DREXEL PSY 310 - Hallucinogens (3 pages)

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Hallucinogens



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Hallucinogens

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

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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



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