Many people may be unaware of the elevated risks for individuals with substance use disorder (SUD) in developing other co-occurring disorders (also known as comorbidities) of mental health. Truth be told, individuals struggling with mental illness also have a much higher likelihood of developing SUD. This is also true regarding psilocybin addiction treatment and comorbidities.
According to the National Institute on Drug Abuse (NIDA), comorbidities and addiction currently affect both adolescent and adult populations at significantly high levels. NIDA recently reported that “Around 1 in 4 individuals with SMI also have an SUD,” and that “over 60 percent of adolescents in community-based substance use disorder treatment programs also meet diagnostic criteria for another mental illness.” Nestled within those statistics are also individuals struggling with psilocybin addiction and comorbidities.
Understanding Psilocybin Addiction
It is not surprising that so many people are relatively unaware of the potential for addiction from psilocybin misuse and abuse. The attention on psilocybin (also known as “magic mushrooms,” “shrooms,” “boomers,” and “buttons”) as of late has focused on its positive properties, which has overshadowed all of its potentially devastating effects. While there is research happening regarding psilocybin’s possible therapeutic possibilities, it is important to remember that such research has to do with clinical trials and not recreational use, which is where the addiction dangers currently lie.
In addition, while it is true that psilocybin use rarely causes physical addiction, it can cause something that is known as “psychological addiction.” A psychological addiction exists in the mind and it is what causes the feelings and emotions that are associated with withdrawal. Yes, all addictions do have a psychological component, but many also have physical dependence that can cause physical distress when no longer ingesting the preferred substance.
However, it is the psychological addiction that causes an individual to keep repeating their damaging and detrimental behaviors. So, for individuals with psilocybin addiction, it can be just as hard to stop as those with any other addiction. This is why recognizing the warning signs of psilocybin addiction can be so crucial. As with any addiction, recognizing it sooner than later can be the difference between short-term side effects and long-term consequences.
Recognizing Psilocybin Addiction and Comorbidities
Now, recognizing SUD and comorbidities offers its own set of challenges. This is because it can be difficult to discern if a symptom or warning sign is associated with SUD or some other co-occurring disorder. Also, this is true with psilocybin addiction and comorbidities.
So, if psilocybin addiction is suspected, the best pathway to healing is to reach out to a mental health professional and/or addiction specialist. They will be able to help determine if comorbidities exist. Also, they will be able to create a recovery plan or direct the individual to a recovery center so they can get the help they need.
Treating Psilocybin Addiction and Comorbidities
It is critically important to understand that comorbidities must be treated at the same time, and to the same level of success. If they are not, there is a very real potential that either the SUD or the co-occurring disorder will resurface and bring with it the other comorbidity. This also emphasizes the importance of selecting a recovery center that focuses on customized recovery plans.
A customized recovery plan will address both psilocybin addiction and comorbidities. The good news is that with psilocybin addiction this will most likely not require a detox as it does not have physical addiction components.