Date of Award

Winter 12-14-2021

Document Type

Capstone Paper

Degree Name

Masters of Science in Clinical Mental Health Counseling

Department

Counselor Education

First Advisor

Mary Fawcett

City

Rochester, Minnesota

Abstract

Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) is a stress-based condition that a person develops after being exposed to an overwhelmingly traumatic event. Military troops frequently experience stress and trauma, making them highly susceptible to psychopathology. This paper evaluates nine clinical trials that used either magic mushrooms, marijuana, or MDMA as an adjunct to traditional psychotherapy to treat veterans who suffer from anxiety, depression, PTSD, suicidality, and other psychopathologies. Multiple scholarly journals and articles were read and analyzed, which show support for the therapeutic potential of psychedelic drugs in treating veterans with PTSD. After receiving psychedelic-assisted psychotherapy, the research showed participants experienced a multitude of positive effects, including an improved ability to access and process traumatic memories, a renewed sense of motivation and enthusiasm to engage in life, as well as an increased sense of empathy for self and others. Additionally, psychedelic drugs have been shown to reduce physical pain as well as symptoms of anxiety, depression, PTSD, and suicidality. The studies support the use of psychedelic drugs as an adjunct to psychotherapy and show promise in treating other mental health and wellness issues.

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