DREXEL PSY 310 - Hallucinogens (3 pages)

Previewing page 1 of 3 page document View the full content.
View Full Document

Hallucinogens



Previewing page 1 of actual document.

View the full content.
View Full Document
View Full Document

Hallucinogens

63 views


Pages:
3
School:
Drexel University
Course:
Psy 310 - Drugs & Human Behavior
Unformatted text preview:

Hallucinogens Hallucinogens natural and synthetic synthesized substances that significantly alter one s state of consciousness May cause people to see or think they see random colors patterns events and objects that do not exist May cause people to have a different perception of time and space hold imaginary conversations believe they hear music and experience smells tastes and other sensations that are not real May have profound emotional effects the user may feel in touch with others around them or with their inner self feel closer to God or the universe or just feel ecstatic enhancing enjoyment of music and dancing and being with other people Hallucinogen Classification Most often classified as hallucinogens solely because of their capacity to produce hallucinations Because of their varied effects have also been classified as psychedelic mind expanding drugs and psychotomimetic mimicking psychosis Four major classes Cross tolerance w in each class confirms this grouping and common biological sites of action w in each class Monoamine LSD structurally related to monoamine neurotransmitters related mescaline Substances MDMA ecstasy Cannabinoids Marijuana THC chemical derivatives of plant cannabis sativa Anticholinergics Scopoloamine antagonists of Acetylcholine ACH receptors hallucinatory experiences at high doses atropine Dissociative Phencyclidine profound anesthesia awake but appear disconnected Anesthetics from environment distortions of body image feelings PCP of depersonalization sense of timelessness and being ketamine in outer space Key Points About Hallucinogens 1 Differ from other abused drugs like opiates and amphetamines in important ways Hallucinogens are not physically addictive habit forming however people can become psychologically dependent upon them Hallucinogens are not self administered their effects are not mediated by the reward pleasure centers of the brain but rather their reinforcing value is derived from its ability to alter perception and consciousness The real danger of hallucinogens is not their toxicity poison level but their unpredictability People have had such varied reactions to these substances especially to LSD so that it is virtually impossible to predict the effect a hallucinogen will have on any given individual Their contextdependent effects are influenced by the person s mood surroundings personality and expectations when taking the drug Have been revered in many societies for their use in religious rites or as medicinal agents Their use in modern Western societies has been much more controversial On the one hand they are considered to be dangerous drugs the Federal Bureau of Narcotics and Dangerous Drugs has placed them in Schedule I the most restrictive class The general public has had a positive yet controversial attitude towards them in part because of their association with the antiwar and countercultural movement of the 1960s They were used by relatively few people in the United States until the social upheaval of the 1960s By the mid sixties seemingly overnight LSD and marijuana use was common across the country especially among the young Many books were written to explain or vilify this phenomenon many others to justify the use of these drugs e g Aldous Huxley s The Doors of Perception where Huxley writes of his experimentation with mescaline in Mexico LSD which was virtually unknown to American society in the early sixties and still legal until 1966 gained widespread recognition as a result of the very public exploits of so called acid gurus Timothy Leary and Ken Kesey Why Research Hallucinogens Because they produce profound changes in perception and affect hallucinogenic drugs might provide some insight into these basic psychological processes and may be a special window to the mind body problem Some consider them to be of particular interest from a mental health perspective since they are psychotomimetic that is their effects mimic certain aspects of the major psychoses and they may be a research model of naturally occurring psychoses Because their impressive effects are often produced by minute quantities microgram amounts in the case of LSD hallucinogenic drugs are of particular interest to those who study the brain their potency implies that the drugs act with specificity at particular sites within the brain How Research Hallucinogens Neurobiological Methods e g electrophysiology biochemistry Behavioral Methods e g conditioning paradigms Two way Active Avoidance Shuttlebox Experimental Paradigm Light CS top right circle Light shock Shuttling stops shock escape response or prevents shock avoidance response Hallucinogen Effects on Shuttlebox Avoidance LSD and mescaline facilitate acquisition of shuttlebox avoidance excitatory effect LSD and mescaline disrupt performance of shuttlebox avoidance inhibitory effect There is no tolerance to the excitatory effect stress related bad trips There is rapid tolerance to the inhibitory effect non stress related good trips Bridger et al 1973 Stoff et al 1974 Important Unanswered Questions Re Hallucinogenic Drug Research Research is limited by the ability to get good animal models in view of the unique subjective effects of hallucinogens in humans Why are hallucinogenic drug experiences so variable and unpredictable What is the precise mechanism of action of hallucinogens and the anatomical substrate What underlies the mental experiences of hallucinogens


View Full Document

Access the best Study Guides, Lecture Notes and Practice Exams

Loading Unlocking...
Login

Join to view Hallucinogens and access 3M+ class-specific study document.

or
We will never post anything without your permission.
Don't have an account?
Sign Up

Join to view Hallucinogens and access 3M+ class-specific study document.

or

By creating an account you agree to our Privacy Policy and Terms Of Use

Already a member?