Mescaline Addiction and Treatment

What often starts as experimentation can easily turn into a problem. Learn about Mescaline addiction and treatment options.

Mescaline is a hallucinogen, psychoactive phenethylamine chemical, best known for being the primary psychoactive component in Peyote and San Pedro Cacti. From earliest recorded time, Peyote has been used by natives in northern Mexico and the southwestern United States as a part of traditional religious rites. The top of the cactus above ground, also referred to as the crown, consists of disc-shaped buttons that are cut from the roots and dried. These buttons are generally chewed or soaked in water to produce an intoxicating liquid that can last around 12 hours. While mescaline produced rich visual hallucinations which were important to the native peyote cults, the full spectrum of effects served as a chemically induced model of mental illness. As a Schedule I drug, the abuse of this drug can lead to Mescaline addiction, the details of which are discussed below.

Common Street Name

Common street names that describe this hallucinogen are:

  • Mescalito
  • Mesc
  • Mescal
  • Topi
  • Moon
  • Mese

Sometimes Mescaline may be mixed with another drug on the street. For example, 'Snackies' refers to MDMA mixed with Mescaline.

Drug Classification

Mescaline is banned under international law, according to the 1971 UN Convention on Psychotropic Substances. In 1970 the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) and the Drug Enforcement Agency (DEA) released drugs classifications or schedules, under the Controlled Substance Act (CSA), which - enforced by the DEA - regulates the manufacture, importation, possession, use and distribution of certain narcotics, stimulants, depressants, hallucinogens, anabolic steroids and other chemicals. The schedules organize drugs into groups based on their risk of abuse or harm.

In the United States, Mescaline is under the Schedule I of Controlled Substances, because of its high potential for abuse and the potential to create severe psychological and/or physical dependence.

Drug History and Use

Mescaline was first isolated and identified by German chemist Arthur Heffter in 1897, but the use of mescaline cacti has been documented in North & South America for thousands of years. Immediately after European subjugation of the native populations in the Americas, Peyote and San Pedro Cacti use became persecuted by Christian zealots and the mescaline-using traditions were forced to go underground.

In the late 1800s these traditions slowly began a resurgence as North American Indians began incorporating peyote use into their religious practices and persecution in South America diminished. Mescaline is considered one of the classic psychedelic/entheogen, with a long history of traditional use in North and South America, formalized modern ritual use in the Native American Church, considered by many experienced users as uniquely powerful, and widely known througout the world because of the many accounts of its use.

Both synthetic and extracted crystalline mescaline are available on the underground markets, but both are rare and usually quite expensive. Mescaline concentration in cacti varies from one species to the next. Peyote is traditionally eaten in pairs of buttons, with anwhere from a single pair (2 buttons) to dozens of pairs of buttons (24 or more) being consumed over the course of an evening/night.

Peyote was banned federally in the United States in 1967 and was placed in Schedule I when the Controlled Substance Act was passed in 1971.

Side Effects

Use of this drug will result in significant alterations in perceptions, including the perception of complete hallucinations. One person, one day, may take Mescaline and enjoy the altered awareness effects he or she experiences, and then the next day, have a terrible experience.

Some of the most common Mescaline side effects are:

  • Altered vision
  • Dilated pupils
  • Faster heart rate
  • Increased blood pressure
  • Higher body temperature
  • Nausea
  • Vomiting
  • Changes in motor reflexes
  • Shaking hands or feet
  • Sweating
  • Dizziness
  • Numbness
  • Contractions of intestines or uteru

Researchers believe that Mescaline abuse could result in effects like damage to blood vessels, convulsions and permanent brain damage.

The effects of Mescaline may be intense for two full hours, but the overall effects of the drug can last as long as twelve hours. Flashbacks are likely to occur with mescaline, as they are with LSD. This means a person could re-experience a mescaline trip months or years after the drug was taken.

Addiction & Dependency

Mescaline addiction is not a physical process; however it is a psychological effect that make it a danger to its users. After the first use a person can become addicted to its psychedelic effects, using it on a regular basis. The more often it is used, the more of the drug the person will need to achieve the desired effects, this can be a danger of producing health effects and damage to the brain. Club drugs such as Mescaline are typically used in binges where the person takes the drug throughout the weekend, partying without sleep and then crashes when stopping its use. They may seem energetic throughout the weekend, excitable and more outgoing. On week days they will seem weak, fatigued, uncomfortable and irritable. By the time the weekend returns the use of Mescaline relieves their discomfort and another binge begins.

Clear symptoms of a Mescaline addiction are:

  • Extreme euphoria
  • Feelings of anxiety or panic
  • Feeling relaxed or detached from surroundings
  • Hallucinations, which can affect any of the senses – visual, auditory, etc
  • Illusions
  • Increased intensity of emotions and sensations
  • Mood swings
  • Paranoia
  • Synesthesia, or a mix-up of senses, such as hearing colors or seeing sounds
  • Temporary psychosis

In order to be able to find the appropriate Mescaline addiction treatment, it is important to recognize that these types of addictions are based on habit and conditioned response, rather than to profound alteration of the body systems. Mescaline addiction treatments are, therefore, aimed at psychological approaches rather than medical ones.

Treatment for Addiction

Getting rid of a psychological addiction like a Mescaline addiction, is primarily a matter of behavioral modification, motivational counseling, and in some cases supporting secondary therapy. It is possible to recover from Mescaline addiction. An essential part of this recovery is flushing out the toxins that remain behind when Mescaline or other drugs are abused through a detoxification process. A broad spectrum of therapies may be used to treat the individual, including one to one counseling, cognitive behavioral therapy and other treatments aimed at helping the patient identify and change their behaviors.

They may be encouraged to explore the deeper reasons for their drug use, what triggers it, and what alternative steps they can take in future. Because of the hallucinogenic and introspective nature of the drug, some users may be mentally scarred by their experiences and require more specialized psychological treatment to help them come to terms with their experiences and perceptions. Support groups with other recovering hallucinogen users may also be helpful in assisting the individual to not only adjust to a drug-free life, but to prevent relapses in future. Because of the action that Mescaline has on the brain, former users may suffer from psychological and mood imbalances even long after cessation, and may need continuing support following treatment.

If you or a loved one has been suffering from mescaline addiction or addiction to another substance, call the caring specialists to find out more information about positive steps you can take and the types of treatment available. Call today at 407-358-6225.


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