LSD is considered one of the least toxic drugs used non-medically. Recent results from epidemiological studies have shown lower rates of mental health disorders and suicide among people who have used psychedelics like LSD.
However, there have been cases of adverse psychological reactions to LSD leading to both successful and unsuccessful suicide attempts. Beginning in the 1960’s and continuing today, sensationalized media coverage of LSD-related deaths inaccurately portray adverse reactions as increasing suicidal behavior or accidental death due to loss of control. Many of the stories reported misattributed the role of LSD in the situation, or in some cases didn’t involve LSD at all.
The risks from LSD are dependent on set and setting and differ from other types of drugs, including alcohol, benzodiazepines, and opiates, which produce relatively predictable physical and psychological effects. The consequences of negative or challenging experiences can be minimized by education and awareness of LSD’s effects, with particular attention paid to issues around set and setting prior to the experience.