Are ‘Shrooms the cure for Addiction?

The Journal of Psychopharmacology published a study that indicated that the active ingredient in Shrooms (or Magic Mushrooms; to me they’re interchangeable terms), psilocybin, aids in the cessation of an addiction to nicotine. Basically, researchers administered psilocybin capsules to fifteen (15) smokers over fifteen (15) weeks and found that twelve (12) of the fifteen (15) smokers were able to abstain from smoking. The study left many things to be desired, such as a control group, but the findings are interesting. Authors concluded that, “The present study illustrates a framework for future research on the efficacy and mechanisms of hallucinogen-facilitated treatment of addiction.”

I have to admit, that the quoted line made me chuckle a bit. I envisioned a bunch of tripped-out people seeing kaleidoscope colors in the sky and hearing angels singing. Sure, they don’t want to smoke anymore, but as I saw them, they didn’t want to do much else either (except maybe trip some more). What’s more interesting is that the same journal found that psilocybin also aids in the expansion of creativity in 2011. Kinda makes me wonder if the Journal of Psychopharmacology has a corner on the Magic Mushroom market. Basically, according to the Journal, addicts can not only break their addiction, but they can also become creative people, both through the controlled use of the active ingredient Magic Mushrooms.

Now, I know that there are some really strong reasons for administering medicines. But, I don’t think that a hallucinogen is the answer for Addiction. Really, it makes sense that someone who’s tripping out, legally, wouldn’t want to do anything else. I mean, if an alcohol addict could chill and trip on Shrooms that his doc provides, then why would he drink anymore? Whatever the root cause of his addiction is, on Shrooms, it would just cease to be important. If we, as a treatment community, start using psilocybin to treat addiction, isn’t that basically just transporting the problem into an ethereal mindscape in which nothing else really matters?

Shoot, maybe I should encourage this route of treatment. I mean, it sounds a whole lot easier for people to trip out instead of having to work and reflect and confront their shadow. I could refer a client to a doc who’s willing to provide Shrooms and never have to worry about her health. Hmmm, maybe I should get a prescription for psilocybin; seems a lot easier than reading clinical studies and trying to separate the crap from the good stuff. Then again, I’d probably get bored; my mind already has its moments of, well, trippiness….

Eh, read the study and draw your own conclusions. For me, the solution for an addiction is reflection and learning. I don’t think there are any shortcuts….especially ones that Dennis Leary would approve…


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