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September 26, 2017

Is Ibogaine the Addiction Treatment Method of the Future?

Treating drug addiction is a delicate process with few solutions. Doing so with another drug is often shunned but, with recent research into new therapizing drugs, this may be one of the best options for successful treatment.

Ibogaine is a drug you might have heard of as being used in countries around the world for opioid addiction treatment, with many addiction centers focusing on it. Approximately 13 million people throughout the world inject drugs at a level that is considered to be an addiction or dependency. Ibogaine offers a ray of hope for the millions of people who want to reclaim their lives and leave opioid addiction in the past.

What is Ibogaine?

To understand how this drug works, it is important to know what it is. It is best described as a type of psychoactive indole alkaloid. Derived from the roots of a shrub found in West Africa, Ibogaine is a hallucinogenic compound.

When someone is using Ibogaine, they are typically awake, but can enter a dream-like state. This allows for closed eye imagery and retrieval of repressed memories.

This substance has been used since 1962 and was discovered by Howard Lotsof. He noticed that when he took higher doses of Ibogaine that his cravings for heroin were completely gone.

Exploring the Research

The research concerning Ibogaine is quite promising.

New Zealand and Mexico have conducted the largest studies concerning using Ibogaine as a type of addiction treatment. Approximately 20 percent of patients in the Mexican study were found to experience long-term relief from the withdrawal symptoms. The New Zealand study had even bigger results, with 50 percent of the patients enrolled in the study exhibiting long-term withdrawal symptom relief.

In the United States, Ibogaine is considered to be a Schedule 1 drug, which means it has a high potential for abuse. Thus, most research into it has been conducted elsewhere. However, this has not stopped scientists across the globe from considering its potential benefits. In fact, Ibogaine is often used around the world in combination with psychotherapy to aid patients in recovering from opioid addiction.

Understanding the Typical Ibogaine Experience

Each person who takes this drug is going to have a different experience, but there are three phases that every individual goes through. Knowing more about these makes it easier to prepare and go into the treatment with a clear mind. The following are the primary phases that people experience:

Acute Phase: This is the initial phase where effects are displayed and happens within one to three hours of taking your dose of Ibogaine. People typically remain in this phase for about four to eight hours. Patients often report feeling like they are in a dream-like state with both visual and auditory hallucinations.

Evaluative Phase: Next, you will enter the evaluative phase of the treatment. This typically starts within four to eight hours of ingesting the drug and it can continue for as long as 20 hours. This phase is often said to be more neutral and reflective. Patients report that they can get distracted easily, so clinics will keep the room as quiet as possible to allow for reflection.

Residual Stimulation Phase: Twelve to 24 hours after ingesting the drug is when this phase usually begins and it can last for 24 to 72 hours. The external environment tends to be the primary focus at this time for patients. Any psychoactive symptoms have disappeared and patients are considerably more aware of their environment.

Ibogaine has the potential to be beneficial for a number of people. In countries where it is being used, it is starting to show great promise in treating opioid addiction.

Advocacy groups are pushing for it to be brought to the United States to aid with the current opioid epidemic faced by the nation. With Fentanyl becoming widespread and 25 percent of overdoses occurring because of heroin, the problem is one that needs solving quickly.

About the Author

Gareth Mooreland is a full-time writer and a content marketing expert and have previously worked for technology companies in the US, UK and Australia. He is the go-to expert to write about technology and business. When not writing, Gareth enjoys taking landscape photos around the world. His lifetime ambition is to visit every country in the world. Only 128 to go!




Edited by Erik Linask
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