LSD, which is more commonly known as acid, is a hallucinogenic drug that has typically been on the party scene for many years. But despite being around for a while, LSD continues to intrigue people with questions raised as to how it works, how long it lasts and the wider effects it has on the mind and body.

Here, we explore everything there is to know about LSD and answer the question, ‘How long does acid last?’.


Does LSD Stay In Your System For Long?

LSD is a powerful substance that derives from ergot, a fungus found on grains such as rye. It’s important to remember that LSD can affect people in different ways, including affecting individuals differently depending on when they take it, how much they take and other personal factors. What’s more, the effects of LSD can range from mild to severe despite studies showing that it remains in the body for a relatively short amount of time.

When someone ingests LSD, the liver metabolises it and converts it into inactive compounds. The drug is then eliminated from the body through urine, sweat and saliva. Studies show that LSD’s half-life is relatively short, compared to other drugs that linger in the body for long periods of time. However, this is believed to contribute to its intense effects.


How Long Does LSD Last?

Again, it’s important to remember that an acid trip can be different each time LSD is taken, and it can vary from person to person. Typically, though, they can last anywhere from 6 to 12 hours, with the peak occurring around 2-4 hours after consumption. There are various factors which impact the duration of the acid trip, including dosage, individual tolerance and a user’s mental state. During these hours, individuals can experience a wide range of side effects, but the most common include hallucinations, altered perceptions and a sense of connectedness with others and the world around them.

After a few hours, users report an afterglow or a sense of well-being that is said to last for a few days. Despite many users feeling positive during this time, the impact on mental and physical health is a cause for concern. What’s more, the acid comedown that follows this can be very scary and even dangerous, with feelings of fatigue, sickness and emotional vulnerability common.


What Does Acid Do To You?

Research is ongoing regarding the long-term impact of LSD. However, we do know that LSD’s effects centre on the impact it has on the brain’s serotonin receptors. Serotonin is a neurotransmitter that is responsible for mood regulation and balance. When LSD is consumed, it alters this balance, leading to altered perceptions and an increase in emotions and thoughts.

Extreme hallucinations also characterise LSD consumption and the high that follows, changes in perception of space and time, and a heightened sensitivity. It’s not uncommon for users to experience varying emotions, including happiness and euphoria and even anxiety and introspection. These emotions and experiences can be very unpredictable, and the effect of LSD, just like many other substances, can be impacted by someone’s environment and mental state at the time of taking it.

It’s important to remember that LSD is extremely potent, even at small doses – and the dosage can have a big impact on the overall psychedelic experience. What’s more, microdosing, which is where individuals take small doses of LSD to boost creativity and mood, can also lead to full-blown hallucinations.


The Short-Term and Long-Term Effects of LSD

After consumption, it typically takes around 30-60 minutes for LSD to take effect. Very soon, individuals may experience enhanced colours, changes in perception of time and space, and visual distortions. They may also experience varying emotions, including euphoria, as well as an increase in creativity. Physically, short-term effects include dilated pupils, an increased heart rate and altered appetite. It’s also crucial to be aware that a bad trip could occur, leading to anxiety, paranoia and overall negative experiences.

Research into the long-term effects of LSD is still being carried out, with some studies implying a direct link between LSD use and psychological conditions. However, more research must be done in order to provide a definitive answer. Medical professionals and addiction recovery experts do advise that individuals with a history of mental health concerns, especially schizophrenia and psychosis, may be more at risk of LSD’s negative effects. Studies also show that the environment in which LSD is consumed can have a huge impact on the overall experience, which can have a direct physical and psychological effect on someone.


How Long Does Acid Stay In Your System?

As mentioned above, the length of time that LSD stays in your system will depend on how much has been taken, individual tolerance, and whether any other drugs or alcohol were consumed. However, various drug testing methods can detect LSD in the body for specific time periods.

  • Hair: LSD can be detected in hair follicles for up to 90 days, which means this is one of the longest detection windows for drug testing.
  • Blood: Typically, LSD only remains detectable in the blood for up to 12 hours after the substance has been consumed. This is usually in line with how long the drug’s effects last for.
  • Urine: Standard drug tests can detect LSD in urine for 1-4 days.
  • Spine: While very uncommon, a spinal tap can be used to detect LSD in the cerebrospinal fluid and can indicate recent usage.


How We Can Help

Whether you’re concerned about LSD’s effects on your own body or you want to get someone you know the help they need, our team can guide you through this challenging process. Knowing the effects of the drug, as well as common symptoms, can help you to be proactive in your approach, but getting in touch with a professional team for more advice and support is often essential in getting the right treatment.

So, if you have any questions about LSD or want to know what help is out there, reach out to our friendly and experienced team today.


  • [1] it typically takes around 30-60 minutes for LSD to take effect -