If you're considering using psychedelics, it's vital to education yourself on responsible use, especially if you have a pre-existing mental health problem or a predisposition to mental health problems (such as close relatives with anxiety, depression, psychosis or schizophrenia). As a minimum we recommended reading:
- How to Use Psychedelics' guide on the safe use of psychedelics
- PsychonautWiki's page on responsible use
- The DrugScience pages on LSD and psilocybin
- Detailed information on the substance under consideration
You may also benefit from checking out:
- The chapter on psychedelic safety from The Essential Psychedelic Guide
- Erowid's Fundamentals of Responsible Psychoactive Use
- The everything2 Responsible Drug User's Oath
- Investigate the health risks and dangers of the specific psychoactive and of the class of drugs to which it belongs.
- Learn about interactions and contraindications with other recreational drugs, medications, supplements, and activities.
- Review individual health concerns, predispositions, and family health history.
- Be aware of relevant laws and penalties.
- Choose a source or product carefully to help ensure correct identification and purity. (Try to avoid materials with an unknown source or of unknown quality.)
- Know whether the drug is likely to impair the ability to drive, operate equipment, or pay attention to necessary tasks.
- Take oneself "off duty" from responsibilities that might be interfered with (job, child care, etc.), and arrange for someone else to be "on duty".
- Anticipate reasonably foreseeable risks to oneself and others, and employ safeguards to minimize those risks.
- Choose an appropriate occasion and location for use.
- Decide how much to use and measure dosages carefully.
- Begin with a low dose until individual reactions are known and thereafter use the minimum dose necessary to achieve the desired effects: lower doses are safer doses.
- Reflect on and adjust use to minimize physical and mental health problems.
- Note changes in health over time that may be related to use.
- Modify use if it interferes with work or personal goals.
- Check in with peers and family, and accept feedback about one's use.
- Track reactions to specific drugs and dosages in order to avoid repeating mistakes.
- Seek treatment if needed.
- Decide not to use if the time isn't right, the material is suspect, or the situation is otherwise problematic.