Psychedelics have been a party drug for decades. However, some argue psychedelics have a role in society beyond the party, and they have been waiting a long time for substances such as MDMA to receive the recognition it deserves.
The political climate surrounding the use of psychedelics is evolving and leading to break-through research in MDMA-assisted therapy.
Currently, the Multidisciplinary Association for Psychedelic Studies (MAPS) is conducting research showing how psychedelics are useful in a therapeutic setting.
Specifically, the research, now in phase three, is underway across the nation and should conclude in 2021.
Researchers are learning that Methylenedioxymethamphetamine (MDMA) helps those who struggle with treatment-resistant Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD).
The expectation is the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) will approve a prescription treatment by 2022 for those who have PTSD.
What is MDMA?
MDMA is a synthetic stimulant drug that causes hallucinations and a sense of euphoria.
The street name for MDMA is Molly, and when MDMA is in pill form, it is Ecstasy, both of which are a banned substance.
However, the street drugs that claim to contain MDMA often contain fillers or other drugs that can be dangerous.
What is PTSD?
PTSD is a disorder that develops after a traumatic event. Symptoms of PTSD include terrifying thoughts and flashbacks. These symptoms get in the way of the sufferer’s regular life and can lead to suicide.
Researchers see a need to improve therapies for PTSD, as many who suffer are treatment-resistant and do not find relief with available therapeutic options.
Therefore, they maintain their PTSD diagnosis.
What is MDMA-Assisted Therapy?
Researchers found that participants in the MDMA studies improved significantly.
After the second MDMA session, 68 percent of patients no longer qualify for a PTSD diagnosis.
These results remained steady at 67 percent a year later during a follow-up.
Psychedelic Therapy Training
With FDA approval on the horizon and the overall acceptance pf psychedelics by the medical community, there is an opportunity for therapists to become qualified to administer MDMA as part of their therapeutic practices.
However, therapists must attend training to understand harm reduction and to learn the framework for understanding how MDMA works in therapy.
For more information on how MDMA can help with PTSD, check out this video.
What is next for Researchers?
Once the research is concluded, researchers expect to explore how MDMA-assisted therapy can help with other treatment-resistant conditions such as depression.