Does LSD Kill Brain Cells? Debunking This Common Myth

Does LSD Kill Brain Cells? Debunking This Common Myth

One of the biggest misconceptions about LSD (lysergic acid diethylamide), and psychedelics in general, is that they kill your brain cells or damage the brain. While there are certainly some psychedelics that have been shown to cause harm, most of the classical psychedelics have a surprisingly low potential for harm. LSD, in particular, has very a very low impact on the body (physical tissue) and a profound impact on the mind (thoughts and consciousness). It attaches itself to various receptors in the brain to activate or deactivate certain regions (temporarily) but lacks any overt levels of toxicity that could lead to brain damage.

LSD & The Brain: Summary

  • There is no evidence that LSD can kill brain cells.
  • LSD can have potential long-term side effects, like HPPD, but it’s exceedingly rare.
  • LSD is more likely to induce positive long-term changes, such as better neuron development and mental health.
  • The lethal dose of LSD is still unknown.

Does LSD Cause Brain Damage?

LSD is considered one of the original psychedelic drugs (alongside magic mushrooms and mescaline), and despite its age, it’s still one of the most well-loved psychedelics used today. However, despite its excellent reputation, a lot of people still fear LSD, thanks in part to the insanity of the anti-drug craze over the past 50 years. One of the biggest fears people have about LSD is that they’ll become “permafried” like Ozzy Osbourne. Despite what all of the misinformation might suggest, you’ll be pleased to know that LSD does not actually kill brain cells.

How LSD Might Actually Fix Parts Of The Brain

While LSD most certainly does affect your brain, none of the evidence available on LSD thus far suggests it causes any direct damage to the brain. Anecdotal reports of people using LSD regularly for decades still lack any convincing evidence that LSD causes any damage to the brain (or elsewhere in the body). In fact, according to a growing number of studies, LSD can actually offer significant long-term benefits to the brain, especially in regards to mental health. A recent study found that psychedelics can actually increase neuritogenesis, meaning that they can help to encourage neuron development in the brain. Through stimulation of the 5-HT2A and TrkB signaling pathways, psychedelics like LSD were shown to have the potential to not only help promote strong neuron development but also potentially act as fast treatments for depression and similar disorders.

Back to blog

Leave a comment