OUR busy lives can lead many to find solutions to stress, such as hobbies and therapy, but this man is one of many beginning to administer a unique solution.
Nate Howard is one of the first licensed “shamans” who is helping administer magic mushrooms to help those struggling with PTSD, depression and anxiety.
Oregon began issuing licenses this year for those looking to guide others through their “trips”, but Nate says the interest in psilocybin is nationwide.
Consuming the drug can be done one-on-one with a guide, or in a large group, like ancient shamans did.
And those looking to try the drug come from all walks of life – “depressed hedge fund managers”, “empty nesters” and more.
Nate says the responses to the trips are varied – some prefer to hug a stuffed animal, others prefer to talk, and some are silent.
He said: “You can be sitting with somebody for eight hours, and they barely move.
“There’s also the other side of the coin, where you are working with someone who may want to yell, or scream.”
After Oregon passed legislation allowing the consumption of magic mushrooms, they put strict rules in place: they must be facilitated by a state certified supervisor, like Nate.
He told The Telegraph: “The demand is actually outrageous.
“Whatever it is, people want to come to Oregon and see if this will offer some insight.”
Those attending the sessions are required to fill out a ten page form and have an appointment with the guide before they are given the drug.
But the results are almost instant, and can last up to three months, according to Professor Guy Goodwin of Oxford University.
He said: “The highest dose of psilocybin had the greatest impact on people’s depression.
“This suggests that psilocybin has a true pharmacological effect, a finding that is critical for it to be recognised as a new treatment option in the future.”
The novel treatment could be available to Brits with severe depression in as little as three years, scientists predict.
Psychological therapist, Liam Modlin, said the drug puts people in a “dreamlike” state for six to eight hours, which gives therapists and patients the opportunity to make “emotional breakthroughs”.
If deemed safe, and approved for use on the NHS it could offer a ray of hope for some 2.7million Brits suffering treatment-resistant depression – meaning they have not responded to at least two antidepressant drugs. (Full Story)