Recreational doses of PCP occasionally appear to induce a psychotic state that resembles schizophrenia. Furthermore, users report feeling detached from reality. Lower doses produce a numbness in the fingers, hands and feet. While similar effects also include shallow breathing, flushing, profuse sweating, and poor muscular coordination. Finally, loss of balance or staggering is common.
At high doses, PCP can cause hallucinations as well as seizures, coma, and death. While similar effects that can occur at high doses are nausea, vomiting, blurred vision, flicking up and down of the eyes, drooling, loss of balance, and dizziness. In addition, high doses of PCP can also cause effects similar to symptoms of schizophrenia, such as delusions, paranoia, disordered thinking, and catatonia. Leading to speech often being sparse and garbled. Finally, a hallmark of the drug’s effect is loss of one’s sense of self or a complete self-centeredness as with psychedelic drugs such as LSD.
Use of PCP among adolescents may interfere with hormones related to normal growth and development as well as with the learning process.
PCP can alter mood states in an unexpected or unpredictable fashion, as can other mood-altering drugs. It may induce feelings of invulnerability, leading to many stories of users becoming violent and seeming to possess superhuman strength. However, researchers find these to be extremely rare occurrences.
Some individuals can become detached and appear paranoid while others exhibit euphoria and may become agitated and very animated. Above all, PCP is a drug with unpredictable effects.
PCP is addicting; for instance, using it often leads to psychological dependence, craving, and compulsive PCP-seeking behavior. People who use PCP for long periods of time report memory loss, difficulties with speech and thinking, depression, and, finally, weight loss. In addition, these symptoms can persist up to a year after halting usage, and mood disorders have also been reported.