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Hallucinogens

Brief Description

Hallucinogens are a diverse group of drugs that alter perception (awareness of surrounding objects and conditions), thoughts, and feelings. They cause hallucinations, or sensations and images that seem real though they are not. Hallucinogens can be found in some plants and mushrooms (or their extracts) or can be human-made. People have used hallucinogens for centuries, mostly for religious rituals. Common hallucinogens include the following: ayahuasca, DMT, D-lysergic acid diethylamide (LSD), peyote (mescaline), and 4-phosphoryloxy-N,N-dimethyltryptamine (psilocybin). Learn more

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Statistics and Trends

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Monitoring the Future Study: Trends in Prevalence of Various Drugs for 8th Graders, 10th Graders, and 12th Graders; 2015 (in percent)*
Drug Time Period 8th Graders 10th Graders 12th Graders
Hallucinogens Lifetime 2.00 4.60 6.40
Past Year 1.30 3.10 4.20
Past Month 0.60 0.90 1.60
LSD Lifetime 1.30 3.00 4.30
Past Year 0.90 2.00 2.90
Past Month 0.40 0.60 1.10
Ketamine Past Year - - 1.40
PCP Past Year - - 1.40
Salvia Past Year 0.70 1.20 1.90

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National Survey on Drug Use and Health: Trends in Prevalence of Various Drugs for Ages 12 or Older, Ages 12 to 17, Ages 18 to 25, and Ages 26 or Older; 2014 (in percent)*
Drug Time Period Ages 12 or Older Ages 12 to 17 Ages 18 to 25 Ages 26 or Older
Hallucinogens Lifetime 15.00 2.50 16.60 16.20
Past Year [1.60] 1.70 6.30 0.80
Past Month 0.40 0.50 1.40 0.30
LSD Lifetime 9.40 [1.20] 7.00 10.90
Past Year 0.50 [0.90] 2.30 0.10
Past Month 0.10 0.30 0.30 0.10
PCP Lifetime 2.40 0.20 0.90 2.90
Past Year 0.00 0.10 0.10 0.00
Past Month ^ 0.00 0.00 ^

Related Publications

Hallucinogens Research Report Cover

Hallucinogens and Dissociative Drugs (Research Reports)

Published March 2001. Revised February 2015. Offers the latest research findings on hallucinogens and dissociative drugs, describing what they are, how they are abused, and basic facts about different drugs within this classification of drugs. En Español

Hallucinogens (DrugFacts)

Revised January 2016. Provides basic facts about various hallucinogens,  including how they are abused, how they affect the brain, and other health effects. En Español

Publication Cover

Hallucinogens (Mind Over Matter)

Published January 1997. Revised January 2009. Explains to young teens how hallucinogens affect the brain’s communication centers as well as its ability to control sleep and emotions. En Español

Other Resources

Past information on many drugs of abuse is available on our Archives site.

Clinical Trials

Clinical trials are research studies in human volunteers conducted to answer specific health questions. Learn about the NIH-sponsored clinical trials available to you.

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This page was last updated May 2014

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    National Institute on Drug Abuse. Hallucinogens Retrieved from https://www.drugabuse.gov/drugs-abuse/hallucinogens

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    Research Report

    Hallucinogens and Dissociative Drugs Publication

    Hallucinogens and Dissociative Drugs

    Offers the latest research findings on hallucinogens and dissociative drugs, describing what they are, how they are abused, and basic facts about different drugs within this classification of drugs.

    SAMHSA Treatment Locator
    Easy-to-read Drug Facts