.