Ayahuasca: The Dark Side and Dangers
Natural supplements never mean safe supplements, it is a misconception when it comes to substance abuse. Ayahuaca is a psychoactive substance which is comprised of a few different things including banisteriopsis caapi vine and chacruna Psychotria viridis among other things. This plant grows in the Amazon regions, the reason it is categorized as psychoactive is because it creates altered states of consciousness for the user.
When someone is under the influence of Ayahuaca, the results can vary from one person to the next, because every person reacts differently to different substances. For example, some people can use ayahuasca and just find that it’s a little stimulating, while other people report having extreme visions.
Ayahuasca, also known as yage, is a blend of two plants – The ayahuasca vine as mentioned it is also known as Banisteriopsis caapi and a shrub called chacruna Psychotria viridis, which contains the hallucinogenic drug dimethyltryptamine (DMT). The yage having DMT as one of the ingredients is illegal in American, the UK and many other Eastern European countries. The experience produced from Ayahuasca is from the DMT in the tea, and this is why so many people just associate this substance with a form of “experiencing a trip”.
Ayahuasca could have serious side effects for someone who is using this drug with a history of any mental health issues because of the “trip” for somebody who has a history of mental health problems, this drug could be responsible for triggering such a problem in those who are predisposed but unaware of it.
But in South America ayahuasca is an integral part of some tribal societies. In 2008, Peru’s government recognised ayahuasca’s status, stating that it was “one of the basic pillars of the identity of the Amazon people. So this is most common in the Central and South American regions.
The History of Ayahuasca Begane in the 16th Century
As previously mentioned it is still used in religious ceremonies in the South and Central Americas. The only other reason people would be using this drug is for the DMT high it produces and to be used recreationally.
After a half hour of drinking the tea, the first symptoms of the high are experienced for the user. There are hallucinations that are experienced, but not like an LSD high. It is most commonly described as an emotional and spiritual high instead of solely recreational.
The area of the brain affected by an Ayahuasca high that decrease stimulation are often associated with social phobias, depression and anxiety; so for those with these mental health conditions may be consuming the tea for benefits for these disorders. DMT in the yage (Ayahuasca) helps with memory and regeneration of neurons. In some situations people may consume this tea while working through alcoholism, substance abuse, or depression. This is difficult to measure and subjective in context.
Is Ayahuasca Legal?
There are no psychedelic drugs legal in America. The one ingredient found in Ayahuasca is not legal, DMT. Without DMT in the yage, there wouldn’t be the same effects at all. Most places in the world, DMT is not legal. The only exceptions are for certain religions when they’re using ayahuasca tea as part of a legitimate religious event.
Your Brain On the Hallucinogenic Drug Ayahuasca
Classified as a hallucinogen, psychedelic drug Ayahuasca many users will definitely have a unique experience after consuming the tea. This experience would be a different hallucinogen experience than mushrooms or LSD though, the “trips” are not similar. Instead of hallucinating voices the sounds are just exaggerated. Users are much more self-aware when under the effects of Ayahuasca and know what is going on around them.
The user will experience the first effects around 30 minutes after consumption. The peak of the trip will happen after and hour and last anywhere from four to six hours for a typical high, but of course- as previously mentioned- these highs depends on each different person.
In cases of depression, people may use the drug to deal with past trauma and painful experiences to cope with accepting these situations. There are many different new aged therapy ideas that involve hallucinogens during sessions. If just the DMT was taken, the high is quick- lasts only about 20 or so minutes, but the ayahuasca can last hours.
How ayahuasca functions within the brain deals with activity in the limbic system. The limbic system is responsible for how you process your emotions and memories. It can also create a meditative state in the brain, which can quiet overactive actions of your brain that lead to depression and anxiety. Adding the element of the DMT element of ayahuasca interacts with your serotonin receptors, which has an impact on things like vision and emotion.
As new research has shown, but is still limited, it really is not out of the question that hallucinogens or psychedelic drugs like ayahuasca can help treat instances of anxiety, depression or PTSD. All substances has risks and side effects, so caution is highly advised.
Ayahuasca Tea—Is It Safe?
People frequently wonder if ayahuasca tea is safe. One of the most common side effects of using ayahuasca tea that occurs is vomiting, although in religious and spiritual ceremonies this is often equated with releasing negative elements from your life.
Proponents would say that ayahuasca is fairly safe, in general. The research however is very limited. When individuals are tripping on certain substances, actions can be random, unexpected, and vary with each different person. There have been deaths from this drug, but always from other conditions or other drug interactions. There is no guarantee that this drug is safe at the end of the day, and we would never suggest use for you or your loved one.
Ayahuasca Effects—What You Need to Know About the Side Effects
There are different types of side effects when it comes to the use of Ayahuasca. Just because this is a natural supplement, does not mean it is safe. There are both physical side effects and also psychological side effects to be mindful of.
Physical Ayahuasca Effects
The first physical effect of Ayahuasca that is typically experienced is vomiting and diarrhea Many people who take ayahuasca say this is a good side effect, it is purging negativity and is a cleanse for the digestive system. There are also further complications that could happen such as dehydration. The following bullet points generally come from the DMT component in the yage.
Rapid heart rate
Increased blood pressure
Seizures (less common)
Psychological Ayahuasca Effects
Every individual has a different experience when hallucinating. It is extremely important to realize there’s no way to predict how you will react and what your experience will be like. Just because this is a natural supplement, does not mean it is safe. There are also psychological side effects to be mindful of that can be negative.
Extreme scary experiences
Individuals have said there are some side effects of ayahuasca that have been experienced many weeks after consumption of the tea. The environment and mind-state of the individual is extremely important when consuming any kind of psychedelic drugs.
Other potentially deadly risks associated with ayahuasca and DMT include seizures, respiratory arrest, and coma. In people who have pre-existing mental disorders like schizophrenia, there can also be severe side effects when using ayahuasca.
Is Ayahuasca Addictive?
Yage, and the actual drug in Ayahuasca that makes the hallucinations, DMT is not currently known for being potentially physically addictive or for users to experience a dependence on the drug. There is however a psychological craving many individuals have mentioned. This is common in most hallucinogens we deal with.
DMT’s chemical makeup might not lead to addiction, but it is important to note that people often become psychologically addicted to the experience of using a drug like DMT or drinking ayahuasca tea. Continuous use is a problem when it comes to “tripping” on Ayahuasca. There are root causes we address at The Beaches Treatment Center so why people may want to escape their reality or have a connection with other people that can come from the circumstances surrounding ayahuasca.
The Beaches Treatment Center for Ayahuasca Addiction Recovery
At The Beaches Treatment Center, we know what it takes to heal from any prescription medication addiction. We offer a serene, safe, encouraging and comfortable place to receive treatment for any addiction issues. We give our clients the hope to successfully complete treatment but also reintegrate with society in order to be a successful contributing member. We enjoy providing the tools needed to treat the core of their addiction issues so they no longer have the need to numb their feelings or emotional pain.