A study published last week by the University of B.C. in the Journal of Psychopharmacology has convinced researchers that certain psychedelic drugs – such as MDMA, mushrooms and acid – may reduce the likelihood of domestic violence acts from those with a history of substance abuse, The Vancouver Sun reported. According to the results, 42% of U.S. adult male inmates who didn’t take any psychedelics after being released were arrested again within six years for domestic battery. This number is compared to only 27% of those that had taken psychedelics and were re-arrested with the same charges.

The study followed 302 inmates aged 17-40 for an average of six years after they were released, all of whom had a history with substance use disorders. Of those interviewed about their psychedelic use while in prison, 87% said that they had tried more than one form in the past.

Zach Walsh, one of the researchers, described the reason for the execution of such a study as being intended to educate the public about the misconceptions of such drugs’ effectiveness.

“As existing treatments for intimate partner violence are insufficient, we need to take new perspectives such as this seriously.” – Walsh

Despite not knowing the exact combinations of hallucinogens that the participants had taken, researchers noted evidence supporting MDMA’s ability to create intimacy and understanding within its users. By studying whether such drugs can catalyze a quantum change,  or a “rapid change in an individual’s behavior based on a profound experience,” the team is searching for novel applications toward alterting the sometimes dangerous or violent natures of such users, The Vancouver Sun reported.

“The experiences of unity, positivity, and transcendence that characterize the psychedelic experience may be particularly beneficial to groups that are frequently marginalized and isolated, such as the incarcerated men who participated in this study.” – Walsh

One of the most important aspects of the study, Walsh and the team wrote, is the prospective breakdown of the stigma surrounding psychedelics. With an increased willingness to look into their benefits, they believe that major leaps in medicine and care can be achieved.


Source: Vancouver Sun