PTSD (post-traumatic stress disorder) is a terrible condition to suffer from, often making it difficult to lead a normal life. While we often hear it associated with war veterans, it can happen to anyone who goes through a traumatic event such as a hurricane or tornado, earthquake, rape or mugging, automobile accident, etc.
Symptoms of PTSD vary from person to person, but can include re-experiencing the triggering event in various ways, seeking isolation from anything that is a reminder of the event, difficulty being able to feel positive emotions, feeling “on edge” and easily startled.
A possible new treatment of this condition may feel like you are re-experiencing the 60’s!
This new possibility was discovered recently by a group of researchers from the University of South Florida, studying the effects of psilocybin on learning and short-term memory (in mice).
Psilocybin is the psychedelic agent found in certain kinds of mushrooms, sometimes called “Magic Mushrooms.”
The experiment consisted of playing a specific sound, followed by a pause and then a brief shock, like in static electricity.
The theory was that perhaps low-doses of psilocybin would encourage the mice to link the shock with the sound more quickly.
It turned out that it made no difference at all in the learning process to anticipate the shock when they heard the sound.
But what it DID show, and this is the part that is exciting to anyone who has or knows someone that is suffering from PTSD, was to make them unlink the shock from the sound more quickly – the recovery process was shortened with the low-dose of psilocybin.
Although there is a lot of research that still needs to happen, it does suggest that these kinds of compounds might be useful in recovery from PTSD.
Read more about the study at: