At the birthplace of American blues, Louisiana state is seeing a resurgence of psychedelic-enthused residents. Where world renowned Mardi Gras celebrations meet a melting pot of rich cultures, inquisition about the legality of psychedelic-assisted therapy is starting to run high. This, of course, comes as little surprise.
As more and more scientific studies continue to prove the efficacy of psychedelics for treatment of a wide variety of disorders, states have begun to develop regulations for public access to psychedelic-assisted therapy. Now, Louisiana state residents are curious to know what the future holds for psychedelic medicine in their state.
Today we’ll be exploring the current legislation surrounding psychedelic-assisted therapy in the state of Louisiana. Not only will we review the cultural climate of psychedelics in the state, but we’ll also go over the benefits of psychedelic-assisted therapy and what options Louisianians have for legally embarking on a therapeutic psychedelic experience.
Current Legislation of Psychedelics in Louisiana
In some cases, a state’s cannabis laws can be an indicator for the prospective legislative support of psychedelics. In Louisiana, this may reign fairly accurately. As of the moment, cannabis is only legal for medicinal use, with possession of 14 grams for recreational use being decriminalized across the state.
Currently, hallucinogenic drugs like LSD, MDMA, and mescaline are classified as Schedule I substances. Substances under this classification are considered to have no accepted medical purposes with a high potential for abuse. Psilocybin mushrooms or ‘magic’ mushrooms are considered as a Schedule I (C) substance, which deems it moderately safer than other Schedule I drugs like heroin.
Of course, science has long concluded the medicinal properties of psychedelic drugs and their remarkably low potential for abuse, but will state government officials come around to acceptance of their therapeutic value? Unfortunately, that still remains unclear.
The recent decriminalization of marijuana might suggest a level of legislative openness to novel mental health treatments, but no further comments have been made by state officials regarding psychedelic reform. Luckily, psilocybin spores are completely legal to possess in Louisiana, as is the case in most other U.S. states,
However, residents must keep in mind that psilocybin spores cannot be germinated, once psilocin (the active metabolite of psilocybin mushrooms) starts to become present in the fruiting body, charges for illegal possession and cultivation of a Schedule 1 substance, could ensue.
In Louisiana, possession of 28 grams or less of a psychedelic substance may result in 1 to 10 years of imprisonment and up to $50,000 in fines. Possession of more than 28 grams may result in up to 20 years of incarceration and similar fines.
Interestingly, the temperate forests of Louisiana are home to an abundant number of psilocybin-containing fungi. Notably, Psilocybe baeocystis and Psilocybe cubensis are amongst the most common. In ranches where cow dung is regularly present, you can often find Psilocybe mexicana growing plentiful.
The Therapeutic Benefits of a Psychedelic Experience
Psychedelics are being studied for their efficacy in the treatment of both psychological and somatic conditions. A large body of past and ongoing clinical trials have confirmed their long-term treatment of disorders like depression, anxiety, and PTSD.
Now, popular biotech companies like MindMed and research institutions like MAPS and Johns Hopkins University are looking into their potential for treating cluster headaches and migraines, ADHD, and early-stage neurodegenerative diseases like Alzheimer’s.
These hallucinogenic medicines share several therapeutic properties that have gained the interests of researchers around the world. One of their therapeutic mechanisms is their spectacular ability to reduce activity in the Default Mode Network (DMN).
The DMN is a region of the brian responsible for creating our sense of self. It hosts and propagates the ruminating mental narratives that are present in absence of our focused attention, such as when we unconsciously replay images of the past or anxiously fixate on conditions of the future.
Unsurprisingly, the DMN is known to experience hyperactivity in people with depression, anxiety, OCD, eating disorders, and PTSD. The keen ability of psychedelics to sustainability reduce this overactivity, makes them a high contender for novel mental health approaches.
In people with such disorders, neuronal atrophy is very often a cause for continued degeneration and dampened neural communication. Amazingly, clinical studies have found that only one dose of a serotonergic psychedelic like LSD or psilocybin, can increase the number and density of neuronal connections by over 10%.
Through a process called neurogenesis, psychedelics stimulate the birth of new neurons which strengthen signaling pathways by replacing dead or damaged cells. They promote the growth and lengthening of axons and dendritic spines. Think of these structures as the limbs of our brian cells.
By lengthening and densifying them, our neurons are exposed to many more points of contact by which they can better communicate. This enhancement caters to more appropriate neuronal and thus neurochemical signaling which assists in more appropriate emotional regulation.
In many cases, mood disorders are a result of insufficient serotonin transmission. Fortunately psychedelics act on 5-HT (serotonin) receptors to produce their hallucinogenic effects. Unlike traditional pharmaceutical medications like SSRIs, psychedelics don’t only help modulate serotonin production when we’re on the substance.
Rather, they create new serotonin receptors so that when we’re not on the psychedelic substance, our brains are equipped with the neurological tools to produce the same amount of serotonin on its own. When we cease use of psychedelics, whether by discontinuing a microdosing regimen or pausing high-dose use, discontinuation symptoms are not present.
Where antidepressants require an often tedious process of tapering down and are accompanied by harsh side effects like emotional numbness, migraines, and insomnia, psychedelics show no presence of adverse discontinuation effects.
On a more subjective level, psychedelics allow us to experience life from a less rigid and self-constrained perspective. Though this explanation is very oversimplified, psychedelics expose us to the unhealthy thinking habits and routines of our day-to-day lives. Often this occurs through an all-encompassing experience of oneness that allows us to regain a conscious connection with our authentic expressions and perspectives.
Where To Find Legal Psychedelic Experiences in Louisiana 2022
As of right now, there are two options for embarking on a therapeutic psychedelic experience in Louisiana: Ketamine infusion clinics and guided psychedelic journeys with Psychedelic Passage.
- Ketamine Clinics
Ketamine clinics are popping up across the nation and Louisiana state is no exception. Recently, off-label ketamine use has been approved as a therapeutic option for treatment-resistant depression and PTSD. Though we should note, ketamine is not a traditional psychedelic.
In fact, ketamine is a dissociative anesthetic that has been used in operating rooms since the 1960s. Its longstanding presence in our medical pharmacopeia has allowed for a much quicker legislative approval and a more fluid transition of its medical applications, than psychedelics like LSD and psilocybin.
Ketamine’s effects allow people to observe themselves from a second person point of view. In this way, journeyers are able to analyze their current life circumstances with less personal attachment to the specific problems and more empathy toward themselves as a human. The drug allows journeys to experience a more objective view on their conditions and address ongoing issues with less negative emotional influence.
Though ketamine can be of extreme therapeutic value, not all ketamine clinics are made equal. This is to say that a lot of clinics fail to abide by therapeutic protocols that are vital for the proper integration of ketamine use.
If you’re looking to find a ketamine clinic near you, always conduct a healthy amount of research beforehand. Explore the level of integrative support that their programs offer and ensure that there are qualified psychedelic facilitators on staff.
- Guided Psychedelic Journeys with Psychedelic Passage
If you’re interested in exploring a broader scope of psychedelics like LSD, psilocybin mushrooms, DMT, etc, Psychedelic Passage may offer exactly what you’re looking for. Our 5 week program is designed for personal transformation and involves thorough guidance through preparation and integration processes.
We’ve made it our mission to curate a network of psychedelic facilitators that have the necessary experience and emotional capacity to hold a completely conscious and safe space during your psychedelic experience. We understand how vulnerable and personal this healing experience can be, and that’s why we offer our services from the comfort of your own home.
We prioritize personal autonomy every step of the way because mental health treatment should not be assessed from a one-size-fits all approach. This means that with Psychedelic Passage, you’ll have full control over how your program looks and the pace at which you’d like to traverse it.
Our income-based program pricing allows us to meet you where you are financially. It’s very important to us that access to these medicines are equal amongst all communities. That’s why we’ve created a BIPOC and low-income fund that subsidizes the cost of our program for those who are in need of extra assistance.
Find Your Next Psychedelic Journey in Any Major Louisiana City
- New Orleans
- Baton Rouge
- Lake Charles
- Bossier City
Psychedelic Culture in Louisiana
Established in 2019, the Louisiana Psychedelic Society has over 260 community members. The group uses their platform to advocate for the decriminalization of psychedelics by offering a safe space to discuss ongoing legislative action and promoting harm reduction practices.
By joining their group you’ll gain access to a community of psychedelic enthusiasts that exchange experiences, culture, and personal views on these medicines. You can request to join this group through the Meetup.com platform.
Trystereo is a harm reduction network that was founded in 2011 by Louisiana volunteers. They offer harm reduction resources for all drug use, not only psychedelics. By providing free access to Naloxone, wound care kits and training, and sterile supply kits, this organization is an incredibly supportive resource for people who use drugs in southeastern Louisiana.
Explore How It Feels To Be Connected
Now, we’ve come to the conclusion of our article and it’s likely that you’re considering embarking on your own psychedelic healing journey. If that’s the case, we empower you to book a consultation with us and get connected with our network of facilitators.
If you have any lingering curiosities about psychedelics and their therapeutic applications, head on over to our resources page and check out our extensive bibliotheca of informative articles just like one. Well friends, that’s all we have for you today. Safe journeying!