Despite decades of propaganda aimed at convincing the population that madness was imminent with the repeated use of psychedelic drugs, scientists now say they have discovered conclusive evidence to discount this claim.
Researchers from the Norwegian University of Science and Technology in Trondheim recently set out to examine the minds of over a hundred thousand people in an attempt to get a grasp on the allegations surrounding the consumption of psychedelic drugs and the increased risk of mental health disorders.
The study, which is one of the largest of its kind, investigated 135,000 people – 19,000 of which reported experience with psychedelics – and found nothing to substantiate the claims that drugs like LSD and psilocybin have the potential to drag a person head first into the dismal abyss of madness.
Clinical psychologist Pål-Ørjan Johansen and neurologist Teri Suzanne Krebs, who published their latest results in the March issue of the Journal of Psychopharmacology, say that after examining statistics from the U.S. National Heath Survey, they could find no reasonable connection between people who had pushed the Technicolor boundaries of the mind and serious mental health disorders like depression, psychosis and schizophrenia.
“Over 30 million US adults have tried psychedelics and there just is not much evidence of health problems,” said lead researcher Dr. Pål-Ørjan Johansen.
Contrary to the anti-drug swill that the federal government is infamous for disseminating, Krebs noted “Drug experts consistently rank LSD and psilocybin mushrooms as much less harmful to the individual user and to society compared to alcohol,” as psychedelics carry fewer health risks and are not addictive.
The latest findings reinforce previous research, which suggests that psychedelics like LSD and psilocybin may actually be used to treat individuals suffering from debilitating psychological disorders. However, researchers are quick to point out that this is not to suggest that certain people are not prone to bad trips, and therefore, not appropriate candidates for psychedelic therapy.
“Given the design of our study, we cannot exclude the possibility that use of psychedelics might have a negative effect on mental health for some individuals or groups, perhaps counterbalanced at a population level by a positive effect on mental health in others,” explained Johansen.
Researchers conclude that while nothing in life is free of risk, the use of psychedelics poses no more of a threat to a person’s well being than other activities that have been deemed safe. For this reason, it is difficult to justify the continued prohibition of these substances based on the excuse of public health concerns.