Will Psychedelic Therapy Be the Next Breakthrough in Mental Health and Addiction Treatment?

What Is Psychedelic Therapy?

Recently, there has been an indication that the U.S. government is moving toward legalizing psychedelic drugs as designated breakthrough therapies for post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) and depression and anxiety. In the 1950s, research was conducted into psychedelic-assisted psychotherapy for many health issues, including addiction, and was widely researched. However, when drugs like MDMA, LSD, and psilocybin were made illegal in the 60s, the research ended until a few years ago. Now research into the benefits of psychedelics is having a sort of renaissance.

Psychedelic Assisted therapy uses plants and compounds with hallucinogenic drug effects to treat mental illness and psychiatric disorders, such as depression and post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD). Some of the compounds include lysergic acid diethylamide (LSD), psilocybin (“magic mushrooms”), mescaline (peyote), ketamine, and MDMA. Emerging research suggests that psychedelics and psychedelic mushrooms like the ones mentioned may help some people with some mental illness symptoms, especially when other treatment methods for depression and anxiety have failed. While Indigenous communities worldwide have used psychedelics in therapeutic and religious settings for hundreds of years, psychedelic-assisted therapy is relatively new in the Western world, but it’s starting to emerge.

If you or a loved one are struggling with addiction, call WhiteSands Alcohol and Drug Rehab today at (877) 640-7820 to learn how we can help.

How Psychedelics Are Being Used to Treat Mental Health and Addiction

Psychedelic Assisted psychotherapy could potentially help treat mental health conditions like anxiety and depression, drug and alcohol use disorder, and post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD). Current medications for psychiatric disorders often take several weeks to work and only work as long as the person takes them. Research on psychedelic-assisted psychotherapy shows that participants found immediate improvement, often with just a single dose. Researchers do not know precisely how or why psychedelic therapy works for these psychiatric disorders. Some theories on how psychedelic-assisted therapy works include:

  • Increased suggestibility: the psychedelic compound may make people more suggestible, which can make them more responsive to suggestions from a therapist
  • Changes in neurotransmitters: psychedelic drugs may act on neurotransmitters in the brain that can change behavior and improve mood.
  • Psychedelic or mystical experiences: the person may shift their mindset or belief system from an intensely personal meaning and spiritual experience, causing them to think or behave differently

Is Psychedelic Therapy Legal?

While the drugs used in psychedelic therapy remain illegal, the FDA allows their use in research and treatment for life-threatening cancer and terminal illnesses. There is growing evidence that the effects of psychedelics operate differently in the brain than addictive drugs, and many advocates are calling for their legalization. Some states have started legalizing some of these psychedelic drugs, including Oregon, which became the first U.S. state to legalize psilocybin, the psychoactive compound in “magic mushrooms.’ However, on the federal level, LSD and psilocybin remain Schedule 1 drugs and are completely prohibited.

Learn about the available poisons in the home that people may be abusing to deal with mental issues here:

Deadly Easily Available Poison in Home

Ketamine Psychedelic Therapy at WhiteSands

Ketamine is the most-studied psychedelic compound for psychiatric disorders therapy. For those with major depression, research suggests a significant improvement after ketamine treatment, even after just a single dose, with results lasting about six to eight weeks. WhiteSands Alcohol and Drug Rehab in Tampa, FL is now offering Ketamine therapy for treatment-resistant depression. Ketamine infusion therapy has shown rapid antidepressant effects when other standard treatments don’t work. 

Ketamine therapy is through an IV drip, lasting about 45 minutes and takes place in a safe, controlled environment. A registered nurse monitors patients an hour or so after their treatment is complete to ensure they respond well to the IV without any adverse effects. Clients who were given ketamine treatment reported a significant decrease in their symptoms. Ketamine infusion therapy lasts between six to eight treatments, but even a single infusion can ease symptoms. Other disorders ketamine infusions help include:

  • Bipolar disorder
  • Mood disorders
  • Post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD)
  • Decreases suicidal ideation
  • Drug and alcohol addiction

If you have not had much success with conventional treatment for your depressive disorder, please give us a call at WhiteSands Alcohol and Drug Rehab today. Our team is available to discuss ketamine treatment with you and answer any questions you may have.

If you or a loved one needs help with abuse and/or treatment, please call the WhiteSands Treatment at (877) 855-3470. Our addiction specialists can assess your recovery needs and help you get the addiction treatment that provides the best chance for your long-term recovery.

About the Author

Jackie has been involved in the substance abuse and addiction treatment sector for over five years and this is something that she is truly eager about. She has a passion for writing and continuously works to create informative pieces that not only educate and inform the public about the disease of addiction but also provide solutions for those who struggle with drug and alcohol abuse.