Toggle High
Contrast On
Categories
Body icon
Body
We celebrate all shapes and sizes because we see nothing but beauty.
View Topic
Life icon
Life
GR8NESS isn’t something you do; it’s how you live.
View Topic
Mind icon
Mind
Infuse mindfulness and awareness into everything you do.
View Topic
Self Care icon
Self Care
Refresh, renew, and reconnect with your inner self to nurture your wellbeing.
View Topic
Soul icon
Soul
Connect with all of humanity and discover your true self.
View Topic
Body
We celebrate all shapes and sizes because we see nothing but beauty.
View More
Categories
A life in motion is a life well lived. Move. Discover. Grow.
View Topic
True health lies in finding the perfect balance of mind, body, and spirit.
View Topic
Chronic pain can be debilitating. Regain control of your body and mind.
View Topic
Remedies sourced from nature help heal pains, both seen and unseen.
View Topic
Feed your body properly and you’ll nurture more than just the physical.
View Topic
Life
GR8NESS isn’t something you do; it’s how you live.
View More
Categories
Ease the way you move through life with simplicity and intelligence.
View Topic
Strengthening your relationships helps you celebrate who you’ve become.
View Topic
Raising children is the job of a lifetime. And you never get to retire.
View Topic
Our planet is a marvelous gift. Become the change the world needs by helping it heal.
View Topic
They’re an extended part of your family. Care for them the way they deserve.
View Topic
Mind
Infuse mindfulness and awareness into everything you do.
View More
Categories
While you cannot escape the stresses of life, you can find shelter inside yourself.
View Topic
Calming anxiety, easing depression, and discovering peace of mind are within your grasp.
View Topic
Everyday tools, training, and techniques to convince your brain it can be so much more.
View Topic
From mantras for self-love to changing the way you look at wellness.
View Topic
category alt tag
Self Care
Refresh, renew, and reconnect with your inner self to nurture your wellbeing.
View More
Categories
The journey of self-discovery is never-ending. Embrace your journey.
View Topic
Feeling good about your outside impacts how you feel about your inside. Feel beautiful both ways.
View Topic
Soul
Connect with all of humanity and discover your true self.
View More
Categories
Dive into your practice and experience something new every day. Give your mind some space to grow.
View Topic
Feed your mind with powerful positive statements to help you believe in yourself.
View Topic
In a fast-paced world, sometimes the best thing you can do is to breathe.
View Topic
GR8NESS expert Expert Reviewed
Image by Daniel Patrick Martin / Shutterstock
275 Views
4 Min Read Time
3 Shares

Mental Health Professionals Are Using Psychedelic Drugs in Treatments

GR8NESS RATING
6
gr8 vote
GR8
0
meh vote
MEH
1
pass vote
PASS

Innovations in the mental health space seem to be shifting with societal changes. As society continues to evolve, stigmas are disappearing, and how we study and treat the mind adopts these changes. Today, mental health is more of a conversation than ever before. People are becoming more conscious of their mental health, including groups like the general male population.

While the fight to reinforce mental health as an important factor for everyone is far from over, inclusivity and open-mindedness in the mental health arena have led to some surprising results. One of these is the use of highly taboo substances like psychedelics to treat mental illness and mental health conditions. Two conditions that we can observe this with are depression and anxiety.

Depression and Anxiety

Depression and anxiety go hand in hand, though a person may have either of them, respectively. According to the CDC, depression relates to feelings of sadness experienced for an extended amount of time or interfere with everyday life and function. Causes of depression may vary widely but extend from genetic predisposition to it, stressful or traumatic life events, medical problems, or as a result of using drugs or alcohol.

On the other hand, anxiety is a persistent feeling of worry or fear that interferes with one’s daily activities. Anxiety expresses itself as several disorders, which include generalized anxiety disorder, social anxiety, phobias, panic disorders, obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD), and post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD).

How They Relate to Psychedelics

Brain functions or activity in the neural circuits impact these types of disorders. Besides antidepressants and therapy, other alternatives, such as brain training, look promising. The approach, however, focuses on manipulating how the brain works in some capacity. This is how using mind-altering drugs to treat such disorders has come to be.

Psychedelic drugs such as psilocybin saw popularization in the United States around the 1960s. Once legal, they eventually became regarded as a taboo. Though cultures around the world use them as natural remedies, their place in mainstream culture, particularly medicine, remains unclear. However, efforts to bring these sorts of drugs to the forefront are happening.

Psilocybin for Treatment

Psilocybin is a naturally occurring psychedelic produced by more than 200 mushroom species from regions such as Europe, South America, Mexico, and the United States. The substance is hallucinogenic, and generally known as “magic mushrooms.” The effects can be both psychological and physical.

Scientific Studies

One study conducted by Johns Hopkins University examined the effects of dosing individuals that are suffering from life-threatening cancer for their anxiety related to the illness. The findings show that patients saw a decrease in depression and anxiety, many of which were after one single dose.

Another study investigated the use of psilocybin for depression when all other avenues of treatment had previously failed. Also known as treatment-resistant patients. There was a decrease in symptoms of depression after five weeks. Though the study was small, each patient tolerated the drug with ease. Further analysis of brain activity highlighted alterations in the area of the brain responsible for processing fear and stress.

Are Psychedelic Drugs Safe?

An interview with Roland Griffiths, the lead researcher for John Hopkin’s research on psilocybin, provided some information on what to make about the outcomes of the study. According to Griffiths, hallucinogens with no mind-altering effects are 100% safe.

However, he stated that the risk-management is possible if done in an appropriate clinical setting. When compared against alcohol, hallucinogens, such as psilocybin, are not physically toxic, making them already safer than other legal substances.

The drug causes a significant alteration of consciousness and therefore has the potential to negatively impact those with susceptibility to brain disorders such as schizophrenia. Recreational use of these drugs without medical supervision is one of the biggest risks. If not handled carefully, they have the potential to cause a user intense psychological trauma.

How Are They Used?

A mental healthcare professional may recommend psilocybin therapy, especially for treatment-resistant patients. Therapy involves the dosage of the drug under the supervision of a clinical therapist, followed by working through the sensations or alterations experienced.

This may be an intense experience but has worked for many as a breakthrough for behavioral and psychological adversities. Other drugs being used in this arena are LSD, cannabis, MDMA (Ecstasy/Molly), and ketamine. While each varies in risk and plausibility, they are used similarly in clinical settings to manage other psychological problems associated with depression and anxiety, such as PTSD and addiction.

GR8NESS RATING
6
gr8 vote
GR8
0
meh vote
MEH
1
pass vote
PASS
Amanda
GR8NESS Writer
Amanda is a GR8NESS contributing writer who lives in celebration of self care, and endeavors to approach all things with a student mentality. Her love for the study of self-development is rooted in fitness, holistic wellness, and skin care. She is an advocate for mental health; and hopes to connect others to their own way of daring to care.
Learn More
Related Articles
GR8NESS expert Expert Reviewed
Image by Charles Deluvio / Shutterstock

How Working from Home Affects Your Mental Health

Working from home affects each person differently. As the world climate changes more individuals are working remotely than ever before, some without knowing when they'll be back in the office. Major companies including Twitter, Facebook, Square, and Google state that employees can remain working remotely indefinitely, or at least for...
GR8NESS expert Expert Reviewed
Image by GaudiLab / Shutterstock

Coping with Post-Lockdown Anxiety

When the COVID-19 pandemic hit, we were forced into confinement like never before–carving out workspaces in our bedrooms or living rooms, homeschooling our children, and socially distancing from pretty much everyone. At that time, we were feeling confused and anxious about the "new normal," what it meant, how it was...
GR8NESS expert Expert Reviewed
Image by Goran Petric / Shutterstock

Turning Off the News May Benefit Your Mental Health

I've always considered myself a very in-the-know type of person. Every morning I wake up, check my e-mails, my social media feeds, and then I check out what the major news outlets are saying. I even have a paid subscription to several online newspapers. Six months ago I would have...
GR8NESS expert Expert Reviewed
Image by fizkes / Shutterstock

Mental Health Resources to Help Get Through 2020

2020 is a year that is full of change like we have never seen before, and with such significant change you may find yourself in sudden need of mental health resources. Even if you have never struggled before. Many individuals find themselves overwhelmed with the events unfolding around us. It's...
The URL has been copied