Phencyclidine, more commonly known as PCP or “angel dust,” is a mind-altering, illicit drug. PCP is known as a hallucinogenic drug, seeing as it causes changes in perception and auditory and visual hallucinations. When used recreationally, PCP is generally smoked, though it can be ingested in numerous ways – it can also be taken orally, nasally, or injected intravenously.
Because this drug is known to cause feelings of detachment and dissociation, it can be hazardous for users and those around them. Feelings of invincibility and extreme aggression often cause those on PCP to exhibit violent behaviors. Many PCP users have severely injured themselves and others while high on the drug.
The drug was initially developed in the late 1950s, and it was initially used for medicinal purposes. Medical professionals utilized PCP as an anesthetic; however, doctors ceased using the drug once its severe side effects became evident.
Side effects included:
- irrational behaviors and thinking
PCP is now a Schedule II drug, meaning that it is considered very dangerous and highly habit-forming. If someone has developed a dependency on the drug, hospitalization will be necessary. So, why do people take this drug at all, considering all of its adverse effects?
What Does Being on PCP Feel Like?
Those who take PCP initially experience the intense high that it provides. However, a PCP high is very dissimilar to the high associated with many other types of illicit substances. When an individual uses PCP, neurotransmitters within the brain are affected, and the reuptake of “feel good” chemicals like dopamine, serotonin, and norepinephrine are interrupted.
This disconnection prevents the brain from processing things as it usually would. The effects of the drug take over the brain and the body quickly, typically within 30 minutes of ingestion (and more rapidly if the drug is smoked or injected). The effects of PCP can last for up to one full day, depending on the amount taken. But what does a PCP high feel like?
In so many words, a PCP high feels like a complete lack of control over your mind and body, which can be terrifying for some users – especially those who ingest the drug accidentally, which might occur if another drug (like ecstasy or marijuana) is laced with PCP. Some individuals who have used the drug reported that it feels like primary urges and emotions are compelling the mind and uncontrollable and reactionary behaviors are almost inevitable.
A lot of the time, these behaviors are violent. There have been numerous crimes – including murders – carried about by people who were on the drug. Those on PCP cannot rationalize with themselves. They can’t think, “This is a bad idea; I probably shouldn’t do this.” They act on drug-fueled impulses and often wind up behind bars because of it.
PCP Abuse and Addiction
PCP abuse and addiction are severe, and when abused for an extended length of time, the drug can cause lasting physical, mental and emotional issues. Those struggling with a PCP addiction must seek medical help immediately – attempting to detox alone can be dangerous. Because psychological cravings are so intense, PCP abusers will generally go back to using before the withdrawal process is complete.
At Garden State Treatment Center, we specialize in treating men and women struggling with PCP abuse and addiction. We understand the psychological implications of the drug, and we have on-site psychiatrists in addition to physicians and licensed therapists on staff. If you have been struggling with an addiction to PCP or any other psychoactive drug, give us a call today. We’re here to help.
What does a PCP high feel like?
Phencyclidine (PCP), also known as angel dust, is a dissociative hallucinogenic drug that can produce a range of effects. It’s important to note that PCP is an illegal and highly dangerous substance, and its use is associated with significant health risks. I strongly advise against using PCP or any illicit substances. However, I can provide some general information about the reported effects of PCP:
- Disconnection from Reality: PCP is known for inducing dissociative effects, leading to a sense of detachment from one’s surroundings and a distorted perception of reality. Users may feel disconnected from their own body or experience a sense of “out-of-body” or “dreamlike” states.
- Hallucinations: PCP can cause both visual and auditory hallucinations. These hallucinations can vary in intensity and may involve vivid, colorful, and sometimes disturbing experiences that are not based on actual sensory stimuli.
- Euphoria and Grandiosity: Some users may experience feelings of euphoria, a sense of invincibility, or a distorted sense of self-importance. These effects can contribute to risky behaviors and impaired judgment.
- Agitation and Confusion: PCP can also lead to agitation, restlessness, and confusion. Users may exhibit unpredictable and aggressive behavior, posing a risk to themselves and others.
- Physical Effects: PCP can cause various physical effects, including increased heart rate, elevated blood pressure, muscle rigidity, uncoordinated movements, and impaired motor skills. Some users may also experience numbness or lack of pain perception.
- Negative Side Effects: PCP use can be associated with negative side effects and adverse reactions, such as anxiety, paranoia, panic attacks, disorientation, seizures, and even life-threatening situations.
It is important to understand that the effects of PCP can vary greatly between individuals, and there is no way to predict how a particular person will react to the drug. PCP is an illicit substance with significant risks to physical and mental health, and its use can lead to addiction, psychological disturbances, and other severe consequences. If you or someone you know is struggling with substance abuse, it is essential to seek help from healthcare professionals or addiction specialists.
Why do people abuse Phencyclidine (PCP)? What drives people to start using PCPs?
People abuse phencyclidine (PCP) for various reasons, although it’s important to note that PCP use has significantly declined over the years. However, understanding the motivations and factors that contribute to PCP abuse can provide some insights. Here are a few reasons why some individuals may abuse PCP:
- Desired Effects: PCP can induce a range of psychoactive effects, including dissociation, hallucinations, euphoria, and altered perceptions. Some individuals may be attracted to these mind-altering experiences and seek them out as a form of escape or recreation.
- Peer Influence: Peer influence and social dynamics can play a role in PCP abuse. Some individuals may be introduced to PCP through friends or acquaintances who use the drug, and the desire to fit in or be accepted within a specific social group can influence their decision to try it.
- Risk-Taking and Sensation-Seeking: Some individuals with a propensity for risk-taking or sensation-seeking behaviors may be drawn to the intense and unpredictable effects of PCP. The drug’s reputation for producing extreme alterations in consciousness may appeal to those who actively seek intense and novel experiences.
- Self-Medication and Coping: Individuals struggling with underlying mental health issues, such as depression, anxiety, or trauma, may turn to PCP as a means of self-medication or coping with emotional pain or distress. However, it’s important to note that PCP use can exacerbate mental health symptoms and lead to further complications.
- Availability and Exposure: PCP may be accessible in certain communities or social circles where drug availability is relatively high. Exposure to PCP through friends, family, or the local drug market can increase the likelihood of initiation and continued use.
It’s crucial to recognize that PCP is a powerful and potentially dangerous drug that can have severe physical, psychological, and social consequences. PCP abuse is associated with a range of adverse effects, including aggression, violence, psychosis, and long-lasting cognitive impairment. Seeking professional help and support is important for individuals struggling with PCP abuse, as comprehensive treatment and intervention can help address underlying issues, provide guidance, and promote recovery.