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About a week ago I began supplementation with Delta-8-thc. I can not recommend this to anyone based off of scientific fact or knowledge as there is a severe dearth of research on it. I have never been able to handle the anxiety caused by cannabis but have always been drawn to it. When I heard of an anxiolytics cannabinoid that was 60% as potent and great for pain, I hopped on board.
 

I will say that the most unexpected thing is within a few hours the underlying feeling of psychosis that has been with me since acquiring hppd severely lessened. It felt like... a key was put into the right spot. 
 

I’m posting this here mostly as a record. I really cannot say whether this is a good or bad thing for people with hppd as ymmv and I believe responses to drugs differ depending on what stage of recovery you are in. I have no idea if I would have had this Positive experience with D8-thc if I experimented with it in the first year of this condition. 
 

I will say, however, that it is an incredibly relaxing form of cannabis and feels very much like it effecting GABA B (and a) in some sort of fashion but not increasing concentrations of glutamate the way delta9 does. 
 

Anyway, hope this helps someone down the road looking for an answer to something. 

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  • 1 month later...

I wrote elsewhere about a negative reaction to Delta-8-thc through overuse. I have taken the steps to recover from it successfully afaik. There are some important things I need to note about my experience with it, both over time and the negative reaction.

 

The negative reaction brought on a host of hppd symptoms. Some were exacerbation of current ones, new symptoms (faded luckily), and resurgence of old symptoms (also gone). Now that things have calmed down, I want to say that delta 8 still continues to effect my life in profoundly positive ways even after complete cessation of drug for 10 days. Some of the worst and older permanent symptoms of hppd have been significantly reduced or faded completely. Most notable being anxiety and disassociation and difficulty empathizing. This is fascinating to me as it’s almost identical to in structure to thc... but I realize in the world of the brain and body that means little. My relief is palpable. 
 

Now onto more things of note during my experience.

 

1) I take a drug called pregabalin for muscle issues but it tends to leave me in a state of kindling for a period afterwords. This is noticeable for a few days, then regresses to the point I don’t notice it for a few more days. However, in that noticeable and unnoticeable state, if I intake cannabinoids such as delta8 or delta9, cbd, or even large doses of cbd I enter a panicked state that lasts until the cannabinoids have left my system or decreased enough for my brain to achieve homeostasis again. 
 

2) I take a drug called selegiline that acts as an mao-b inhibitor in doses under 10mg in the brain (includes accumulated doses in the brain I would expect) and an dual mao-a and b inhibitor above that. I generally take 1-2 mg every few days. Sublingual is much much stronger so I generally just do one mg if that is the route. Sometimes I have been known to take 5mg sublingual, however, when the depression is bad and I haven’t taken it in more than a few days. My experience with taking too much selegiline results in a, I’m assuming dopamine induced, panic attack that will not cease for hours after ingestion. Once my brain readjusts, the panic fades quickly. This has happed only handful of times over the years, mostly during my early days with it. while not comfortable when I screw up the dosing, I am accustomed to the feeling and can tolerate it pretty easily. This generally only occurs when I take 5mg two days in a row. While I cannot prove that this panic is dopamine induced, I have felt almost every type of anxiety that can be caused by the major neurotransmitters due to my prior experience with highly targeted drug withdrawals and overdoses, and that experience is they are quite different in their subjective feelings. (Low serotonin (ssri withdrawal), low or high dopamine (excess amphetamine dose and withdrawal, but more so excess live selegiline dose and withdrawal (more targeted moa), low gaba (benzodiazepine and to a lesser extent glutamate decarboxylase deficient states from gabapentin withdrawal (dirtier MOA)), high glutamate (genetics, ampakines, nmda agonists), high norepinephrine (excess Norepinephrine Reuptake Inhibitor dose). (Important to note that none of this past experience was within the last three years if not seven years or longer).

 

Normally if I’m in the state of kindling, I avoided cannabinoids. However, one day I misjudged how deep in kindling I was. Upon my intake of cannabinoids I experienced the usual high anxiety I was used to in that brain state. In my anxiety fog, I accidentally put a full 5 mg pill in my mouth along with my routine b12 sublinguals. I take a lot bad tasting drugs, so I didn’t really notice the selegiline until I had been sublingually absorbing for 20 min. I figured I might be fine, as I have taken 5mg before.

 

what occurred next was something I had not experienced since my days of using hallucinogens. Very suddenly I entered a state that was identical to a bad mushroom trip. I felt myself losing control of my grip on reality. It felt exactly the same as when I took 6.5 grams of shrooms (I know, I belong on this site clearly) during my foolish youthful experimentation 7 years ago. Had I not been accustomed to years and years of disassociative anxiety, I believe I would have lost it. Through breathing techniques, a lot of calming music, and a call to a loved one I trust, I was able to keep myself from falling over that mental fence, thank god. This state only lasted for about 30 min, before it faded to reasonable levels where I could be alone without spiraling. 
 

So what. The hell. Happened. 
 

I’ve taken d8 by itself.

 

I’ve taken d8 in kindling.

 

I’ve had selegiline induced panic before....

 

...but all combined, it was too identical to hallucinogenic freak out to not mention it here. My hope is, that through this experience, we can identify a key factor in what can cause a hallucinogenic freak out—extremely high levels of dopamine activity coupled with low gabergic activity (and subsequent high glutamate) in the presence of a hallucinogenic drug. Granted, while there are some unknowns here, with the information I have at my disposal I think it assumptive to chalk up to coincidence.

 

It is important to note that I have genetically EXTREMELY HIGH dopamine levels (current baseline dopamine activity is another story) . I metabolize it very slowly. It may seem ironic that I take dopamine inducing drugs as part of my protocol, but there are realistic reasons why I do that aren’t pertinent to this conversation and require their own lengthy post. I only relate this genetic information because when I accrued hppd, I was not taking dopaminergic drugs but I might as well have been since my brain state is similar to someone on a 5mg dose of adderal (I’m guessing, I’ve never taken adderal without these genes, using this example for others reference. When I was prescribed it my reaction to amphetamines was more on par with what I understand the potency of methamphetamine is. But to be frank, at least one of my hyper dopamine genes is exceedingly rare with under 1% reported (as much as this disorder go figure...). 
 

I also have naturally high levels of glutamate and low gaba. This is due to a gene mutation that effects the enzyme that converts glutamate to gaba, resulting in a double whammy of high glutamate low gaba. With less being converted over time than someone without the mutation, any drug that increases glutamate is liable to push the limits of those glutamate receptors faster than someone without the mutation taking an equivalent dosage.
 

If I am correct, part of what can induce hallucinogenic panic, and possibly hppd through out of control glutamate via agonization of 5ht2a receptors (downstream effect), is a combination of low gaba, high glutamate, high dopamine, and a hallucinogenic drug. 
 

If I had the ability to do experiments without ethical limitations, I would induce this state in subjects and give them dopamine antagonist drugs, nmda blockers, and possibly MAYBE something to increase gaba BUT NOT by allosteric modulation. Maybe not at all, as gaba can be strangely hallucinogenic in its own right. I suspect through anectodal reports of concurrent affliction of hppd through the use of hallucinogens in the same period as benzodiazepine drugs that the mechanisms in place on these receptor do not always respond well to change in this highly malleable brain state. 
 

Obviously though, that is impossible and I would never ever conduct such experimentation and neither do I endorse anyone trying this on themselves. It is only through my mistake that I even stumbled across this possibility. I reiterate that I was really on the fence for about 30 min and believe that had I tripped over, I would have difficulty erasing the profoundly deep long term neural pathways such a state might result in. 
 

Now, weeks after this event, I experienced the “negative event” that I referred to in my other post in the discussion forum. What was interesting is, in that brain state, I was unable to take selegiline at all without inducing panic. I stopped taking it and did not experience any withdrawals as I usually do if I stop suddenly (excessive sleep, depression). I theorize that part of what causes the emotional discomfort of hppd may be excess dopamine (at least in certain brain regions if not all, possibly high in places and low in others), and my brief brush with it again cause my brain to temporarily enter a hyper dopaminergic state. Once the negative event passed (took about a week of no use age of delta 8 or any cannabinoid), I was able to restart my selegiline protocol and responded favorably. 
 

Now, why traditional dopamine antagonist tend to worsen hppd symptoms in many remains a mystery to me. This may be because, while high dopamine may be bad in hppd, something else is broken that causes those drugs to have a bad reaction in patients. Or that, as I mentioned earlier, there may be a combination of low and high dopamine in different brain regions. It is important to note that while rare, some people with hppd do respond positively to antipsychotics and I have had discussions with some. I imagine symptoms and treatments outcomes for this disorder are HIGHLY genetically predisposed and are combination of unique brain insult, genetic propensity for imballances in neurotransmitter and receptor function, and  (see post in discussion) possibly altered Endocannabinoid functioning.
 

Part of the reason I am posting this is so other who know they have these gene mutations can understand their reactions. 
 

But most importantly, if you take anything away from this post it is this— I am WELL on my way to “recovery” from this disease. It has been 7 and a half years since my last dose of traditional psychedelic. While my experience with delta 8 has been positive, I do not believe anyone who is still in the early stages of hppd will respond favorably to it. In fact, I believe quite the oppsite. This belief is due to my theory that hppd manifests itself as brain injury and other some other dysfunction with the Endocannabinoid system. Delta 8 may help with the other dysfunction in the Endocannabinoid system but may be contraindicated for the brain insult. I imagine it would be very uncomfortable at the very least if what I have written here is even partly true. While I could be wrong on this, the ability to tolerate d8 early after hppd onset, I can only go off of what I know and can theorize. Luckily, there is a huge community of people out there ingesting this substance as we speak, many of which are poly drug users and no strangers to hallucinogens. We may see anecdotal reports similar to mine (I have already seen one post of someone stopping habitual daily heroin and benzodiazepine use cold turkey through D8 without discomfort) so I ask you all to keep your eyes out.
 

If I was to guess based off my own experience, a good indicator for if you can tolerate D8 might be if you still have a positive, or at least not horribly negative, response to CBG/delta-9-thc and CBD in that order.
 

I experienced several levels of hppd 7 years ago, before the final wham bam full fledged hppd that I was left with. My response to cannabinoids went from positive to negative as I went deeper down that hole. Like many I didn’t even know what hppd was until too late. 
 

I wish I knew whether people would respond positively to delta-8 early on in this disease, as I and you all know how horrible it is. I would give anything to help those poor souls. But we, I, must endeavor to do no harm, and can only suggest that those well on their journey with hppd, and are suffering in the “chronic” phase to try this drug. 


Lastly, if I am correct about my theories on the cannabinoid system, then it is also possible that my positive reaction to D8 may just as well be a negative reaction in others. (THEORETICAL) This would depend on the specificity of ones cannabinoid dysfunction (quite literally the shape of my receptors may be disfigured in a different way than yours). The only other cannabinoid I was taking that I still cannot tolerate now, in addition to d8, is CBG where before my reactions to it were overwhelmingly positive—if short lived. While this is not a concrete jump based off of any evidence but my own subjective experience, if you respond well to CBG you may respond well to D8.

 

On a personal note, I would prefer to not have to use delta 8  again, especially since I do not know how long I must abstain from it before it will be tolerable again. However, it is the only substance I know of that helps me with the muscle spasticity I was left with after my first brush with hppd (pregabalin requires long abstinence periods for me). At times, this spasticity can be so great that it pushes my bones out of alignment, and the pain can overwhelm my logical reasoning. I might feel forced to try it again. I will admire too—D8 is pleasurable. It would be nice from a social and relaxation standpoint to be able to use it in reasonable amounts. So far, for the time being, I wish to find other modalities to treat my spasticity and other less risky substances for relaxation. Had I not consumed D8 in excess, I do not believe I would be forced to make this choice, but I cannot say that for certain this reaction would not have happened over time even with a reduced dosage. The same way I believe if I had just used hallucinogens responsibly they could have potentially benefited me over the course of my life but may have still resulted in hppd even if micro dosed. Abrahams data on onset after x trips comes to mind....although I consider that data to be more indicative of the role of other variable environmental/neurological factors not yet understood than the idea that hppd is magically random and one can accrue it for no reason on the 50th trip.

 

In my first post in this thread, I tried to conceal my intense joy at this return in brain functioning as to not cause false hope in others. It is my hope that this effect persists over time. I will endeavor to continue to update this thread as time goes on and update the community as the the permanence of these positive effects. 
 

I had never gotten used to living without my full depth of emotion. I’ve tried so so many different chemicals to try and bring back this ability to feel. I had gotten close, maybe 90% there, but I honestly had come to the conclusion that brain damage was the only possible explanation, as even when I was able to induce my most positive emotional state post HPPD through those chemicals, I found there was something distinctly missing. Something that I do feel now. Something beautifully human. There is so much we do not know about HPPD; do not give up hope, brothers and sisters. 

 

All my love,

oms
 

Edited by Onemorestep
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  • 2 weeks later...

Update: emotional range is still increased.
 

Before hppd I would always cry during emotional scenes during movies. That ceases with hppd onset and never returned, even during very good periods. Now, that is back. In fact, sometimes I can cry at will now. 

 

it is still my belief that delta-8-thc can exacerbate hppd and should be approached with extreme caution. this did not “cure” me. In fact, my overuse has very much hurt me. If I didn’t have access to extremely good medical care (hyperbaric chambers, so many supplements, free time to heal, etc etc) I would be in a whole heap of trouble right now. I still may be. If asked, I would say I absolutely received a brain insult from overuse. 
 

still, I reiterate that I would be remiss if I didn’t continue to update the current partial remittance of one of the worst parts of my HPPD by Delta 8.  

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Update: emotional range still increased. No diminishment in this effect. 

 

Some symptoms of hppd was exacerbated and continues to be. As of now, the symptoms are relatively stable. Mostly brain fog similar to that experienced with delta-9-thc, stress tolerance reduction, and increased anxiety in the evening after sunset. .25mg of Ativan removes majority of evening anxiety. 
 

I had an “event” where I fell asleep in a soft shell hyperbaric chamber and awoke 2 hours later with very heightened anxiety. This progressed into minor hppd hallucinations as the night went on. Later, elevated heart rate appeared that would not decrease even with sleep; mental fragility increasing—feeling like I’m “losing grip” on reality. Paraesthesia. Extremely similar in subjective experience to initial hppd onset 7 years ago.
 

Symptoms persisted until 24 hours later when, interestingly, 800% rda magnesium over 8 hours removed the majority of these symptms. Continued taking that amount daily until loose stool (sign body needs no more). This took 4 days before body met magnesium needs. I had been experiencing some symptoms of magnesium deficiency for weeks but was unaware or didn’t understand where the symptoms were coming from. I experienced almost non of the minor deficiency symptoms afaik. Just straight to severe.
 

7 days later, 1000% rda copper glycinate over 24 hours removed even more of these negative symptoms. When I would open the capsule and taste it, I could not taste the copper as normally I would have. After increasing my levels, I could taste it again and it tastes pretty gross. Pennies. 
 


How I feel about all this: still extremely elated I can feel passion and empathy as I would pre hppd. It’s a new lease on life in many ways. I’ve endured the negative symptoms before and they are nothing compared to the worst of what I have been through. If this was a trade off, then I consider it a worthy one for me personally.
 

I have found very few medications that added more to my emotions. 99 percent of the time they are removing negative emotions. I have never found a medication that improved emotions without continuing to take the medication. For me, life was intolerable before. It’s still pretty bad compared to many I would say.... but a small glass of water in the desert is still a glass of water. If I could go back in time, while I would have discontinued delta-8-thc after the first negative reaction, I still would decide to take it initially. 

Edited by Onemorestep
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On 1/12/2021 at 5:18 PM, Zaman said:

So your HPPD caused emotional blunting?

Blunting is putting it lightly... mostly I just had sympathy for others. Only the worst suffering could evoke empathy. Additionally, It was like my threshold/bar for feeling intense emotion had been severely raised. My baseline existence was the opposite of the empathogenic feeling many reported during a hallucinogenic trip. I felt very removed from humanity.
 

now.... well it’s difficult to even watch Netflix sometimes without tearing up haha. Something very interesting is experiencing emotion this way and consuming media I did pre and post this experience. When one has access to a different scope of emotion, one comes to different conclusions about the realities of the situations they are viewing....
 

.... an understanding that allows me to comprehend non partisan politics more xD

 

What I really dislike about d8 is it’s relationship to cannabis culture and hallucinogens in general. It always annoyed me when someone would come to this forum and say “I took acid again and now I feel better” (I am in no ways ever supporting that). I have no idea what happened to me. why did d8 influence me as it did? Where d9 doesn’t do that? I can only guess. 
 

certainly am grateful though. 

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