Well, can you smoke shrooms? Yes. The psychoactive ingredient in magic mushrooms, psilocybin, can help heavy smokers stop. But, unfortunately, tobacco addiction treatment has a famously low success rate of about 80%. The current most effective medication, varenicline, only works 35% of the time.
This is huge news as psychedelic drug use for mental health is increasingly being discussed. Clinical investigations of drugs including psilocybin, Ketamine, MDMA, and LSD have surged in the last decade, after a thirty-year hiatus. It’s not just about treating tobacco addiction but also diseases like autism, anxiety, melancholy, and opiate addiction. The FDA-approved pilot research and trials showed such often-maligned medications could be administered safely under regulated conditions and offer encouraging outcomes.
What History Would Tell
It’s not as simple as quitting smoking is with other drugs that directly alter nicotine receptors, according to the principal author of the Johns Hopkins study Matthew W. Johnson. More than any penicillin dose, Johnson added, the smokers’ subjective experience altered them.
In the 1950s, Humphrey Osmond and Abram Hoffer, two Canadian psychiatrists, came to this conclusion after successfully treating alcoholics with LSD therapy. However, the user’s experience of LSD and that of psilocybin are very similar. The LSD treatments developed by Hoffer and Osmond were so effective that the Canadian government declared them no longer experimental but effective.
Four weeks of typical cognitive behavior therapy were given to the 15 participants in the new Johns Hopkins smoking trial. But it was psilocybin that carried the load. Three psilocybin sessions, one moderate and two high doses, per participant.
Aside from the psilocybin, the subjects were told to “go inside” with their eyeshades and earbuds plugged in. However, there was no direction—and no physiological consequences—from the therapists. A moderate fear (of losing control, sanity) was stated by five participants, while an acute fear was voiced by one. A successful outcome was not hampered by any anxious reactions, according to the researchers.
Six months later, 13 of the individuals (80%) had successfully quit smoking. So, again, behaving in your long-term holistic benefit rather than responding to momentary desire.
So, can you smoke shrooms? Yes. Both in daily life and traditional therapy, these seemingly simple personality changes are challenging to attain. Intense mystical-type experiences induced by psilocybin are most likely to blame the many subjects who achieved these perspective alterations. Most (87%) individuals put at least one psilocybin session among their top 10 most memorable life events. Another study by the Johns Hopkins team found that 70% of healthy persons who were administered psilocybin without a therapeutic objective said it was “one of the five most significant life experiences.”
A transcendent experience was linked to greater success in therapy, according to Johns Hopkins researchers.
Yes, there will always be concerns. However, uncontrolled self-administration of psychedelics can cause psychological harm, but it is also doubtful that they will be beneficial in treatment when not under medical supervision.
A significant number of persons in these highly controlled tests, including healthy people with no mental difficulties, reported spectacular positive experiences, raising questions about the future of psychedelics in our culture.