Today, much of the world is focused on marijuana and opioids. However, one class of drugs that has existed quietly in the background for decades may finally get its moment in the spotlight.
Psychedelic drugs such as LSD and magic mushrooms are the go to choice for hippies and attendees of Coachella. Yet a new article by the Canadian Medical Association Journal argues that these very drugs may have profound medical potential.
The researchers worked with people suffering from a number of mental disorders including addiction, depression, and PTSD. They observed a marked therapeutic effect when patients received these illegal substances.
MDMA or ecstasy is being used to help those with PTSD. Psilocybin or mushrooms are being used to reduce addiction and end-of-life anxiety. LSD and peyote are being used to treat a whole host of anxieties.
The new research at the University of British Columbia is on a rather small scale. Yet the study’s authors are confident that great results could come from expanding the program.
Such theories are not new. Hospitals and government have experimented with the potential benefits of psychedelics since the 1950s. However, much of this work was abandoned with the emergence of the War on Drugs.
Even though the researchers have seen some success, there is no way of knowing that administrating powerful psychedelics to potentially unstable patients could result in violence or self-harm.
“There’s hurdles that we face in terms of being able to do this type of research…it’s trying to break the taboo and be able to talk about these molecules and the need for this research and trying to encourage science funders to look at these dramatic signals that are coming out of the recently conducted research,” said study author Dr. Evan Wood.
The stated aims of the paper is to convince policy makers that this as of yet unexplored area of research could be invaluable.