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Visuals for 3 weeks now - is this HPPD?


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I'm looking for some advice.


I've been experiencing visuals similar to that of mild acid for the last 3 weeks. It was on and off for the first week and now it's pretty much constant (when I wake up, lasts all day, still there when in bed at night). The last time I took acid was over 2 years ago.



I see a strong outline or aura around figures and objects. I have severe light sensitivity esp outdoors, when the sun is out, to the point where I'm unable to open my eyes fully. Colours sometimes change and appear very bright/sparkly/pulsating. Peoples' faces can be warped. Perspective can be a bit warped. Everything looks a bit cartoon-like esp when the visuals are strongest.
I originally assumed this was to do with acid flashbacks given the nature of the visuals however Talktofrank said that flashbacks are brief and unlike what I'm experiencing and Google led me to read about HPPD.
I'm unsure as to whether this is something I need to approach a GP about, or whether I'll be laughed at/patronised (as my GP tends to do). Or should I be approaching a mental health support organisation? (Or do I need an optician?!)  Or is there nothing a professional can do and should I just accept it!?
Thank you!
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Thanks for your reply.


Today I nearly fainted on the train - the visuals became very strong to the point where bright lights merged together and I completely 'whited' out. I felt nauseous, clammy, etc. Not uncommon on a rush hour train I know! But I can't help thinking it might be linked? Generally, my mental state is pretty good, never feel anxious, panicky or depressed, even since the visuals started in the last few weeks. I just thought there had to be a logical explanation!


Thanks for the advice - drugs and booze have stopped since the visuals started. I know that's not really an achievement considering it's been 3 weeks but I have no intention of taking anything again. In the past I would take MDMA, ketamine, cocaine pretty consistently at weekends for the last 9 or 10 years. In the last year that has dropped to maybe once every 2 months. Acid maybe 4 or 5 times in my whole life, the last occasion being 2 years ago... 2ci/2cb occasionally too. 


The way you phrase 'see a Dr if you feel the need to' suggests that there isn't a huge amount they can do? I think I will see one now anyway because of the fainting! But I know nothing about HPPD except what is on Wikipedia, is there anywhere I can find out more about it? Is there a reason why certain people get it? Is it linked to drugs? Sorry if I'm asking basic elementary stuff but I'm so clueless.

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i think really this forum is going to be one of your best sources of information straight from those going through it. the only thing i can say about doctors and treatment.... it may take some time for you to find something that works for you.. some of the people here have had luck, others havent, and some like me are too burned out on the medical industry in general to try until theres more concrete successes on something


i think most of us are here because of choices to take hallucinogens either too frequently or some just once or twice. i think also some of us are more predisposed to hppd due to other undiagnosed issues. it almost seems like a random crapshoot kind of thing but the more you read on our shared experiences the more you see similarities that would lead us all to this place.


either way good luck to you. if it doesnt get better at least know you're not alone, and if it does get better then just keep off the shit that got you here and be patient. the swings can suck and the loss of traction in processing reality can be hard to deal with.. but you're not alone. thats all that really matters in the end

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Thanks - I feel better having discovered this forum. I don't really know what I expect to hear from a Dr that I won't find here, maybe it's time to accept that they just won't be able to help this time. I don't want a prescription, rather just reassurance that it doesn't pose any serious health risks. I'm also trying to make a serious career as a professional pianist, which I would of course be devastated if I couldn't pursue.


As it stands, I find the symptoms reduce dramatically when I really concentrate on something like a complex task. Fortunately playing the piano helps.


The most intense and unpleasant visuals happen when I go outside in daylight... then it's like being on a constant acid trip.


No drugs or booze for me of course. I exercise regularly which I've read on here can help - though today was the first time I've tried to do any exercise since the visuals started and 2 hours later I faint on a train! Related? Who knows.

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i cant see why hppd would interfere with your playing of the piano so you should be ok. if anything you are correct in the assumption that keeping yourself occupied should help. and especially with music, thats something that already helps our brains adjust to different things, and combined with a slightly different world view due to the hppd may help you to find a more unique voice through your music.



and just to clarify how it can "help" you in situations requiring concentration/visualization , i dont think any of the coding and design work I have to do on a daily basis would be possible for someone who didnt have the strengths I have with visualization that trying to overcome hppd has given me. i can see the code i need to right as i'm in meetings discussing a final product thats barely in a design phase. and i imagine with music it would be quite similar for you. being able to mentally fill your headspace with the music you need to play before playing it. just keep yourself focused and busy and it wont control your life

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Could be anxiety messing up your pulse and blood pressure resulting in hypertension and the like and fainting.


Remember that anxiety is part, if not mostly, subconscious.


I had orthostatic hypotension(blood rush when standing up from sitting position) and general bad floodflow.

It developed about a month into hppd but it disappeared about 2-3weeks after. I did faint once from standing up.

I kind of believe I dont have anxiety and rather it was a symptom of hppd as I have had many other (only physical) symptoms come and go.

Like headpressure, bad blood flow, nerve zaps, cherry angiomas, and other random symptoms. 


Yeah being focused helps as long as you dont lose the power to focus since because of obsession to hppd. 

EX\ i have text fluid movement/dancing but if im focusing on what im writing rather that actually trying to see the letters move and such, i dont really see it. Its only when i stop typing and kinda look at this wall of text that it starts moving.

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etardnow... i absolutely hate the fluid text crap. i already had a bit of dyslexia beforehand anyways but i've always still been able to understand anything even if i cant see it in the correct order. past few years though its gotten to the point text appears to be floating above my screen, and let's say I have something with a series of the same letter or symbol like ///////  it will actually look like /\/\/\/\ to me. pain in the ass when you're dealing with code all day but like you said. i just power through what I have to write and then deal with rereading it afterwards. gotta trust my instincts more then anything 

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