LSD Effects For The Brain
Ask drug users what is going on in heir’s heads on a trip, and you will get some interesting answers. Some will take about the feelings of euphoria, calm or disassociation with the world. Others will talk about the hallucinations and images seen. Others just won’t have a good answer, they just like the feeling. All these answers are personal and subjective. The question for scientists is simple. What is going on inside their brains on a neurological level?
Studies In The Brain Activity Of LSD Users Have Come Up With Some Fascinating Scientific Images
In an Imperial College London study, volunteers took a dose of LSD via injection and underwent scans. There were 20 participants, all of whom deemed to be of good mental and physical health. On the first day, they received an injection of 75mcg of LSD and underwent imaging processes.
This meant arterial spin labeling, resting state MRI and magnetoencephalography. This allowed scientists to look at brain activity as it was occurring and see which parts become active. This meant looking at brain activity but also at the connections at work and blood flow.
The images showed an extensive impact on brain use, with bright colors of activity stretching across the organ. Users may joke that LSD opens up the mind, unlocking parts of their brains that were once inaccessible.
However, these images suggest that this is true. It was as if the brains were seeing images and responding to them while the participant’s eyes were not longer open. Essentially, it was physical proof of a hallucination or over-active imagination. The drug was triggering this part of the brain and causing the images that we associate with trips.
The Next Part Of The Study Began With The Purpose Of Validating The Effect Of The Club Drug
Each volunteer then went through the same process with a placebo. This helped to prove that the participants were not creating these hallucinations through cognitive thought and expectation. With the placebo, the impact on brain activity was significantly different.
The creative, wider areas of the brain were not triggered, and the connections between the networks were not made. The images were the result of the drug. Interviews with volunteers showed that those with the most intense activity levels were the ones with the most vivid vision.
Scientists now hope to use this data to learn more about the effect of hallucinogenic club drugs. They can provide clear links between the effect and certain parts of the brains. The theory is that the drug somehow breaks down barriers to areas that we have trained ourselves to block out. We restrict brain activity and thinking to the necessary areas of the brain during rational, conscious thought. LSD seems to change that and let users access more of their brains.
Why Did It Take So Long To Carry Out This Study And Learn This?
We have known about the psychological properties of LSD for decades. A ban came into force in the 1960s, after its use became a popular by-product of the counter-culture movement. However, it has been around since 1938. This wasn’t an easy study to get off the ground because of the ethical implication of giving this illegal drug to participants. The results have shown that the paperwork and hard work were worthwhile.
Where Do We Go From Here? Could This Data Be Of Any Medical Use?
The results of the study are interesting because they showcase hallucinations and drug trips on a scientific, objective level. These trips are real, and there are real cognitive effects. The question now is how can this data help us. What good will come from this study other than providing greater insight into the inner workings of drug use? There is hope that this sense of validation for LSD could see it used in a medical capacity. It is clear that LSD has a positive effect on the brain.
When used in a safe, regulated manner there is the potential for aiding psychiatric disorders. Further study could prove that doses of LSD could change the thought patterns of addicts or those with severe depression. What could LSD do to those minds? With further testing, we could view LSD in an entirely new light. It could go from dangerous club drug to enlightening psychiatric aid.