Wow! I have only recently discovered that continuous flashbacks have a label! I have had HPPD since I was 12 years old. Now I am 60. I spent the school year dropping LSD, Psycibin, Mescaline, and Marijuana. One time I simply never came down. It intensified soon soon after. I knew of no one else who had this like I did! I was simply terrified! I only told my brother, not my parents. My biggest fear was that I would get uncontrollably higher. I had every symptom but the very worst was the feeling of not being fully present. The experience was like just arriving in my own body but realizing I had already been doing whatever it was, but not with full presence. Maybe this is "de-personalization"? I would explain it to various Doctors and Opthalmologists through the years and all I got was "hmm....."! So, I finally just learned to cope. Then about a year ago I found the name HPPD. The casebook description of symptoms were as if they had read my secret diary! I know that I was never diagnosed or believed, but I know what drugs I used and when the HPPD started. Now it has been 48 years! Definitely some of the symtoms are not as vivid as in the beginning, however, if I get tired or in a conglomerated atmosphere there they are. I also think after so many years these just become part of your normal perception. For me, HPPD did not go away.
How did I cope until now? I definitely quit any drug use immediately. I gravitated toward a simple Christian way of life, actually living with Old Order Amish at times, where I was not bombarded by electric stuff. I think those who have HPPD will seriously have to deal with sensory overload and seek out a peaceful existence on many levels.
Live your life anyway. I raised 7 children, grandchildren and life goes on, just looking through Kaliedoscope eyes!
Be healthy! Be smart and realize sometimes one stupid mistake done in youth can change your life forever! In my case, I just wanted to be cool in 1969! I really didn't realize the risks. How true it is that we reap what we so!
I want to cry...that I lived my whole life with this and never found anyone else with this or knew even that it was recognized!
The only report on flashbacks I ever heard of said that they think LSD creates new neural pathways in the brain.That was maybe 30 yrs ago!
Wow! I am truly impressed at my own survival!
Trails, pulsating breathing walls, tinnitus, time slowing down, colors, everything. Even dialated pupils. Sigh. How exhausting at times!
It has helped me just to keep in mind that my own perception has been tweeked.My chemistry was altered.
I would not wish this on anyone! But, if you have it, just live your life as peaceful as you can. Do everything you normally would do because your heightened perception maybe can be helpful in other unexpected ways.
Don't do anymore drugs.
Dont tell others who may not understand.
We've been tricked by the devil's potions!
God bless us all!
I came to talk to you about my symptoms a little bit. I'm Brazilian, so if I say something wrong, I apologize, but I'm still not fluent in English.
About 11 months ago I tried lsd with a friend, after an hour we used weed, and after that I had a very bad trip. Only today I was able to find this forum, because until then I did not even know what I really have. After using lsd, I have never used lsd or weed again. Since then, I have a lot of anxiety, sometimes I feel very depressed, and I really feel some visual effects, such as sensitivity to light, things seem to vibrate a little, and it seems that sometimes I see traces in moving things.
What makes me bad is that I can never stop thinking about it all, I try to fight against my own mind not to think about it, but it's very difficult, when I realize it, I'm thinking about it. From what I understand I have hppd, but is it normal for me to think about it constantly? Sometimes I think I'm going to go crazy.
This site was very inspiring to me, until then I was very afraid of what happened to me, and not knowing that there are so many other people with the same problem. So, THANK YOU for making me a little calmer. I will accompany you always now, hoping that I will improve. Thank you.
So, after a hospitalization for a suicide attempt I've been put on 10mg Abilify (aripiprazole) and have been taking it daily.
Haven't noticed my symptoms getting worse. Perhaps slightly, but nothing unbearable at this point.
Additionally I have tried 1:1 THC:CBD weed with no worsening of symptoms. This suggests to me at least that the mechanism behind my HPPD is entirely different than the common hypotheses.
I was posting over on the HPPD subreddit every now and again, trying to help people out. Someone linked this forum, so I figured I'd pop over here and introduce myself. As many of you know, HPPD can be the cause of much loneliness and feelings of alienation. I've met two people total in my life that also have HPPD, but it's not a topic they were looking to discuss in depth. Just a note, I'm also an alcoholic and addict in recovery with about two and a half years clean.
My case started when I was about 22-years-old. My first "real" drug experience (not weed or booze) was what kicked it off. It was my first time taking MDMA. I also took about a .5g of mushrooms as well, which was also my first time. It was fantastic, really. I've dealt with depression and anxiety my whole life, and I thought I had figured out how to fix that problem. On the comedown, I had an episode of intense hallucinations, seeing people who weren't there, skulls flying around the room, blood dripping down the walls, the whole nine yards. After a few hours, my vision returned back to normal, but the event wasn't enough to deter me from overcoming my nature as an addict. After a few weeks, I was back at it, but those early times, I had no consequences, so I wrote it off as me mixing MDMA and mushrooms that first time. Eventually, I started taking molly more and more often, as well as mixing hallucinogens into my repertoire, and the hallucinatory episodes started recurring, taking a little bit longer each time for my vision to return to normal. After a three day binge, my vision never went back. CEVs, recurring night terrors, patterns, colors, things breathing, floaters, trailers, depersonalization, I had the whole gambit in that first year, only having the depersonalization go away after that period. It was rough for sure. Thoughts of suicide were constantly there, just below the surface. I gave half-hearted attempts to seek out help, but there was a part of me that loved the insanity. I loved being crazy. I loved being unique.
I backed down off the hallucinogens, cycling through different phases of drugs and drinking, and the HPPD was always there, continually getting worse, always ready to torment me. I believed it was my curse for being such a shitty person. I deserved it. It was my punishment. As my using progressed and my life fell apart around me, my actual insanity intensified. I couldn't drive over a bridge without thinking about driving myself off. I couldn't hold a knife without wanting to jam it in my throat. I couldn't show up for work anymore, so I quit and moved back in with my parents. I thought I would finally have peace, but there was none to be found for me. I drank daily, used cocaine as often as I could buy it, trying to get away from the reality that was always right in front of my eyes. I wasn't even safe from my torment with my eyes closed. I hit my bottom 06/08/15 at 25. I went to treatment for substance abuse, and that was the last time I took an illicit drug. I wish I could say that after staying sober was a fix for me, that it got better right away, but it didn't. I was without my coping mechanisms, so that first year sober was worse mentally for me than my first year with HPPD. I had to relearn how to deal with life, to learn how to approach situations as an adult. Luckily, I learned a lot in that treatment center, and I continually learn more in my chosen 12-step program.
I sit here enjoying my new life that has come from deciding to actually do something about my problems instead of wallowing in my misery. I just moved to a new town to be with my girlfriend, started a new job that has more opportunities for me than I ever thought possible, and know a peace that has been a mystery to me, except through chemical manipulation. My visuals are just as intense as ever, CEV, floaters, trailers, etc, but they're just there. They don't define me as a person. I'm waiting patiently for the day, if it ever comes, that I can see like I used to. If not and I have to be secretly trippy all my life, so be it. The one thing that does bother me about my situation is the difficulty I have explaining it to someone else, and that's why you see me here today. You guys know, and there's so much comfort in being around understanding company.
So, for the past week or so I've been smoking a strain that's nearly all CBD and (almost) no THC (I think it's about 13% CBD and maybe 1% THC). I smoke it in joint form, usually shortly before bed.
I haven't noticed anything getting better or worse. However, it has done wonders for my insomnia and helps me feel relaxed before I hit the sack. Excellent stress relief.
I have a strain that's nearly 1:1 THC to CBD to try still, so I have no idea how the THC will play into things. Planning on doing that this weekend since this will give me ample recovery time should I have a bad time (I don't expect to though).
Also, the joints I roll tend to be pretty light, about the size of a hand-rolled cigarette.
Also, as a sidenote, I have asthma and the smoke hasn't aggravated it all, usually only if I take a hit that was a little too much. Even then, a few hearty coughs and sips of water later and I'm fine