Bad Trip
2 min

What Is A Bad Trip?

2 min
News Research

Be prepared for the trip before going on it. Simply by taking a few precautions, you can increase the chances of having a great trip. But what is a bad trip?

When taking hallucinogens, no one wants to have a bad time. Taking a trip should be an adventure, a place of self-discovery. But unfortunately, that is not always the case. Things can sometimes take a turn for the worse and there is nothing like a bad trip to dampen a potentially fantastic undertaking.

But, What Is A Bad Trip?

Psychedelics trip

Psychedelics like acid, mushrooms and even marijuana and cocaine have the ability to change a user’s perception of their environment while under the influence. This change in focus is often called a “trip.” Hallucinogens not only alter what an individual physically sees, it can also change one’s mental, emotional and auditory state as well.

Bad trips exist on a spectrum. Sometimes it manifests in a mild discomfort that can be easily alleviated, while others it can be overwhelming and downright frightening. During these times, it may take more effort to come back to a steady, calm place.

What Can Cause A Bad Trip?

What can cause a bad trip?

Since hallucinogens incite a warped sense of reality, discomforting feelings experienced in this altered state may culminate in a bad trip.

• Time: The feeling of time can undulate from moving swiftly to standing still. This can bring immense discomfort to users who feel like the experience is never ending. If someone has a bad trip, it is helpful to remind them that he or she took a hallucinogenic drug and the effects will not last forever.

• Paranoia: Feelings can change rapidly when on hallucinogens. Emotions may quickly turn from positive to negative to positive again. If a person on a bad trip cannot be consoled due to their paranoia towards another, it may be beneficial to offer them a calm, quiet space to collect. Be sure to check back in with them from time to time, making sure they are as comfortable as possible.

• Hallucinations: When tripping, it is common to have visual and auditory hallucinations. Usually, users are aware of this before taking any drug. But during an uncomfortable trip, it may help to assure them that what is happening is normal and just another part of the experience.

How To Avoid A Bad Trip?

Once a person has taken a hallucinogen, they are basically locked-in for whatever experience comes their way. At least until the effects wear off. If a bad trip occurs, there are ways to turn the experience around. Usually, the most intense moment of an LSD trip occurs one to three hours after consumption. The whole experience can last anywhere from six to ten hours. The individual will most likely have a difficult time sleeping, so the best thing to do is to set up for a pleasant journey from the beginning. Take the time to create a space where the mind can wander in a positive environment.

Six to ten hours trip

• Don’t drink alcohol: Alcohol has been known to decrease the hallucinogenic effects of LSD, but it can increase panic, anxiety and hostility. Avoid situations where these emotions can take place. If someone is on the verge of hurting themselves or others, call for help.

• Past trauma: Hallucinogens have been used for therapeutic purposes, so it is not surprising that these drugs can bring up past memories and traumas. This can quickly lead to a bad trip. Being aware that this may occur is a helpful reminder to establish before every adventure. If it does happen, it might be beneficial to seek mental counseling after the experience.

• Get a sitter: Have someone who is compassionate and understanding observe your trip. This person is usually sober and can be a helpful guide for anyone having a difficult time. A sitter is also a great way to keep the trip safe overall.

• Meet needs: Be prepared to stay well hydrated and keep easy-to-prepare foods on standby. During a trip, it may not occur to you to eat and drink, but that doesn’t mean your body doesn’t need to. Hungry bellies and dry mouths can cause irritation and grump up the mood.

Anyone, from a novice to an experienced user, can have a bad trip. This doesn’t mean that most trips end up this way or that the user did anything incorrectly. Just by taking a few precautions, staying well hydrated and self-aware, trips can be beneficial, regardless of the outcome.


  Guest Writer  

Written by: Guest Writer
Occasionally we have guest writers contribute to our blog here at Zamnesia. They come from a wide range of backgrounds and experiences, making their knowledge invaluable.

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