One of the most popular and effective treatment options for CRPS, ketamine, has psychedelic properties. Based on this, it’s not a stretch to wonder whether using other psychedelics like magic mushrooms for CRPS could be effective. Ketamine infusions have given many chronic pain patients their lives back, but it is not necessarily easy to access and is often not covered by insurance. The effects of magic mushrooms share some properties with ketamine, and their effects on pain may be similar. Both have anti-inflammatory effects, and both stimulate neuroplasticity. Psilocybin, the active ingredient in magic mushrooms, has a significantly more favorable safety profile when compared to ketamine. Mushrooms can also be grown at home for virtually nothing and administered at your convenience, so treatment can be extremely cheap.
Check out this podcast interview with a retreat visitor managing CRPS.
Enhanced Physical Therapy
How can increased neuroplasticity benefit someone with neuropathic pain? Well, most of the physical therapy techniques used for pain rely on neuroplasticity to be effective. Both mirror therapy and desensitization techniques are only effective if your brain can be flexible and begin to interpret sensations differently. Adding magic mushrooms for CRPS physical therapy to the mix could mean enhanced results from PT.
Magic mushrooms also have powerful and unique anti-inflammatory properties. When psilocybin stimulates these specific serotonin receptors, it has the effect of regulating certain pro-inflammatory cytokines. The tissues affected most are the nervous system, blood vessels, and intestines. Scientists are investigating the ability of psychedelics to address neuroinflammation. Conclusive results are still quite a way off, but the concept is promising. Neuroinflammation is responsible for a variety of ailments, from chronic depression to chronic pain. Other medications that lower these cytokines have had a positive result reducing the symptoms of Alzheimer’s disease. You can find more information regarding this study here.
Magic Mushrooms: A Cheat Method to Deep Meditation
Telling a chronic pain sufferer to meditate for their pain is a quick way to inspire them to fantasize about cutting your brakes. Probably what annoys us the most about this suggestion is that it is probably factually correct. If it were not true, we would not have those images of monks in flames calmly self-immolating in protest. But telling the wheelchair bound to “just walk it off” is asinine. Expecting someone in unrelenting pain to clear their mind and meditate at a level that that is only attainable for trained experts is unrealistic. Psychedelics can get you to a state resembling deep meditation. You can reap the benefits without all the years of grueling practice and training.
A Different Approach
The method used for pain management is different. It is not the same as the approach used by a person looking to dose for mental health or recreational reasons. In fact, there are a few ways that I can see using mushrooms going wrong for someone with a constant pain condition like CRPS. Though microdosing is popular, it is unlikely to have a significant effect on pain. Microdosers may enjoy a certain period of pain relief and reduced inflammation, especially after starting a new regimen, but this is only a small fraction of the potential benefits. Minidosing often has a mild stimulant effect on me and can exacerbate any current existing pain. The larger doses have a significant effect for me and have never aggravated my pain, but they probably require support and coaching to have a pleasant experience.
The method of using psychedelics for pain is similar to how most clinics approach ketamine infusions. There is a period of loading doses, followed by a transition to maintenance dosing. The challenges are also similar. The potential for success depends heavily on someone’s ability to tolerate and manage a psychedelic experience. Sometimes a cautious approach with minimal doses can also lead to aggravated pain, which can lead someone to conclude that the treatment is not effective. Larger doses, without good coaching and support, can result in a traumatic experience. And most importantly, addressing pain through psychedelics is not a passive process. Not only does the experience require active engagement, but the physical therapy has the most potential for success when accompanied by active participation.
Magic Mushrooms For CRPS: Getting Started
So how do you start with magic mushrooms for CRPS pain? The easiest way is to visit our retreat. We coach you to comfortably manage a strong psychedelic experience. You will learn techniques that you can apply on your own to make sure that the experience remains as pleasant as possible. We use techniques for ensuring a smooth trip. We employ nausea prevention and the use of VR headsets to make everything much more easy to handle. At the retreat, we also do a comprehensive mushroom cultivation class so that you can be independent once you return home.
Approach With Caution
If you cannot attend the retreat and prefer to approach this on your own, try to keep a few things in mind. Several states and municipalities are legalizing or decriminalizing psilocybin. It is going to become easier and easier to find commercial suppliers. Psilocybin is commonly used for mental health or recreational purposes. Most available information regarding its use applies to this and does not apply to pain management. In fact, some of the common recreational dose amounts and microdosing schedules may not only be ineffective for pain management, but they can also temporarily exacerbate pain. Just because someone has experience with mushrooms does not mean that this experience applies to pain management. Taking advice from friends with recreational experience is not a good idea.
The wrong approach and the wrong dosage can do more harm than good. It is easy to get discouraged. A “bad trip” may be a bit traumatic and make it difficult for you to manage psychedelic experiences in the future. The dosing schedule for pain management is tough, especially in the loading dose period. If the experience is not pleasant, you may find it especially difficult to continue. You could miss future benefits.
Many people also have had strong psychedelic experiences without any special support or coaching and to no ill effect. While we would be happy to help you through the experience at the retreat, it is not necessary to visit us to start benefitting from psilocybin. Feel free to drop us a note with any questions. We would be happy to help with whatever information we can regarding mushrooms and pain management. If you would like to join us at a retreat, sign up here.