What is PCP Addiction?
Technically known as phencyclidine, PCP has been making waves on the rave and club scenes for decades. The addictive substance is marked by its ability to induce auditory and visual hallucinations, and is responsible for inducing its users into psychosis which may persists upwards of several hours. PCP develops tolerance within the body, making those experimenting with it forced to consume higher dosages of the substance to achieve the same effect. when purchased illicitly, PCP is available in two main forms, which include colorful (or not) tablets and powders. Users of PCP can either inject, snort, or ingest the substance. A common practice for consuming the substance is mixing liquid PCP with pungent herbs like basil and cilantro.
PCP manipulates delicate chemicals in the brain which are responsible for regulating healthy moods, appetite, and memory. The substance interrupts glutamate, which helps the body recognize physical pain, register memory, and manage emotions. Those who choose not to seek help for their PCP addiction may eventually develop schizophrenia like disorders, and be unable to function normally.
Affecting dopamine output, one of PCP’s driving addictive factors is the euphoria users are initially bathed in. However, these effects are short lived and come coupled with acute anxiety, disassociation, confusion, and eventually full blown psychosis. The adverse effects of PCP often make users hostile, aggressive, and potentially causes suicidal thoughts and depression. Many users report feeling terrible dread and unimaginable fear, stemming from bizarre worries occurring randomly.
Signs of PCP Use
Although many abuse PCP in rave and club environments, PCP dens are fairly common. Since the drug is typically used in group settings, many users experiencing a “bad trip” put themselves and others in danger. During a “bad trip” the adverse effects of PCP are in full swing, forcing users into panicked states of anxious frenzies and confusion. The following are signs exhibited by users taking PCP:
- Auditory and Visual Hallucinations
- Disassociation with Reality
- Difficulty in Concentration and Cognition
- Acute Paranoia
- Chronic Anxiety
- Depression, Suicidal Thoughts
- Panic and Insatiable Fear
Symptoms of PCP Addiction
The physical signs of PCP use are hard to miss. Those under the influence completely lose their sense of equilibrium, experience dizziness, are unable to speak coherently or clearly, blankly stare without responding to inquires, and resemble catatonic patients.
Severe marks of PCP addiction manifest themselves after continued use of the substance. When the following stages of PCP symptoms begin to appear, getting treatment is critical to avoid permanent psychological and physical damage. Getting addiction treatment for PCP as early as possible (even before dependence to the substance is established) is ideal to avoid the chance of incurring permanent disorders.
- Binge PCP use, wherein users take PCP in many day marathons, forgoing food or sleep
- Impacted memory
- Random flashback experiences
- Difficulties with annunciation, speech, and stuttering
- Chronic anxiety and paranoia
- Severe depression
- Suicidal thoughts
- Toxic psychosis
Treatment for PCP Addiction
Addiction to hallucinogens like PCP are readily treated with addiction treatment similarly to other hallucinogens like LSD addiction treatment and Ketamine addiction treatment. Getting help before chronic addiction is established is ideal, as this saves users incurring permanent damage as a result from untreated PCP use. During detoxification, recovering users will forgo using PCP entirely, and will be supported with medically assisted drug treatment for the duration of treatment and beyond.
Unlike other addiction treatment programs, those suffering from addiction to hallucinogens will need to undergo cognitive stabilization, which allows patients to successfully complete PCP addiction treatment.
Many don’t seek treatment for fear of undergoing a painful withdrawal, but with the inclusion of medically assisted drug treatment withdrawal is typically pain free. During detox, patients can expect to begin identifying the underlying causes of addiction as they work with addiction counselors to redress the mental dependence from PCP.
Since PCP negatively impacts critical neurotransmitters like serotonin and dopamine, seeking treatment immediately is critical in avoiding permanent brain damage. Those with serotonin deficiencies suffer from aggressiveness, depression, and an inability to effectively manage their moods.
During drug counseling recovering users learn how to change the way they think and respond to situations which may have forced them to use PCP. Going to an accredited treatment facility nearly guarantees patients will not have to experience any of the withdrawal symptoms of PCP recovery.
PCP Withdrawal Symptoms
- Impaired Reflexes
- Seizures without a History of Epilepsy
- Weight Loss
- Permanent Memory Loss/Damage
- Impaired Ability to Speak
- Chronic Anxiety
- Uncontrollable Impulses
The Dangers of Leaving PCP Addiction Untreated: PCP Overdose
If you didn’t know, it’s possible to fatally overdose from PCP. An overdose occurs when the body is inundated with too much of a substance and results in the shutdown of the central nervous system. Those who are not revived in time may become fatalities of an overdose. If you are ever witness to an overdose, ensure to turn the overdose victim on their side so they will not drown. Vomiting during an overdose is common.