If you have drug-induced Depersonalization, read this NOW
What to do if you have developed Depersonalization from drugs
Drug-induced depersonalization (DPD) is very common, and as stronger strains of weed become more popular, it's becoming incredibly frequent.
The most common situation is that you have had an intense / bad experience on weed, LSD, ketamine etc and that you can't seem to be able to 'come down'. You feel like you're still tripping / high and you can't seem to shake the feeling.
You feel like you are cut off from reality, that there's a window between you and the world. Perhaps you feel distortions in time and space; that you or the people around you aren't real -- these are just some of the symptoms of depersonalization.
It can be sudden and intensely frightening -- but just by understanding and doing a few simple things you can immediately start to feel better and ensure that it doesn't turn into a long-term condition.
1. DON'T PANIC
You will feel a strong urge to panic, but don't worry. You're not going crazy. What is happening feels alien and frightening, but you need to understand that it's actually a defence mechanism of the brain. It's perfectly natural. Most importantly, it's not permanent. It will not hurt you, it won't lead to anything worse and it is 100% temporary.
2. WHAT YOU ARE FEELING IS NOT THE DRUG
This is very important: If you have allowed enough time for the drug to wear off and you're still feeling 'high' or 'unreal' -- It's not the drug that's causing this feeling. There are no persistent traces of the drug in your system, nor has the drug caused some permanent change in your perceptions. Those things cannot and have not happened. You are ok, you are safe. What you are experiencing is a temporary reaction to stress. For the moment it may not be going away but it is NOT permanent and it's important for now that you stay as calm as possible.
3. DON'T TAKE MORE OF THE DRUG
You might think that the drug has got you into this, so it might get you out. It won't. If anything, it could make it worse. You don't need to take drastic measures to recover from this.
4. DON'T DRINK COFFEE OR OTHER SOURCES OF CAFFEINE
The feeling of 'unreality' can often be confused with a general wooziness or need to "wake up", and people sometime drink lots of coffee or other stimulants in order to shake the feeling. This will not work. It will only raise your anxiety levels higher and make you feel worse. If you want to drink a beverage, make it something relaxing like chamomile tea.
5. DON'T RESEARCH THE CONDITION
What you are feeling is completely unfamiliar and you will feel the need to dive into Google and start finding out everything you can about DP in all its forms, including drug-induced depersonalization. Do not do this! What you are experiencing is nothing more than a temporary habit of thought, but what is guaranteed to prolong it is to feed it information. If you start looking at forums and articles, you are unconsciously cementing the idea that there is supposed to be something serious wrong with you and it will take much longer to recover. Not only that but you are bound to come across frightening information that will only upset you, intensify the DPD and make you feel worse. Take it from me, someone who had the condition for over two years: this condition thrives on research and you need to starve it of just that.
If you have already been researching the condition, stop NOW and read this.
6. DISTRACT YOURSELF IMMEDIATELY
Play a video game. Play an instrument. Do something that engages you. You will still feel the depersonalization, but the important thing is that as soon as possible you break the chain of association in your mind that goes from anxiety to depersonalization to panic. You do this by staying distracted.
7. DON'T ATTEMPT TO GET BETTER RIGHT AWAY
The feeling you have is your body's reaction to anxiety. It sounds counter-intuitive now but you must allow it to dissipate naturally -- which it will do. If you become frightened and panicked that it's not going away, that will raise you anxiety levels and make the feeling worse. The best thing you can do is accept that it's there temporarily and go about your day as if nothing was wrong. The chances are that the feeling will stay with you for a time, but right now the MOST important thing is what you do with it. Remember, you are safe. This isn't going to get worse or turn into something else.
8. DEPERSONALIZATION IS ALWAYS THE SAME
People experience this condition all the time and it's EXTREMELY common. Most people experience it for a few minutes at a time, ignore it and it goes away naturally. People experience it from drug use, trauma, car crashes, panic attacks etc. But even though it can have any number of causes, here's the important thing -- It's always the same. If you have drug-induced depersonalization, it's the exact same as DP that you might have developed in a car crash. Drug-induced depersonalization is not special and it can be dealt with in the exact same way.
9. DON'T FEEL GUILTY
This is NOT YOUR FAULT. You didn't cause this to happen. Don't get hung up on whether it was that one last snort or drag that did it. Yes, the drug exacerbates it but it's an anxiety-based condition so the chances are that it would have manifested in some other way eventually. You haven't 'changed' or 'fried your brain' or any other nonsense like that. Again -- this is NOT YOUR FAULT.
Remember, you are safe. This is a temporary feeling. It isn't going to get worse or lead to anything else. There has been no permanent damage done. You are safe and sound. Yes, there's still necessary steps to recover completely, but you are not in any danger and there is nothing to be afraid of.