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Is there any definite way to prove I have HPPD and am not overanalyzing normal visual anomalies?


nothingbutbluntz
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A few months ago I was so worried about my HPPD symptoms that I thought I would go schizophrenic.

I did alot of acid and mushrooms in the past year, about 50 tabs of acid and a good 3oz of mushrooms.

I have mild visual snow, mild afterimages, halos and starbursting on lights at night time, ifI stare at a wall for over 2 seconds it starts to gently move

I see mild, broken patterns on textured surfaces 

If I move my perspective to the left while staring at a focal point on a textured surface, to the right of the centre of my visual field, I see all the edges of the textures swirl in a counter-clockwise motion, If i move right, it's to the left of the centre of my vision and the swirl is clockwise.

 

The reason I don't think I have HPPD now is because my friend who has had absolutely no psychedelic experience and has smoked cannabis under 7 times says (and this is after more than a year or two of no cannabis use) that he has all of the exact same things happen to him *WHEN HE LOOKS FOR IT

 

I think I may just be looking for these visual anomalies everyone experiences, so much so that I expect them there. I think i have created enough synapses in my brain in the past 4 months of constant observation for visual anomalies that these synapses are firing and I am noticing these issues without even thinking about it sometimes. Can anyone give me a definitive way for me to know for certain I have HPPD?

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Well, not really. After I first got visual shit going on I noticed that smoking weed made it much more prominent which it didn't beforehand, so I guess in that way I knew for sure. Not that I'm recommending you go out and get fried to find out, hah. A bunch of us on here have gotten all the usual tests and scans and come up "normal", though there are those who've had unusual EEG/qEEG results. While obviously in genuine cases of HPPD something has to have changed, it's likely on such a small scale that it mightn't even be apparent in autopsy analysis, who knows. For the most part all the most prominent symptoms are very subjective, so people only really have your word to go on. For us who say we know for sure, the changing of our perceptions was so quick and considerable that there really couldn't be any other explanation. If that's not the case for you then there's not much you can do, apart from compare yourself to others, though evidently that's not all that reliable. 

 

Do you suffer any of the more unpleasant symptoms? Cognitive/memory impairment, DP/DR, brain fog, head pressure, severe abnormal anxiety, etc.? If you're only really affected by the visuals, and they're mild enough that they seem to fall within the realm of normal variation (given people like your friend already experience similar stuff) and you don't know for sure that they're actually due to your drug use, then I'd say you're pretty damn lucky and should just try to put all this behind you and go on living. HPPD visuals have no distinct cure, except time and healthfulness. Neither though do they pose any real threat to your wellbeing and quality of life, so long as they aren't indicate of further impairment/damage. Worrying about them certainly isn't going to make them go away, but it will consume your time and drain your enthusiasm if you let it. Not to mention people frequently say being incredibly stressed and anxious about their symptoms only makes them worse. 

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No cog/mem impairment, dp/dr is a no, brain fog maybe? definition of such?  had a few months of rather intense anxiety after some rather bad mushroom trips however that has levelled out. i'm rather depressed lately. I've stopped smoking pot (was a daily smoker for 4 years until october 27th) but thinking of starting again due to depression

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my thoughts have long been that the visual distortions we experience arent necessarily "not there" ... we may be experiencing real stimuli but in a way our brains arent normally wired to see. whether triggered by herb shrooms acid coke mdma or meth.. the reason so many experience so similar of longterm effects is because its not just in our heads. think about how someone would react if all of a sudden they were able to see ultraviolet frequencies of light. if they had no mental reference for that spectrum their brains would still try to assimilate the stimuli.... again think about blind people with damage to the eye but not brain. their brains convert the extra bandwidth to other senses, sometimes picking up things outside the normal range of hearing... some even still pick up visual signals outside of their normal visual pathways.. and the brain winds up converting this stimuli to something somewhat recognizable. 

 

i know this doesnt answer the original question, but maybe the question isnt really is it one or the other but, is there really that much a difference? 

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  • 1 month later...

Bump because relevant

Update to my situation, I have resumed smoking pot every day with almost no effects to my supposed HPPD

Lemon tekked 2 grams of mushrooms about a week ago, noticed nothing abnormal in my visual field.

Not sure what to think about it at this point, either I don't have HPPD, or I do and I'm just so used to it i don't even notice the changes?

IDK MAN any takers?

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Ya when u have hppd u can't even smoke weed because it brings u back to ur bad trip and the anxiety is fucking crazy and intolerable.. Trust.. Most hppders can't even drink coffee to be honest.. There is also degrees of hppd in terms of severity.. There has been peeps who have committed suicide from Hallucinations so that's pretty severe.. I didn't here u mention tinnitus?? That's a real exasperating symptom that drives u nuts.. Other than that it sounds like ur okay.. Usually you get hppd from ur first intoxication from the psychedelic drug and u usually wont go back to it because it would feel like a suicide mission. Good luck!!

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If you don´t have psychosis it sounds like HPPD. Don´t worry too much, I thought the same as you when I got weird symptoms. Read an article about psychosis and find out you don´t have it, most probably.

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Yes there is a way of knowing if you have HPPD.
Pretend that you don't have it. Go through your life without even bothering about whether you have HPPD or not.
Why? Because people with HPPD bother because they HAVE HPPD.

If you go through your daily activities without noticing any visual abnormalities unless "You look for them." then I can tell you that you do NOT have HPPD.
For me, which I am absolutely 100% certain that I have HPPD see the visual abnormalities 24/7, every second no matter where I look I can only see static and distortions, eyes closed or open, bright OR dark.

Of course the case could be that I have "more" HPPD/Visual Snow, and you have less, but that also means that all people have HPPD/Visual Snow to some extent, since it's a scale from perfect perception to more distorted perception, where HPPD is the threshold where the perception becomes relatively WAY more distorted compared to what the average person has, resulting in it being noticed as a medical condition.

Everything is relative, and chances are you probably have relatively normal vision.

EDIT: By the way no matter what be careful with drugs, hallucinogens in particular. Just because you don't have HPPD doesn't mean that you can't get it!
My HPPD started slow and was VERY minor at first, and usually went away after a few days or so, which made me ignore it too much and I continued taking hallucinogens up until the point where I could no longer ignore it, and regret started to fill me and that's when hell broke loose.

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  • 2 weeks later...

Hppd IS related to over-analyzing one's own perception.    This leads to a cycle of focusing on it more which amplifies it more and so you focus on it more.  

 

So instead of trying to prove you have HPPD, why not focus on other things?   The more you focus on other things, the more Hppd will fade into the background and become less important.

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I was just reading the messages and looked up out my big bay window I could see the text words stream in a long ribbon like banner sailing across the trees like in a turquoise blue/purple color.. That's kind of hard to ignore.. The picture on the wall in my house which I see in my peripheral vision when I look away is completely distorted with three perimeter thick lines that shoot off of it like a star. (I forgot to make a wish) Channel vision is a little bit more fun in the sun and u can't forget tinnitusation

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I was just reading the messages and looked up out my big bay window I could see the text words stream in a long ribbon like banner sailing across the trees like in a turquoise blue/purple color.. That's kind of hard to ignore.. The picture on the wall in my house which I see in my peripheral vision when I look away is completely distorted with three perimeter thick lines that shoot off of it like a star. (I forgot to make a wish) Channel vision is a little bit more fun in the sun and u can't forget tinnitusation << that word deserves a standing ovation. Tinnitus is a nice uninvited ringing, high pitch, blunts of scream piercing through ur head everyday 24/7. This is just a few symptoms of no sympathy I personally find this virtually impossible to just ignore.. Doctors and specialists need to start looking at this seriously people have taken their own lives because of it no joke.. Tolerance can only last so long into the progression of the distortions and disturbances. This is not something to just accept or ignore by any means or measures. There is a lot of options on this site that plenty of peeps have had experiences with just dig up a few rocks u never know what u might find.. That's all folks!!! Hppdfor24longfuckingyearsandactuallyinmy25thnowwishmeluck!!

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I used to hear that a lot - that I was over-focusing on anomalies that everyone sees, and all the rest.  Like everything I suppose, there's a continuum:  to some extent, yes, I over-focused but that's because it was hard to ignore that shit that didn't used to be there was now there, undeniably.  So one of the best treatments is to practice "mindfulness" and other mental disciplines to control the amount of attention you give the visual artifacts, as best you can.  It's hard when the symptoms are severe.

 

You may have it mild now, it may get worse, it may not, and whether you "have it" or not, is almost irrelevant: you are noticing things, and they concern you enough to be here asking about it, so the cautionary principle says to be careful and don't tempt fate.  If you have it only this mildly now, count your blessings and stop doing drugs, because you really won't be happy if it develops into severe HPPD like some of us have had. 

 

"Be afraid." Fear exists for a reason.  Get clean.  Good luck!

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How predictable.    'Gill, you must not have REAL hppd'

 

Guess what; back before this new forum I had over a thousand posts on the old forum.  I used to think about Hppd all the time.   Come here and discuss about it.  Fixate on it.

 

Now I don't.  

 

Fixation on whether visuals are improving day to day is one's worst enemy.   You have to let it go.   As you focus on other things, the brain re-adjusts to amplifying focus on other things and Hppd fades into the background.  

 

I challenge anyone here to not come to this forum for a month and not think about Hppd during that time...  If that sounds difficult then you are in a state of obsession. 

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I challenge anyone here to not come to this forum for a month and not think about Hppd during that time...  If that sounds difficult then you are in a state of obsession.

Much like difficulty not thinking about a leg which hurts means that you're obsessed with legs, not that you have a leg injury...

I had HPPD for years without it interfering with my life. I ignored it most of the time, but of course I thought about it, since it was clearly noticeable.

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Seeing distortions once in awhile is much different then having an alert reaction to them.    I see them to once in awhile too.  But my old reaction was to automatically think 'that's a problem that I must give all focus now'.... of course this just amplifies them.   

 

But, if one sees them momentarily, but then brushes them off as not a threat, not needing immediate attention, they fade into the background.   

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Seeing distortions once in awhile is much different then having an alert reaction to them.    I see them to once in awhile too.  But my old reaction was to automatically think 'that's a problem that I must give all focus now'.... of course this just amplifies them.   

 

But, if one sees them momentarily, but then brushes them off as not a threat, not needing immediate attention, they fade into the background.

Definitely, fearing the visuals is very detrimental. No question about it! :)

I cannot say for certain (and neither can you) that 'ignoring' the visuals diminishes them in the long run. I can see how you could have extreme visual symptoms which would make it impossible to ignore. But I've never felt anxiety about the visuals, so I guess I'm not really capable of assessing that.

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Definitely, fearing the visuals is very detrimental. No question about it! :)

I cannot say for certain (and neither can you) that 'ignoring' the visuals diminishes them in the long run. I can see how you could have extreme visual symptoms which would make it impossible to ignore. But I've never felt anxiety about the visuals, so I guess I'm not really capable of assessing that.

 

I'm saying right now my visuals have diminished from ignoring them.    The brain adapts to whatever we feed it sensory .

 

If you don't have anxiety, or worry , about Hppd then why bother giving it any attention?   

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I'm saying right now my visuals have diminished from ignoring them.

Yes you are, and that is nothing but a claim. You ignored them, and you got better. Who knows, you might have simply recovered whether you ignored it or not. You're assuming causation where there is only correlation.

 

If you don't have anxiety, or worry , about Hppd then why bother giving it any attention?

Because it's there. Is it really so strange? I'm having visual disturbances which are sometimes distracting and can make it a challenge to read. Of course I notice them! It's just that I don't panic over them.

It really does sound like your HPPD had no practical implications for you. Then it must have been of the milder variety.

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Yes you are, and that is nothing but a claim. You ignored them, and you got better. Who knows, you might have simply recovered whether you ignored it or not. You're assuming causation where there is only correlation.

 

Because it's there. Is it really so strange? I'm having visual disturbances which are sometimes distracting and can make it a challenge to read. Of course I notice them! It's just that I don't panic over them.

It really does sound like your HPPD had no practical implications for you. Then it must have been of the milder variety.

 

Do you not believe the brain adapts to whatever we focus on?      

 

You don't seem to be having any problems reading what I wrote..

 

I used to have what some would call 'severe hppd'.    It wasn't until I realized that what makes it severe was fixation.    It's not some static condition that never changes.

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Do you not believe the brain adapts to whatever we focus on? [

I don't believe in basing one's views on simplistic generalities about how the brain works.

 

You don't seem to be having any problems reading what I wrote..

I never said that it made reading impossible, did I? Far from it. I'm just saying that it makes it harder, for me. Focusing on the symptoms gets you nowhere, agreed, but ignoring them isn't necessarily possible.

I used to have what some would call 'severe hppd'.    It wasn't until I realized that what makes it severe was fixation.    It's not some static condition that never changes.

Well, I'm glad you got better.

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I am aware of of the 'plasticity' of the brain. All I'm saying is that it is easy to abuse fairly general ideas about the brain, so that they seem to fit one's purpose. But you seem to misunderstand the point I'm making. I'm not saying that "ignoring" the symptoms (in lieu of a better word) cannot aid real recovery. I'm just saying that we do not know, and that generalizing from one's own experience is, well, treading on shaky ground at best.

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