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Ayahuasca Addiction Treatment

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Not everything that is “natural” is safe, especially when it comes to mind-altering substances. Ayahuasca addiction treatment has become popular as an alternative (or addition) to traditional substance abuse treatment programs, but turning to this psychoactive substance as an addiction “cure” may be opening the door to more problems.

Vertava Health Ohio wants patients needing addiction treatment to get the comprehensive, evidence-based therapies they need for a healthy life. Call Vertava Health Ohio at 850.374.5331 today for more information.

What Is Ayahuasca?

A woman discussing her Ayahuasca addictionAyahuasca (eye-ah-wah-ska) is a plant that is indigenous to the Amazon basin. Cultures in that region have used Ayahuasca as a medicinal and spiritual substance for at least 1,000 years.

Leaves and stems of the ayahuasca vine are boiled to make a strong-tasting tea. Leaves from the chacruna shrub and/or the Diplopterys cabrerana plant may also be added to the mixture.

The result is a psychoactive drug that stimulates the brain’s serotonin receptors. Ayahuasca enhances emotions and boosts mood within a few minutes after ingesting it. It creates a dream-like state that can last four to six hours.

Each person’s experience with the substance is different, but some of the effects include:

  • Keen sense of self-awareness
  • Anxiety
  • Hallucinations
  • Feeling connected and unified with all things
  • Panic, fear
  • Nausea
  • Vomiting
  • Increased heart rate and blood pressure
  • Increased body temperature
  • Diarrhea

A person’s size, weight, general health, experience with psychoactive drugs, and natural variances in the plant’s potency all affect how an individual will react to ayahuasca.

How Does Ayahuasca Addiction Treatment Work?

Ayahuasca and the traditional healing ceremonies that accompany drinking ayahuasca tea are credited with curing all types of ailments, including anxiety, depression, and addiction. Ayahuasca advocates say the substance is especially effective for those who are addicted to cocaine, heroin, and alcohol.

Psychedelic therapy is a science-based approach to wellness that combines the use of psychoactive drugs like ayahuasca with talk therapy. Some experts believe that ayahuasca’s ability to alter negative thought patterns can offer an important healing element for people with addiction disorders.

The goal of ayahuasca addiction treatment is to relieve individuals of the psychological and emotional burdens that have caused them to rely on drugs or alcohol. While there are no known dangerous side effects, and most experts consider the risk of ayahuasca addiction to be low, there are still dangers involved with using this substance.

The long-term effects of ayahuasca use are still being studied, and the use of other hallucinogens is known to cause hallucinogen-persisting perception disorder (HPPD). HPPD causes random visual hallucinations to continue long after a psychedelic drug has been ingested.

Placebo-controlled trials reviewed by the National Institutes of Health (NIH) suggest ayahuasca is safe when used in specific, controlled concentrations. However, it is difficult to know whether administrating agencies or individuals are maintaining those dosages.

Additionally, natural variances in the potency of the plant and the brewing process can make some doses much stronger than others.

The same NIH report warns of the dangers of mixing ayahuasca with other medications. Dangerous drug interactions could occur with the use of:

  • Some antidepressants
  • Certain natural supplements, such as St. John’s Wort
  • Alcohol
  • Other psychoactive drugs

Even some foods could interact with ayahuasca, putting individuals at risk for a hypertensive crisis.

Find Experienced Addiction Treatment at Vertava Health Ohio

There is still a lot to learn about using ayahuasca and other psychoactive substances for treating substance and alcohol use disorders. Until more studies are done to confirm the efficacy and safety of ayahuasca addiction treatment, relying on evidence-based treatments is recommended.

Contact Vertava Health Ohio at 850.374.5331 for more information about our treatment methods and our addiction treatment programs.