Getting to know Benzydamine

by Anonymous
benzydamine
delirium

Context

Name:
Anonymous
Trip Date:
7th of November 2020
Age:
21
Gender:
Male
Height:
5ft7
Weight:
~132lb
Setting:
At home

Substances

Name Dosage Route of Administration
Benzydamine 500mg oral

Introduction

I have not had any previous experience with this drug. I extracted a sachet of Tantum Rosa containing 500 milligrams of Benzydamine hydrochloride using isopropyl alcohol and paper filters. My dosage will be <8.3mg/kg.

Onset

Onset
00:00:

I wrap the yield of this extraction in a paper parachute. Minutes later, I’m dizzy and there’s an uncomfortable sensation in my stomach, but it could just be nervousness. Taking benzydamine on an empty stomach might’ve not been a good idea. Oops. I make a butter toast to cushion this.

The room is dimly lit by the stormy weather outside dampened by curtains, which are on the opposite side to entrance of the room. I’m besides the window at my desk. The entrance is a dark black hole, a breeding ground for hallucinations.

00:32:
  • Stomach pain has subsided.
  • Dim, mandala-shaped dark blue-colored closed eye visuals.
00:43:

As usual with deliriants, transparent visual noise overlays walls, an ever changing static that offsets the plain color of the surface below from magenta to green to blue, though the latter wasn’t as noticeable. Tiny specks surf along surfaces, limited to the proximity of their real location. They bend and twist and twitch before taking the form of scorpions and spiders and vague microscopic critters. They walk around with no apparent aim, losing their volatile legs with every step, but new ones sprout in the same moment. One faces another and I’m quite entertained to watch their little standoff. Despite having a realistic appearance, they dance in a cartoonish weightless rubbery motion, the velocity of which starts slow but quickly picks up speed until the end, when it decelerates smoothly. It’s no surprise that the starting motion of physical, real, objects must accelerate and decelerate slowly as inertia is overcome, but these hallucinations exaggerate this aspect of reality to the point of being unnaturally silly.

Some of the forms and patterns arising and subsiding in this effervescent soup of static strike me as profoundly aesthetic and intimate, alike innately understood imagery, that represents specific primary emotions and concepts that make up the building blocks of my thinking.

01:08:

I cover my eyes with the palm of my hand, waiting for CEVs. At a point, I become aware of the uncanny force at which my hand was pressing on my face. The tactile sensation on my face vastly overpowers the one that should be felt too on the palm of my hand. When body parts press against each other, we recognize both of them as our own because there’s a balance of tactility where they meet. My hand felt alien, in the sense it feels like the hand of someone else. I take the hand off and open my eyes to investigate to find myself dissociated from that hand. It gained a surprising floatiness, as if it was full of light gas. Dissociative effects such as these would continue to appear, throughout the trip, lasting no more than a minute. Distortions of proprioperception feel eerily similar to that of dextromethorphan.

Peak

Peak
01:19:

Indistinct dry sounds play in the distance for a moment and end just as I become aware of them. Some even fool me into thinking my cat had entered my room, because the noise was exactly the same as the hushed sound my cat’s nails make on contact to the hard wood floor.

Staring for a few seconds where my desk meets the wall I see a vibrant eletric pink cloud bubbling with smaller dark clouds behind a document binder, which I believed was actually there until illusion ended. The lack of static and bright colors felt of psychedelic nature.

I lay in bed on my back with a pillow over my eyes, stiff and trembling from the drug, and put on one of my favorite albums to listen to while zonked out: Ceres & Calypso in the Deep Time. Seconds later, I can see the room, dimly and in monochrome, seemingly through the pillow (so much that I checked twice if it was badly positioned), from the same perspective I’d see it laying down. Attempting to shift my gaze down from the ceiling to inspect this miniature alternate reality seemingly within my pillow would make the vision slip away. I got better at holding the illusion, with a few attempts. Furniture would sometimes switch places, for example, the dark rectangle that is my wardrobe door would become a tall shelf or vice versa. Decorative items and memorabilia on shelves, regardless of being there in reality or not, were a blur that I can only describe as rapidly rearranging cubist[1] version of themselves, an amalgam of overlapping viewpoints of themselves, of related objects and aesthetics.

[1] More specifically: https://www.tate.org.uk/art/art-terms/a/analytical-cubism

03:35:

Auditory hallucinations indistinguishable from reality revealed themselves as I attempted to meditate. I hear the jingle of a key ring, then a key turning the lock, then once all the pins of the lock have been freed the door swings open with that characteristic, the familiar sound I’ve heard hundreds of times throughout daily life. I hear muffled steps and, as usual, my cat throttling to the door to greet the visitor. This one fooled me because of how realistic and perfectly timed in sequence the sounds were. Only when I went looking for someone in other parts of the home, did I start to doubt that occurrence.

What I find the most interesting about this hallucination is that I could’ve not heard my cat run to the door, if it wasn’t a hallucination. The door is too far away from my room for me to be able to hear that. The first sounds were properly adjusted by the hallucination to fit into the current space I was in, by making the sounds muffled and convincingly distorted by the walls they have to bounce off before reaching me, but the sounds of the cat running were played as if I was close. There seems to be a break of continuity the moment I hear the cat, and that is perhaps why this hallucination didn’t progress further.

I keep failing to enter a focused meditative state on my breath for long, because I keep being distracted by sudden flashes of fuzzy psychedelic geometry, encompassing all of my vision.

Offset

Offset
03:48:

(At this point I had already experienced most of the effects this dose can provide. Not much eventful or new enough to report on occurred, hence, my notes grow sparse.)

If the duration table on the psychonautwiki is to be believed, I should be peaking, at the earliest, right now, but it seems that the peak was two hours ago, as I don’t feel as dizzy and intoxicated as before. The hallucinations continue at the same frequency and strength. Perhaps I’ve just become accustomed to the physical effects? they’re still present if I consciously look for them.

04:28:

By now I had grown bored and jaded of trying to induce novel hallucinations, and started to gather my notes into something coherent.

09:27:

Hallucinations have noticeably decreased now.

14:26:

My heart rate is fast paced and I still feel stimulated and twitchy. I doubt I’ll be able to sleep after the next couple of hours, the typical time sleep falls for me.

(Later I made a infusion of passiflora, valerian root, and other placebo herbal hypnotics. I considered that no more than 100mg of diphenhydramine would be enough knock me out, but at this time I just wanted ease off to sleep without having to worry about a possible hallucinatory synergy with the lingering effects of benzydamine.)

17h+:

Hallucinations have all but subsided by now.

I’ve tried all I could think of to fall sleep, yet failed. Every part of myself wants to doze off but racing thoughts keep me form doing so. I hear birds chirp outside announcing it’ll be morning soon, to my desperation. I had been wide-awake in bed for a handful of hours. I give up in the clearly futile effort of falling asleep, and try to pivot the residual stimulation towards tasks I had due and cleaning/housework.

Despite me being a bit loopy from not having slept after a deliriant trip, the residual stimulation carried on my day as normal, well past 24 hours since the initial administration.

I managed to sleep the next day (34 hours and 50 minutes since the initial administration of benzydamine), which I think marks the definitive end of the drug’s effects, hence, the end of this trip report, too.

Conclusion / Aftermath

This first benzydamine trip had been surprisingly lucid, as it didn’t impair me, mentally and physically, as profoundly as classical deliriants have before, for an equivalent hallucinosis. Distortions of reality touched on sinister themes, but I never got immersed in their narratives (apart from a couple of brief auditory hallucinations), hence, they held little power over my reality. I had this unwavering curiosity of what amusing situation or strange sensation would face me next, until the hallucinations ceased being novel and I became disinterested.

Mixing it with a dissociative should be interesting. Deliriants and dissociatives generally synergize well, covering up the negative effects of each other, although benzydamine is an atypical deliriant (is it the only one? what others exist that we don’t know are anticholinergics?). Cardiac effects might be a concern.

It wasn’t without adverse effects, although:

  • Hand finger tremors
  • Increased heartbeat and frequent heart palpitations, which I think could be dangerous if this effect ramps up with dose
  • Frequent urination and subsequent dehydration. I kept drinking lots of water, but that did not completely alleviate thirst and cotton mouth (although it isn’t nearly as bad as anticholinergic deliriants). It seemed to not have been absorbed or made use of by my body, as I’d urinate a concerning large volume of clear urine about one hour later after drinking a cup of water.
  • Decrease of motor coordination (most noticeable when trying to type)
  • Loose short term memory, which would derail my train of thought by making me forget what I was thinking seconds ago.
  • Unwavering insomnia. THE aspect that keeps me from doing this again so soon, I imagine it gets especially torturous after larger doses and more unpleasant trips than mine. If you thought the trip itself made you feel paranoid, wait until you haven’t slept 24 hours after the fact.

Overall, an interesting experience that I’m excited to explore further in the future. Also, benzydamine trip reports typically mention the substance’s unique tracers, I’m disappointed I didn’t get any.