D-lysergic acid diethylamide, known on the street as LSD and “acid”, is one of the most common hallucinogens that are abused recreationally. Hallucinogens significantly alter the user’s perception of reality, time, sounds, thoughts, and feelings. It also produces intense visual hallucinations and changes in mood. The chemical it is derived from, lysergic acid is also found in a deadly fungus that grows on moldy rye and other staple grains.

It goes by many different names other than acid or LSD, such as blotter, tabs, dots, gels, and more. On the street, it can come in as many different forms as it has names. Most popularly, it is seen as blotter paper which has been soaked in an acid solution and dried. The paper is placed on the tongue and the acid is allowed to absorb into the mouth. The acid can also be “dropped” onto various items that are then consumed, such as sugar cubes and gummy bears.

What are Acid Gel Tabs?

Acid gel tabs are also known as windowpane acid and are one of the most popular and possibly dangerous ways to consume LSD. Acid gel tabs are a particularly potent form of acid where the LSD and alcohol solution is mixed with gelatin as a firming agent then pressed into a mold of some sort. 

The shapes of the molds can be a signature or tradition with some, and acid gel tabs generally contain some sort of food coloring as well. This will usually be how they are referred to on the street, such descriptions as “blue pyramids” or “yellow sunshine”, for blue pyramid and yellow circle shapes.

Acid gel tabs have a much longer shelf life than a traditional acid-alcohol solution or blotter acid. They are frequently dosed with higher levels of LSD, and so they can be much more difficult to handle for those who are not experienced. This can have psychological repercussions down the road for some.

Short & Long Term Side-Effects of Taking Acid Gel Tabs

The physical health effects of taking acid gel tabs are often relatively minimal, though the mental and emotional effects can be noticeable. Usually, acid gel tabs do not create a significant chemical dependency like many other drugs, so when someone who uses acid gel tabs occasionally, or even frequently, stops using them, there can be some negative effects.

Once a user consumes the acid gel tab, the effects will often begin to set in within an hour, with the average dose lasting about 8 hours, and larger doses reaching 12 hours or more. In the short term, the effects of acid gel tabs can include:

  • Euphoria
  • Altered perception
  • Blood pressure increases
  • Body temperature increases
  • Significant confusion
  • Hallucinations and delusions
  • Anxiety and extreme paranoia
  • Feelings of leaving their body or projecting
  • Becoming unsure of the current reality
  • Experiencing all matter as merely energy condensed to a slow vibration

Long-term effects can be as varied as the short-term effects, and just as unpredictable. With heavier use or longer, more consistent use of larger doses, users may experience a larger proportion of negative experiences with acid gel tabs, often referred to as “bad trips”. These bad trips can lead to full-on psychological trauma for those who experience them.

The long term effects of using acid gel tabs are still someone uncertain, but they can include:

  • Dangers presented by unpredictable and dangerous flashback events
  • Infection, sexual or otherwise, from large amounts of risky behavior, when using acid gel tabs
  • Tolerance to doses that are taken regularly

Are Acid Gel Tabs Addicting?

Since acid gel tabs do not generate much, if any chemical dependency issues, the effects are largely psychological in nature. Since every user’s biology is different, the exact symptoms of withdrawal can vary to a large degree from person to person.

Another difference in users of acid gel tabs is that those that abuse acid will not require any significant medical detox procedures. One of the factors that lead people to use more and more, or larger and larger doses of acid gel tabs is that they will often begin to build a tolerance to LSD.

There is also a phenomenon where users of acid gel tabs will not be able to get much if any effect from the LSD if they have taken it for more than two days in a row. In most cases, they will find that after “tripping” for two consecutive days, on the third day the acid gel tabs don’t seem to work much, if at all. This can lead to using larger and larger doses in order to “break through” and obtain the experience that they want.

How to Get Help if Addicted to Taking Acid Gel Tabs

A large number of people are able to find their most significant successes, using traditional methods of recovery such as informing family and friends to help maintain accountability but also to leverage them for help if needed. If you or someone you love may be addicted to taking acid gel tabs, reach out and let them know, or understand yourself, that there is help and support available if it is wanted. Many people simply do not understand how large their support network is until they open up about their addiction and begin to seek help.

Some tips for holding the line when it comes to recovery include:

  • When choosing to quit, stick to it. Pick a date, and make it absolute
  • Try some alternatives and distractions, and keep track of what you find success with, so you can expand on it
  • Make it a point to avoid triggering situations or people that might make you want to use acid gel tabs again
  • Know that healing and recovery is not a linear process, and go at your own pace

There are additional benefits to be found by working with an experienced treatment center that can help you create and maintain an effective customized plan to help you keep your sobriety. In fact, seeking help through this method is proven to be the most effective and beneficial way to set yourself up for a lifetime of successful recovery. Therefore, if you or a loved one is struggling with addiction or dependence on a drug, it would be in the best interest of the individual to seek help through an inpatient rehab facility.