Several studies conducted in the 1960s showed improvement in alcoholics who were given the hallucinogen, LSD, as a type of therapy. Although the research was abandoned when the drug was made illegal, as U.S.News & World Report Healthday reports, there has been recent interest in the therapeutic potential of hallucinogenic drugs.
Why would a potentially dangerous drug, such as LSD, help alcoholics? The answer to this question is not answered by the research, but one of the effects of LSD is to cause the user to see themself, and the world around them, from a different perspective. Previously harmless things can seem scary, obviously dangerous situations, such as heights, can seem harmless, and social conventions, including things we take for granted, such as wearing clothing, can seem ridiculous and constraining. So it doesn't take too much of a stretch of the imagination to see that an alcoholic, previously clinging to their addiction as an unmovable force, could suddenly see drinking as a way of coping as pointless and ridiculous.
But LSD is not a drug to be taken lightly, despite the myths about acid still circulating. Every year, accidents and misadventures occur as a result of people doing irrational things, having bad trips, and hurting themselves while they are high on acid. If you need further evidence, here are five true stories of bad trips.
And while the recent review of LSD research with alcoholics potentially provides some hope for the hard-to-treat, I would strongly caution anyone against self-medicating with LSD. Illegal acid is impossible to accurately dose, may contain other drugs such as PCP, and can cause extremely negative reactions at the time, as well as flashbacks, sometimes for months or even years afterwards.