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LSD cures Alcoholism?

LSD Trip Visualized : Source http://bit.ly/xixUvT 
I have never taken LSD but I have studied the War on Drugs for 11 years and came across a number of interesting articles about the use of psychedelic drugs in the treatment of mental disorders of the obsessive compulsive spectrum and those related to traumatic experiences such as PTSD. New meta-review scientific research has shown that a single LSD trip can be as effective as conventional alcoholism treatment programs. Click read more to learn more about this subject.... 

According to Teri Krebs and Pål-Ørjan Johansen at the Norwegian University of Science and Technology in Trondheim, a single LSD trip can help an alcoholic overcome alcoholism.  They looked at six studies that had investigated the use of LSD for treating alcoholism - all of which were carried out between 1966 and 1970, unsurprisingly. This research was abandoned because of political problems associated with the counter culture movement in the 1960's and 70's. 
Of 536 alcoholic participants,  325 of them were given a single dose of LSD. The success of the therapy was measured by how long the individuals were able to abstain from alcohol, as well as by their social adjustment to a life of alcohol abstinence.

They found that  %60 of the LSD treatment groups had improved before their first follow-up session, compared with %38 in the placebo groups. The also found that the LSD groups were still doing better than the placebo group six months later. 

"The effectiveness of a single dose of LSD compares well with the effectiveness of daily naltrexone, acamprosate or disulfiram... three commonly prescribed, approved medications for reducing relapse in alcohol dependence."
"It was rather common for patients to claim significant insights into their problems, to feel that they had been given a new lease on life, and to make a strong resolution to discontinue their drinking." 
"Psychedelics probably work in addiction by making the brain function more chaotically for a period - a bit like shaking up a snow globe - weakening reinforced brain connections and dynamics." 
"Curing alcohol dependency requires huge changes in the way you see yourself. That's what LSD does. Overall there is a big effect... this is probably as good as anything we've got [for treating alcoholism]." 

Take a look at the source/ original articles:

Source : http://www.newscientist.com/blogs/shortsharpscience/2012/03/lsd-as-effective-as-standard-t.html
via: http://jop.sagepub.com/content/early/2012/03/08/0269881112439253.abstract




***Update : May 2012***

This posting is the most popular one on my blog: so I will now explain the mechanism by which psychedelic drugs administered in a medical setting, help to address addictive behavioral patterns like alcohol addiction.

When a person ingests a psychedelic drug (psychoactive substances that cause dramatic changes in emotional, perceptual and cognitive functioning), the brains chemistry and information routing is altered for the duration of the drugs effect. Powerful psychoactive drugs like LSD cause such dramatic changes in the brains information processing, that they can create functional plasticity and structural bio-chemical changes in the brain of the user. This property of strong psychedelic drugs to (re-arrange the mind) underscores both their power as medical tools and also their unpredictable danger when used in a recreational context.

A powerful psychedelic drug experience (known as a "trip" by users), has the capability of totally changing the patients world view. Our world view and perception of the world and our place in it relies on our constantly changing memory index of ideas, social norms, thoughts, emotions and experiences.

What we believe, how we view things, the choices we make, how we view ourselves, how we think of others: all of these properties of cognition, awareness and consciousness are the result of our historical intake of information from the world through our sensory organs.

A powerful psychedelic drug has the capacity to randomly re-arrange parts of a persons memory index, such that it can radically change a persons beliefs, values and worldview. In the case of  the alcohol addict, it is this capacity to induce systemic cognitive changes that gives the LSD its power to undo/ change/ alter the underlying dysfunctional mental patterns that are driving the destructive addiction behaviors.

Most addicts have unresolved emotional, psychological, spiritual and social problems. Their addiction to food, gambling, shopping, drugs, alcohol, tv abuse or internet abuse is driven by the person unhealthy coping mechanisms. The addict is using these addictions to escape from or medicate the underlying psychological problems without addressing them. The failure of the addict to address the underlying driver of the addiction inevitably leads them to continue abusing the substance or subjects of their addiction.

LSD and other powerful mind altering drugs have the capacity to quickly induce changes in the structure and function of a persons brain. The experiences of these drugs has been described by users as "Seeing the world through someone-else's eyes". By giving the use a new or different perspective, the temporary psychedelic experience has transfiguring effects on the person. Unfortunately, when these powerful substances are abused in recreational settings, these mind transforming effects can translate into the creation of destructive, dangerous, or negative worldviews. For example, many psychedelic drug users report that during their trip, they believed they could "fly", and several users died while under the influence of these substances while attempting to translate their drug induced belief in un-aided human flight into a fatal sequence of behavioral choices, literally jumping off the edge of a building attempting to fly.

The only safe way to use these powerful mind altering drugs is in a tightly controlled, comfortable, secure, pleasant medical setting. The patient undergoing psychedelic therapy needs to be well informed about the drug they are taking and exactly how it works.

Political propaganda, fear, uncertainty and doubt were the reasons the government forced cessation of and banned medical research on these powerful mind altering substances. Unfortunately, as tools to research to the human mind, nothing else has come along that can quickly cause safe and profound acute changes in a persons mind.

I should not leave without saying there are drug free alternatives to strong psychedelic drugs to changing a mentally sick persons mind. Spiritual worship has been shown to have the same kind of life transforming effects on people. The drugs are simply a chemical shortcut to something that can be far more safely accomplished with a lot of time, effort and devotion. 1 day of an LSD trip can have the same kind of profound impacts on a persons mind as a year or more worth of intense spiritual investment. Addicts who are functionally unable to commit or execute positive lifestyle change and behavior patterns to address their addiction can therefor benefit greatly from professional acute medical treatments with LSD and other drugs like it.

The scourge of mental illness is a widespread problem that afflicts millions of people: ruining their ability to enjoy life the way that God intended. They hold bitterness, unforgiveness, negative thoughts and broken, bigoted and or backward thinking that drives addictions and destructive behaviors. We should be using every tool known to man kind to address mental illness. Mental illness is a costly phenomenon and sickness that not only negatively impacts those who suffer from mental illness: mental illness also harms the people who are related to mentally ill persons.

This is an ethical problem. If mental illness is so common, we have an ethical obligation to use science completely. Shutting down whole swaths of scientific research because of fear, uncertainty and doubt is a moral and ethical failure. The scheduling of drugs like LSD (as medically useless in the law) does not make scientific sense, and the total medical prohibition to that class of psychedlics is without a rational cause or reason. When these powerful psychoactive drugs are used in a clinical setting, they are extremely safe and extremely effective.

The law needs to focus on preventing the unsafe recreational use of these substances because of their extreme power to induce psychological changes in the user. Prohibition against drugs and alcohol has been a costly abysmal failure for a lot of reasons. The governments Job, as it is described in our constitution, is to Tax, Control and Regulate the private sector. Prohibition represents the government attempting to replace the private sector: and it has failed miserably as a result. Not only is the war on drugs a scientific failure, it is also a moral and ethical failure the way it is being implemented. The war on drugs degenerated from its inception as a way to enforce institutionalized bigotry within in a context that allowed the bigotry to be hidden under the false supposed anterior motive of fighting a war against "drugs", as if it is even possible to fight a war against inanimate substances.....

Albert Hoffman, the man responsible for discovering LSD, took LSD sparingly throughout his life. He had an extremely productive career and lived with a perfectly sharp mind to the old age of 102. You can read about him and LSD for yourself. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Albert_Hofmann

I hope that this update provides clarity and insight into how LSD is a useful medical substance to use in a professional clinical setting to address destructive addictions and obsessive compulsive psychological problems. I hope also that this update also clearly conveys why strong psychedelic drugs are dangerous and inappropriate to use in a recreational context.

We need to focus on helping drug addicts, drug abusers and those who create a market for drugs to address the underlying problems driving them to substance abuse in the first place. Drug addicts need medical and psychological help, not time in prison and criminal disenfranchisement. If we spent the time, money and effort currently being wasted in the war on drugs, on addressing mental illness, we would get a lot more for our money as tax payers.

Become part of the solution!
Join LEAP, Law Enforcement Against Prohibition : http://www.leap.cc/


~Aaron K Schwarz
A Concerned Environmental Scientist

2 comments:

  1. Great Post, I love to read articles that are informative and actually have good content. Thank you for sharing your experiences and I look forward to reading more.Treatment are not easy as what we think. It has a process. It consume time, effort and money. Drug rehab or alcohol rehab undergo into a systematic process for recovery.

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