If you have struggled with an addiction to heroin or other opiates, you may have heard about Ibogaine therapy. Ibogaine is a psychoactive compound that is found in various African plants. It has been used by people in West Africa for medicinal and ceremonial purposes for thousands of years, and it has been used as an alternative to traditional addiction treatment in the U.S. since the 1960s. Although there have been few scientific studies on its effectiveness in treating addiction, anecdotal evidence suggests that Ibogaine can reduce or eliminate withdrawal symptoms and lead people on a safe path to recovery.
How Ibogaine Works
Scientists believe that Ibogaine works by activating specific receptors in the brain that are associated with drug addiction and withdrawal. The first type of receptors that it activates are sigma receptors, which are activated by opioids. By weakly activating these sigma receptors, Ibogaine all but stops the symptoms that are associated with opioid withdrawal. Meanwhile, the psychoactive properties of Ibogaine also activate 5-HT2A receptors, much like LSD and similar psychedelic drugs. These drugs have been shown to have antidepressant properties, which can aid in the addiction recovery process.
A single dose of Ibogaine is typically followed by a psychedelic state of about 30 hours. When the patient comes out of that state, they are said to be free of their withdrawal symptoms and can look at the world with a clarity that they did not have before.
The Success Rate of Ibogaine Therapy
Even though there is still relatively little that we know about Ibogaine therapy, we do know that it has been shown to have a tremendous success rate. Studies that have been done on the use of Ibogaine to treat methamphetamine addiction have reported success rates of between 50 and 70 percent, with one doctor reporting success rates of between 70 and 80 percent. When Ibogaine was used to treat addiction to other substances, the success rate was usually between 20 and 50 percent.
Although these numbers are definitely promising, it is important to remember that Ibogaine treatment is not for everybody. It does carry the risk of side effects such as low blood pressure, a slowed heart rate, seizures, and difficulty breathing. As with any kind of addiction treatment, it is crucial to take Ibogaine only in a safe and controlled environment.
It is also important to remember that addiction is a complicated issue that goes deeper than a physical dependency. There are always deeper psychological factors that lead people to use drugs and alcohol, and these issues need to be addressed. Ibogaine therapy may be very effective in treating the physical addiction, and its psychedelic properties have been shown to give people a fresh perspective on their lives, but they will almost certainly need long-term therapy if they do not want to go into relapse.
Where Ibogaine treatment is effective is in treating physical addiction and withdrawal symptoms. There is obviously more to overcoming a substance abuse problem than that, but it does put people on the right path to recovery. In that respect, Ibogaine therapy has an excellent success rate that will continue to increase as the drug is more widely used and accepted as an alternative to traditional drug rehab.
If you are struggling with a substance abuse problem or know someone who is, contact our treatment center to find out if Ibogaine treatment is right for you. We will be happy to answer any questions that you may have.