Acid, trips, tabs-LSD is known by many names and is synonymous with stories past decades. It is still commonly used (relative to other illegal drugs) and so is a relevant drug for youth workers to know and understand.

WHAT

LSD (lysergic acid diethylamide) is an illegal hallucinogen commonly referred to as ‘acid’.

OTHER NAMES

Acid, window, trips, tripper, tab, stars, smilies, rainbows, paper mushrooms, micro-dot, Lucy, liquid acid, lightning flash, L, hawk, flash, drop, dots, cheer, blotter.

HOW COMMON IS USAGE?

In 2010, 8.8 per cent of Australians aged over 14 years had used hallucinogens other than cannabis and ecstasy (National Drug Strategy Household Survey, 2010).

APPEARANCE

Tiny squares of paper decorated with pictures, liquid in a vial, or a pellet. 

USE

Swallowed or absorbed through the skin.

EFFECTS

Distortion of objects and reality, including visual and auditory hallucinations. A trip can be good or bad – it may conjure a sense of relaxation and happiness or agitation and panic. Effects are felt within 20 minutes to two hours, and can last between six and 12 hours.

OVERDOSE

If someone is having a bad trip, take them to a quiet, comfortable area, stay with them, and reassure them. LSD is also known to exacerbate mental health conditions.

COMMON MIXERS

Not commonly mixed, but combining drugs will likely increase effects.

Didn’t find what you’re looking for? Try the YouthAOD toolbox for further in-depth information or ask YoDAA

SOME COMMON HARM REDUCTION STRATEGIES

Encourage a young person to:

  • Use in a safe and comfortable place with someone sober
  • Take half-dose first to see what the effects are like
  • Plan a day or two to comedown
  • Avoid driving or operating machinery
  • Call an ambulance if unable to calm someone on a bad trip

Didn’t find what you’re looking for? Try the YouthAOD toolbox for further in-depth information or ask YoDAA