What Is Psilocybin? The Future Of Mental Health Treatment In Australia

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What Is Psilocybin? The Future Of Mental Health Treatment In Australia

As the world goes crazy for the magic mushroom trend to treat mental health disorders, more people will want to know WTF it actually is. The good news is, Australia will be one of the first countries to legalise it. Way to go us.

Psilocybin is a naturally occurring psychedelic compound found in certain species of mushrooms, often referred to as “magic mushrooms” or “shrooms.” It belongs to a class of compounds known as tryptamines and is chemically similar to serotonin, a neurotransmitter that plays a role in mood regulation.

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When ingested, psilocybin is metabolised by the body into psilocin, which interacts with serotonin receptors in the brain, particularly the 5-HT2A receptors. This interaction leads to altered perception, sensory experiences, and changes in thinking, mood, and consciousness. These effects can vary significantly depending on factors such as dosage, individual brain chemistry, set and setting (the mindset and physical environment in which the substance is consumed), and personal expectations.

Psilocybin has a long history of use in various cultures for spiritual and ceremonial purposes. In recent years, there has been growing interest in its potential therapeutic applications, particularly in the field of mental health. Research suggests that psilocybin-assisted therapy may be effective in treating conditions such as depression, anxiety, addiction, and post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD).

It’s important to note that psilocybin is classified as a Schedule I substance in many countries, meaning it is illegal to possess, cultivate, or distribute.

How is psilocybin used to treat mental health disorders?

Psilocybin is being investigated as a potential treatment for various mental health disorders, and research suggests that it may have therapeutic benefits when used in a controlled and supervised setting. The use of psilocybin in therapy typically involves a guided psychedelic experience with trained professionals, often referred to as psilocybin-assisted therapy.

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During a psilocybin-assisted therapy session, the individual is given a controlled dose of psilocybin in a supportive environment, such as a therapist’s office or a specialised clinic. The therapy session is carefully planned and structured, with the presence of trained therapists or facilitators who provide support and guidance throughout the experience.

Psilocybin’s effects on perception, cognition, and emotions can potentially help individuals gain new perspectives, process emotions, and explore their thoughts and feelings in a unique way. The altered state of consciousness induced by psilocybin can lead to experiences of introspection, increased emotional openness, and a sense of interconnectedness. These experiences may be valuable for individuals struggling with conditions such as depression, anxiety, addiction, or PTSD.

It’s important to note that psilocybin-assisted therapy is still an area of active research and is not yet widely available as a standardised treatment. Clinical trials are underway to understand better its safety, efficacy, optimal dosing, and potential therapeutic protocols. The use of psilocybin should always be done under the guidance of trained professionals in a controlled and legal setting.

If you are interested in exploring psilocybin-assisted therapy, it is advisable to stay updated with the latest scientific research, consult with mental health professionals, and consider participating in clinical trials or studies investigating its therapeutic potential.

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Where can you buy psilocybin?

The sale and purchase of psilocybin mushrooms or psilocybin-containing products is illegal in many countries, including Australia, the United States and most of Europe (except the Netherlands). Psilocybin is classified as a controlled substance, meaning it is considered to have a high potential for abuse and no recognised medical use. In truth, it’s not.

Want to know more about psilocybin? Try watching the How To Change Your Mind documentary on Netlfix.

Thankfully this is changing and within the next year, it should be legal in more countries, Australia being one of them.