How Long Does LSD Stay in Your System?

how long does lsd stay in your system

Lysergic acid diethylamide (LSD) is a hallucinogenic drug that is derived from a fungus that grows on grains.[1] LSD is commonly referred to as acid because it is created from lysergic acid. It is important to note that there are no medicinal uses for LSD and it is considered to have a high potential for abuse.

People who abuse this substance do so by putting paper in their mouth that was dipped in liquid LSD. On the other hand, some individuals might drop the liquid solution directly in their mouths. When used, acid can cause you to experience visual and auditory hallucinations.

If you or a loved one abuse LSD, you might be wondering how long it stays in your system. While it can be difficult to pinpoint the exact amount of time the substance remains in your body, there is a general timeline for you to familiarize yourself with.

What are the Effects of LSD?

When you take LSD, it is absorbed by your digestive tract. Once it reaches your liver, it will be metabolized into two chemicals known as 2-oxy-LSD and 2-oxo-3-hydroxy LSD.[2] These are the metabolites that drug tests look for to determine whether you have abused LSD.

The half-life of LSD is about 3 and a half hours, meaning half of a single dose will be out of your system in less than 4 hours’ time.

The effects of LSD and how long they last will depend on a variety of factors, including the dosage you took, how strong the acid is, and how you consume the drug. Typically, the effects of LSD will begin to take place between 20 to 45 minutes after you ingest it.

The common effects of acid include:[3]

  • Dilated pupils
  • Increased body temperature
  • Increased heart rate and blood pressure
  • Diminished appetite
  • Inability to fall asleep
  • Dry mouth
  • Tremors
  • An impaired depth and time perception
  • Distorted perception of shapes and sizes of objects
  • Lowered inhibitions
  • Hallucinations and delusions

These effects can last for up to 12 hours after you last took LSD. Unfortunately, there is no way to determine how a person will react to the substance. While some individuals have a pleasant and happy “trip,” others become agitated, scared, and panicked.

Factors that Affect How Long LSD Stays in Your System

Just like any other substance, there are factors that play a role in how long LSD stays in your system. For example, someone with a fast metabolism might eliminate the substance from their body faster than someone else can.

The factors that play a role in how long acid stays in your system include:

  • Body mass
  • Hydration levels
  • Tolerance
  • The pH of your urine
  • Age
  • Whether you are abusing other substances
  • How often you abuse LSD
  • The potency and dosage of the acid you take

Age is a big factor in how long drugs like LSD remain in your body. To explain, your organs become less healthy as you age, so older individuals may test positive for drugs or alcohol longer than young people.

How Long is LSD Detected on Drug Tests?

There are several different types of drug tests that might be used to detect LSD in your system. The most common drug test used is a urine test, where a medical provider collects a sample of your urine to test for drug metabolites. However, other tests use blood, saliva, or hair samples to detect illicit substances like LSD in the body.


Urine drug tests are the most popular. LSD is detectable in your urine 8 hours after you consume it and for up to 4 days after you last used the drug.


How long LSD is detectable in your blood depends on how much you have taken. A larger dose might be detectable for up to 16 hours after you last consumed it. However, small doses might only show up in a blood drug test 8 hours after you abused it.


Saliva tests are not as reliable as other forms of drug testing, and they cannot detect LSD in your system.


While hair tests are the most reliable form of drug screening, they are not commonly used because these tests are expensive and sometimes produce false positives. However, hair follicle drug tests can detect any substance that you consumed for up to 90 days, including LSD.

Get Help for LSD Abuse Today

If you or a loved one frequently abuse LSD, it’s important to be aware of the risks. LSD can cause significant adverse effects on your mental health, including increasing your risk for anxiety and depression. Even further, routine abuse of LSD can lead to hallucinogen-persisting perception disorder (HPPD), which causes you to experience frequent flashbacks of the effects of a hallucinogenic drug.

If you are ready to regain control over your life, contact Moving Mountains Recovery Center today for more information on our substance abuse treatment programs.


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