Psychedelic substances are becoming increasingly popular in treating trauma, as they open the mind of the patient to more effective treatment. Psychedelic therapy can bring about dramatic change — an amazing feat.
Commonly used psychedelic for trauma are:
MDMA reduces the fear response to anxiety-provoking stimuli, which includes trauma and traumatic memories. It also enhances introspection and interpersonal trust, helping the patient talk to their therapist in a psychotherapy session. In a controlled, small dose, MDMA has a small effect on the patient’s consciousness, meaning they retain a clear memory of their sessions.
Psilocybin, LSD, and DMT (Classical Psychedelics), recent studies suggest that the effects of these psychedelics can help treat PTSD. They facilitate fear extinction — which is when a certain trigger no longer invokes fear or anxiety — in animal studies. They also affect the amygdala, which may lead to patients having an easier time processing traumatic memories.
Patients affected by the psychedelic drug are better able to talk through their trauma and benefit from their integration sessions. Cases have shown that the benefits are long-term. They do not wear off in the months after treatment.
Patients can heal from the effects of their trauma without the assault of fear, shame, guilt, and self-recrimination. In their altered headspace, they can better deal with what happened, and leveraging that time to talk to a therapist helps them heal.