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Hallucinogens Addiction Treatment Center Orange County California

What are Hallucinogens?

Hallucinogens, also known as psychedelics, are a category of drugs that can alter an individual’s perception of reality that may include hallucinations, heightened sensory experiences, and distorted thinking. Some hallucinogens may also cause individuals to experience dissociative feelings, a detachment from their bodies and minds.

Hallucinogens can be present in naturally occurring substances in some plants and mushrooms, and have been used for thousands of years in many different cultures to produce mystical visions and enlightening experiences. Synthesized hallucinogens were manufactured and used for the purposes of recreation, education, and enlightenment.

Although hallucinogens are not considered addictive, using them often can create tolerance in an individual’s body. 

Hallucinogen addiction, also known as hallucinogen use disorder, is a term used to describe the problematic and compulsive use of hallucinogenic substances, leading to negative consequences on an individual’s health, well-being, and daily functioning. Hallucinogens are a class of psychoactive substances that alter perception, mood, and cognitive processes, often leading to hallucinations or alterations in sensory experiences.

Common hallucinogens include lysergic acid diethylamide (LSD), psilocybin (found in certain mushrooms), phencyclidine (PCP), and 3,4-methylenedioxymethamphetamine (MDMA or “ecstasy”). While hallucinogens are generally considered to have a lower potential for addiction compared to some other substances, individuals can develop patterns of problematic use that impact their lives.

Street Names

Here are some street names associated with popular hallucinogens:

  1. LSD (Lysergic Acid Diethylamide):

    • Acid
    • Lucy
    • Tabs
    • Blotter
    • Doses
  2. Psilocybin Mushrooms:

    • Magic mushrooms
    • Shrooms
    • Caps
    • Boomers
    • Psychedelic mushrooms
  3. Mescaline (Peyote Cactus):

    • Peyote
    • Buttons
    • Cactus
  4. DMT (Dimethyltryptamine):

    • DMT
    • Dimitri
    • Businessman’s trip
    • Fantasia
  5. Ketamine:

    • K
    • Special K
    • Vitamin K
    • Cat Valium
  6. PCP (Phencyclidine):

    • PCP
    • Angel dust
    • Hog
    • Love boat
  7. MDMA (Ecstasy):

    • Ecstasy
    • Molly
    • E
    • X
    • Adam
  8. Salvia divinorum:

    • Salvia
    • Sally D
    • Magic mint
  9. Synthetic Cannabinoids:

    • Spice
    • K2
    • Scooby Snax
    • Synthetic marijuana


  1. Classic Hallucinogens:

    • Classic hallucinogens include substances like LSD (lysergic acid diethylamide), psilocybin (found in certain mushrooms), and mescaline (found in peyote cactus).
    • The use of classic hallucinogens is generally lower compared to other substances, and their patterns of use may vary.
  2. Hallucinogenic Mushrooms:

    • Psilocybin-containing mushrooms have been used recreationally and for spiritual purposes.
    • The National Survey on Drug Use and Health (NSDUH) reported that, in 2019, around 1.5 million individuals aged 12 or older reported past-year use of hallucinogenic mushrooms.
  3. DMT (Dimethyltryptamine):

    • DMT is a potent hallucinogenic substance found in certain plants and used in some traditional ceremonies.
    • Data on DMT use is limited, but there has been interest in its recreational use, often in the form of a substance known as “ayahuasca.”
  4. Ketamine:

    • Ketamine is a dissociative anesthetic that, at higher doses, can induce hallucinations.
    • Ketamine has both medical and recreational uses. The NSDUH reported that around 1.1 million individuals aged 12 or older reported past-year use of ketamine in 2019.
  5. Synthetic Hallucinogens (NPS):

    • New psychoactive substances (NPS) or synthetic hallucinogens have emerged, and their use patterns can be challenging to track.
    • The use of substances like NBOMe compounds, synthetic cannabinoids, and other novel hallucinogens has been a concern.
  6. Treatment Admissions:

    • Hallucinogens are generally not considered substances with a high potential for addiction. However, individuals seeking treatment for substance use may report hallucinogen use alongside other substances.
  7. Research and Mental Health:

    • There has been a growing interest in the therapeutic potential of hallucinogens, with research exploring their use in mental health treatment, particularly in conditions like depression and post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD).

Clinically Reviewed by: Charee Marquez, LMFT

Types of Hallucinogens

Hallucinogens, fascinating substances that induce alterations in perception, can be categorized into two distinct subclasses, each with its unique effects:

1. Classic Hallucinogens:

Classic hallucinogens are chemicals renowned for distorting one’s perception of reality, often leading to an expanded consciousness and altered sense of time and space. Notable examples include:

  • LSD (Lysergic Acid Diethylamide):

    • Manufactured from a specific fungus, LSD induces powerful mood alterations and visual hallucinations. It can, however, lead to “bad trips” characterized by intense anxiety and depressive states.
  • DMT (Dimethyltryptamin):

    • Naturally occurring in plants and synthesized in labs, DMT causes intense intoxication with no reported long-term negative effects. Trace amounts of DMT are also present in the human brain.
  • Ayahuasca:

    • A tea brewed from plants containing DMT, Ayahuasca is known for its hallucinogenic properties.
  • Psilocybin:

    • Found in certain mushrooms, psilocybin, consumed in tea form, induces hallucinations and spiritual experiences. Side effects may include panic, paranoia, and nausea.

2. Dissociative Drugs:

This category alters sight and sound perception, leading to visual and auditory hallucinations. Dissociative hallucinogens can cause a sense of dissociation from oneself. Examples encompass:

  • Ketamine (Special K):

    • Initially used in anesthesia, Ketamine, when abused, produces dissociative experiences such as near-death and out-of-body experiences.
  • PCP (Phencyclidine):

    • Initially designed as an anesthetic, PCP triggers hallucinations, amnesia, paranoia, and distorted perception. Prolonged use may result in serious health risks.

How do Hallucinogens Work?

While not conclusively proven, it’s believed that classic hallucinogens disrupt neural circuits using serotonin as a neurotransmitter, affecting the brain’s prefrontal cortex regulating moods and stress responses. Dissociative drugs are thought to impact the brain’s glutamate system, influencing learning, memory, and emotions.

Short-Term Effects of Hallucinogens:

  • Distorted perception of reality
  • Feelings of euphoria and mania
  • Intense sensory experiences
  • Difficulty focusing
  • Paranoia and panic attacks
  • Insomnia
  • Anxiety and depression

Long-Term Effects of Hallucinogens:

  • Persistent psychosis: Inducing severe mood swings, disturbing hallucinations, and delusions that may last for years.
  • Hallucinogen Persisting Perception Disorder (HPPD): Known as flashbacks, it involves sensory distortions and visual disturbances lasting several years.

Treatment Options

1. Detoxification and Medical Supervision:

  • The initial step in treating hallucinogen addiction involves detoxification. Under medical supervision, individuals undergo detox to safely eliminate the substance from their system.
  • Medical assistance may be necessary to manage withdrawal symptoms effectively.

2. Residential Rehabilitation Programs:

  • Following detox, residential rehabilitation programs provide a structured environment for comprehensive treatment.
  • In-house therapies, counseling, and group sessions aim to address the psychological aspects of hallucinogen addiction.

3. Outpatient Treatment:

  • Outpatient programs offer flexibility for individuals with less severe addiction issues.
  • Regular counseling and therapy sessions provide ongoing support while allowing individuals to continue with their daily lives.

4. Counseling and Therapy:

  • Cognitive-Behavioral Therapy (CBT) and other evidence-based therapies help individuals recognize and change harmful thought patterns and behaviors.
  • Group therapy fosters a supportive community, allowing individuals to share experiences and coping strategies.

5. Family Therapy:

  • Involving family members in the treatment process helps address interpersonal dynamics and provides a supportive foundation for recovery.

6. Dual Diagnosis Treatment:

  • For individuals with co-occurring mental health issues, dual diagnosis treatment integrates mental health care into the addiction treatment plan.

7. Support Groups:

  • Engaging in support groups, such as 12-step programs or non-12-step alternatives, offers long-term support and encouragement post-rehabilitation.

8. Holistic Approaches:

  • Holistic therapies, including mindfulness-based practices, yoga, and meditation, contribute to overall well-being and stress reduction.

9. Aftercare Planning:

  • Developing a personalized aftercare plan is crucial for sustained recovery. This may include ongoing therapy, support group participation, and relapse prevention strategies.

10. Education and Relapse Prevention:

  • Equipping individuals with knowledge about hallucinogens and their effects helps in preventing relapse. Education on coping mechanisms and stress management is integral.

11. Medical Monitoring:

  • Continuous medical monitoring ensures that any physical or mental health issues arising during recovery are promptly addressed.

12. Nutritional Counseling:

  • A focus on nutrition helps individuals rebuild physical health, contributing to overall recovery.

13. Reintegration into Society:

  • Sober living facilities and reintegration programs assist individuals in transitioning back into their communities while maintaining a substance-free lifestyle.

Does Insurance Cover Hallucinogen Addiction Treatment?

Typically, yes. However, insurance coverage for hallucinogens addiction treatment can vary based on the specific insurance plan and its policies. Insurance plans generally provide coverage for substance use disorder treatment, including addiction to hallucinogens, but the extent of coverage may differ.

Here are some key points to consider:

  1. Type of Insurance Plan:

    • Different types of insurance plans, such as private insurance, Medicaid, or Medicare, may have varying levels of coverage for hallucinogens addiction treatment.
  2. In-Network vs. Out-of-Network Providers:

    • Insurance plans often have a network of preferred providers. In-network hallucinogens addiction treatment facilities or providers are generally covered at a higher rate than out-of-network providers.
  3. Verification of Benefits:

    • It is crucial to contact the insurance provider and verify the specific terms of coverage for hallucinogens addiction treatment. This includes checking details such as copayments, deductibles, and any out-of-pocket expenses.
  4. Medical Necessity and Preauthorization:

    • Insurance coverage for hallucinogens addiction treatment may be contingent on a determination of medical necessity. Preauthorization or approval from the insurance company may be required before entering a treatment program.
  5. Level of Care:

    • Different levels of addiction treatment, such as inpatient, outpatient, or detoxification services, may have different coverage considerations. Some insurance plans may cover certain levels of care more comprehensively.
  6. Length of Treatment:

    • Insurance coverage may be influenced by the length of the hallucinogens addiction treatment program. Some plans may have limitations on the number of days covered, while others may provide more extensive coverage for longer durations.
  7. Parity Laws:

    • Mental Health Parity and Addiction Equity Act (MHPAEA) in the United States requires insurance plans to offer coverage for substance use disorder services, including hallucinogens addiction treatment, at levels comparable to medical and surgical coverage.
  8. Crisis or Emergency Situations:

    • In cases of immediate need or crisis, insurance plans may cover hallucinogens addiction treatment as part of emergency services. However, it is essential to follow up with the insurance provider for ongoing coverage considerations.
  9. Appeals Process:

    • If an insurance claim for hallucinogens addiction treatment is denied, individuals have the right to appeal the decision. The appeals process allows for a review of the denial, and successful appeals can result in coverage being granted.
  10. Out-of-Pocket Expenses:

    • Even with insurance coverage, individuals may still have out-of-pocket expenses, such as copayments or coinsurance. Understanding these costs is essential for financial planning.

It’s advisable for individuals seeking hallucinogens addiction treatment to work closely with their insurance provider and the treatment facility’s admissions team to understand the specific terms of coverage. Additionally, seeking assistance from the treatment facility’s insurance coordinator can provide valuable support in verifying benefits and understanding the insurance process.

Seeking Treatment? We Can Help!

At California Prime Recovery, as an in-network provider we work with most insurance plans, such as:

If you or a loved one are struggling with mental health challenges or substance abuse, reach out to California Prime Recovery today. Our team of compassionate professionals is here to support your journey towards lasting well-being. Give us a call at 866-208-2390

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