Last Updated on July 16, 2021
When you think of LSD (otherwise known as acid), you might imagine hippies, festivals, and the 1960s. But the truth is that people take LSD in many contexts, including parties and clubs—two places where alcohol is frequently found. Considering this, it’s not uncommon for people to combine these two substances.
But can you drink while on acid? What are the side effects? And more importantly, is this combination safe?
Below, learn about what happens when you mix LSD and alcohol, side effects to be aware of, and how to take care of yourself and others in this situation.
What Are the Effects of LSD and Alcohol?
LSD is an illegal hallucinogen with numerous effects—including visual hallucinations, audiovisual synesthesia, altered emotional state, and depersonalization. If you take a standard dose of LSD, you could feel these effects for up to 12 hours1.
Alcohol is much more common, with well-known side effects such as impaired judgment, lowered inhibitions, and loss of motor skills and coordination.
When you have lowered inhibitions or higher impulsivity—from either LSD or alcohol—you could be at greater risk for mixing or taking larger amounts of these substances.
Is It Safe To Drink on Acid?
So, can you drink on acid?
While you technically can, it isn’t safe to do so. There hasn’t been much research on the direct interactions of acid and alcohol, but the combined side effects of these drugs can lead to harmful outcomes.
In many cases, people will drink alcohol to try to tone down the intensity of LSD or extend its effects. But while alcohol can seem like it “balances” out LSD (or vice-versa), the truth is that you will only become more impaired by increasing your consumption of either drug.
Side Effects and Risks of Mixing Alcohol and LSD
Mixing acid and alcohol may lead to harmful side effects such as:
- Vomiting or nausea
- Psychological distress (or a “bad trip”)3
- Depersonalization or derealization4
- Heightened risk of overdose
- Impaired coordination and cognitive function
- Blacking out or loss of consciousness
It’s important to note that these are not the only side effects that you may experience from mixing these drugs. In truth, your experience will be hard to predict due to the way LSD affects the body and brain.
The effects of LSD vary from person to person and are also influenced by dose, body size, whether or not you’ve eaten, and your state of mind before and during use. This unpredictability is what makes combining alcohol and acid especially dangerous.
Additionally, both alcohol and LSD can have a “come-down.” So, taking them together can lead to a worsened experience when they eventually wear off.
Is the Combination of Acid and Alcohol Addictive?
If you find yourself taking acid mixed with alcohol regularly, it may be time to consider getting help. Although it may feel okay in the short term, frequent use of mind-altering substances often leads to dependence and damage in other areas of your life as time goes on.
Therefore, try to stay mindful of your alcohol and substance use habits—and don’t be afraid to reach out for support if you find yourself struggling.
Taking Care of Yourself and Others
So, what do you do if you or a friend is drinking alcohol on acid?
If you find yourself in this situation, here are some tips to keep in mind for staying safe and calm:
- Remember: the effects you’re feeling are because you’ve taken substances. If you feel anxious, remind yourself that the unpleasant effects will wear off as your body processes the LSD and alcohol.
- Eat and hydrate enough before and during drug or alcohol use.
- Stay in a safe, familiar place. Don’t go wandering off to unfamiliar or dangerous areas.
- Surround yourself with people you trust. Try to keep someone around who is not under the influence, and can help and comfort others through the experience when needed.
- Resist the urge to drink more alcohol or take more LSD. While you may believe that they balance or counteract each other, adding more substances into your body will make you feel worse in the end.
Finally, if you feel that you or a friend is showing symptoms of alcohol overdose or loss of control from LSD, do not hesitate to seek medical treatment.
Getting Help for Alcohol Use
If you struggle with alcohol use and can’t seem to cut back on your own, online treatment alternatives may be able to help.
Ria Health is one online option that gives you convenient support for problem drinking, without having to rearrange your life. You can connect with medical professionals, get prescriptions, and receive weekly coaching support towards your personal goals. Best of all, the whole thing can be done through the Ria Health smartphone app.