Every veteran faces the risk of having to live with trauma for the rest of his or her life. Suicidal thoughts, anger, and fantasizing about killing are just a few of the dangers that often accompany post-traumatic stress. This comes as a result of having been in combat or any other dangerous, shocking, or scary event.
Close to 500,000 Iraq and Afghanistan veterans suffer from Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) but only half of them will seek some form of help through treatment. Statistics show that every day about 22 veterans commit suicide.
Most of the times, a specialist will prescribe anti-anxiety medications, antidepressants, group therapy programs, Electroconvulsive therapy, and such to deal with the person’s totally shocked nervous system. The nervous system is said to be shocked because the person who suffers from PTSD is living full time in the part of the brain that’s designed to protect us from danger. It’s like the nervous system needs to be reset.
However, traditional therapy doesn’t usually work for PTSD because you can’t always just talk or think your way through that kind of trauma.
While doing an online search, hoping to relieve their symptoms, two young veterans came across the Multidisciplinary Association for Psychedelic Studies (MAPS) website where a research study was about to open up in Boulder, Colorado. They both qualified for the program but met some resistance from family members because of the substance that would be used in the study.
Preliminary studies done by MAPS showed that MDMA used in conjunction with psychotherapy was very useful in helping people overcome PTSD and possibly other disorders. MDMA is known for its euphoric effects. It’s usually the active ingredient in what’s commonly known as ecstasy and molly – two popular party drugs. It’s worth clarifying that many of the substances that are sold on the street actually contain dangerous adulterants instead of MDMA, though. The MAPS research would be using pure MDMA prepared by qualified chemists in a lab.
In MDMA-assisted psychotherapy, the drug is only administered a few times, unlike other medications that require prolonged use. After a few sessions the patient is expected to show a decline in most of his or her PTSD symptoms. Will the use of this powerful stigmatized drug really shed some light on the treatment of PTSD? Find out more now.