The Benefits of Psilocybin on Mental Health

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Natural Medicines including Psychedelic Mushrooms have been making the news lately for the benefits being found by people suffering from a myriad of mental health issues. The most studied compound in these mushrooms, psilocybin, is converted within the digestive system into Psilocin which is the active compound with psychedelic properties that has been shown in clinical studies to help people suffering from PTSD, anxiety and depression. In Colorado the study and use of recently legalized natural medicines is rapidly advancing our understanding of psilocybin as a recognized treatment option for people suffering from these and other disorders.

Here are three ways psilocybin is helping people suffering from mental health issues.

Depression

Depression is one of the most debilitating mental health issues affecting people in the United States. This issue affects millions in many ways and unfortunately leads to high rates of suicide. Traditional treatments for depression often include pharmaceutical medication and psychotherapy, but these treatments do not work for everyone. Many studies highlight the benefits of Natural Medicines, including mushrooms containing Psilocybin, which, when administered in a clinical setting, have shown promise in helping individuals battling depression.

A study by John Hopkins University shows that psilocybin helps produce long lasting improvements for those suffering from depression. This study showed patients with extreme depression problems experienced a significant reduction in depression symptoms after only two sessions of psilocybin therapy. The effects were immediate and lasted for weeks. The study suggests that psilocybin can lead to changes in the way the brain processes depressive symptoms and can help regulate moods.

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Psilocybin, in these studies, is believed to help in the way the brain connects emotions and memories, and potentially improve neuroplasticity which is the ability of neural networks in the brain to change, grow and reorganize. Psilocybin is believed to create a “reset” so to speak of neural circuits in the brain which seems to help people suffering from depression to break away from intrusive, repetitive, negative thoughts that bombard them. This neural rewiring can help people gain new ways of processing past trauma, or difficult situations and create new ways of thinking through these issues, while also providing a sense of well-being.

Anxiety

Many people suffer from anxiety disorders. Historically, treatment for these disorders include cognitive behavioral therapy and pharmaceutical medications. However, many patients do not respond to these treatments.

Research shows that in some cases psilocybin can significantly reduce anxiety and can be particularly helpful for those facing end of life issues. A study by the Journal of Psychopharmacology showed that terminal cancer patients treated with psilocybin experienced decreased anxiety and feelings of depression, with the effect of this lasting up to almost six months after treatment.

Doctors believe the anxiolytic (reduction of anxiety) effects of psilocybin come from its ability to enhance the body’s emotional processing and create feelings of interconnectedness and acceptance. During a psilocybin experience, many patients gain a deeper understanding of their situation and their emotions. These experiences can be truly eye opening and for many this leads to improving the person’s quality of life.

Post Traumatic Stress Disorder

PTSD is another disorder that has had promising results from psilocybin treatments. PTSD symptoms include flashbacks to traumatic experiences, intrusive thoughts, and extreme anxiety. Traditional treatments for PTSD usually include extensive therapy and again pharmaceutical medication, which can be effective in addressing symptoms but often these benefits are short lived.

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In clinical trials psilocybin therapy has benefited many individuals suffering from PTSD. In these controlled trials therapists guide patients through the psilocybin experience to help them understand and learn to cope with their issues. The psychedelic experience helps people suffering from these conditions to process their trauma and their emotions in a new way leading to reduced symptoms of PTSD.

One key benefit of psilocybin treatment for those suffering from PTSD is the newfound ability of these patients to be able to express their emotions afterwards. This leads to more productive therapy sessions where the person can speak about trauma in a healthy way, without reliving it.

The benefits of psilocybin for mental health conditions like anxiety, PTSD and depression is becoming more evident as more clinical studies are performed. Natural medicines, including psilocybin add a new, and interesting approach for therapists and doctors to use to help people work toward understanding the causes of their PTSD, anxiety or depression, rather than simply treating the symptoms.

Author
Frank Horwich

Frank Horwich is the Founder of Psychedelic Standards Organization. Horwich founded Psychedelic Standards Organization in 2021. Previously Horwich enjoyed a career as an IT and Operations executive in the natural medicine industry.

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