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Hallucinogens or psychedelics are mind-altering drugs, which affect the mind's perceptions, causing bizarre, unpredictable behavior, and severe, sensory disturbances that may place users at risk of serious injuries or death. Hallucinogens powerfully affect the brain, distorting the way our five senses work and changes our impressions of time and space. People who use these drugs a lot may have a hard time concentrating, communicating, or telling the difference between reality and illusion. Hallucinogens cause people to experience - you guessed it - hallucinations, imagined experiences that seem real. The word "hallucinate" comes from Latin words meaning, "to wander in the mind."

Your brain controls all of your perceptions; the way you see, hear, smell, taste, and feel. Chemical messengers transmit information from nerve cell to nerve cell in the body and the brain. Your nerve cells are called neurons, and their chemical messengers are called neurotransmitters. Chemicals like hallucinogens can disrupt this communication system, and the results are changes in the way you sense the world around you. There's still a lot that scientists don't know about the effects of Hallucinogens on the brain though.

Some hallucinogens occur naturally in trees, vines, seeds, fungi and leaves. Others are made in laboratories by mixing different chemical substances. LSD or acid is one of the most common, well-known hallucinogens. Psilocin or Psilocybin mushrooms, Mescaline or Peyote, MDMA, Bufotenine, Morning Glory seeds, Jimson weed, PCP and DMT are less common psychedelics with effects similar to LSD. PCP and Ketamine are drugs with hallucinogenic properties. Some drugs, such as cannabis, can cause hallucinogen-like effects when used in high doses or in certain ways. Using hallucinogens is often called tripping. In its pure form LSD is a white, odorless powder. This pure form is very strong, so LSD is usually mixed with other things to make the dose large enough to take. LSD comes in the form as liquids, tablets, capsules or squares of gelatin or blotting paper. LSD use can have many effects. These may include sleeplessness, trembling, and raised heart rate, and blood pressure. LSD users may feel several emotions at once (including extreme terror), and their senses may seem to get crossed, giving the feeling of hearing colors and seeing sounds. Even a tiny speck of LSD can trigger these effects. Many LSD users have flashbacks; sudden repetitions of their LSD experiences, days or months after they stop using the drug. LSD has a slight bitter taste. "Blotter acid," which is absorbent paper soaked in LSD and sold as squares, can be bought for $4 to $5 for a trip that lasts three to 12 hours. Other slang terms for LSD include Microdot, White Lightning, Blue Heaven, Windowpane, and Sugar Cubes. LSD is a Schedule 1 Controlled Substance with severe penalties for possession and use. Mescaline is a hallucinogen that comes from the Peyote cactus. Mescaline is ingested. Morning Glory seeds are occasionally brewed into a tea or eaten for the hallucinogenic effects. There have been some reports of teens drinking "gordo juice," a combination of Morning Glory seeds and fruit juice to counteract the bitter taste of the seeds. The seeds can cause convulsions, gangrene, and adverse psychological effects. Jimson weed (Angel's Trumpet) is a wild, poisonous weed that produces hallucinations and has caused deaths among users. DMT is another psychedelic drug that acts like LSD. PCP can be found as a pure white, crystal-like powder, tablet, capsule, or bitter tasting, clear liquid that is consumed orally, injected, sniffed, or smoked. PCP is often combined with marijuana and tobacco products. PCP effects are very unpredictable. For example, it may make some people hallucinate and become aggressive, while others may become drowsy and passive. PCP is often mixed with marijuana and tobacco products by dipping it in PCP-laced embalming fluid and then smoked. Some slang terms for PCP include Angel Dust, Crystal, Jet Fuel, and Cyclone. Ketamine is closely related to PCP and was also used in the past as a surgical anesthetic. Currently, Ketamine is used in veterinary medicine. On the club scene, Ketamine can be found in liquid form or as a white powder that is snorted or smoked with marijuana or tobacco products. MDMA or ecstasy and MDA cause many things by allterting the role in so many things, such as mood, sleep, and control of heart rate. Psilocybin or magic mushrooms is the hallucinogenic chemical that occurs in some mushrooms. In its pure form, Psilocybin is also a white powder, but it is usually sold as dried mushrooms or in substances made from mushrooms. Psilocybin is from the same chemical family as LSD so their effects are similar. Some people eat poisonous mushrooms thinking that they are the mushrooms that contain Psilocybin. This can be very dangerous as some poisonous

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