Thoughts are powerful and have a profound effect on a person’s physical and mental health. Individuals struggling with mental health disorders sometimes avoid addressing trauma or other underlying issues, and those suppressed thoughts may manifest as physical or cognitive symptoms. Altering how clients think about their condition affects mental health. According to a 2022 Harvard Medicine article by Allison Eck on the effectiveness of psychedelic therapy and psilocybin, the drug “appears to tame self-reflection and all but ruin rumination, that obsessive mental state characterized by excessive, repetitive thoughts.” Exclusive Hawaii Rehab uses psychedelic therapy, including ketamine therapy, to help clients recover from substance use disorder (SUD) and mental health disorders.


What Are Psychedelics?

Psychedelics are drugs that affect mood and cognition. Drugs with psychedelic properties can alter a person’s perception and cognitive function. Clinicians use these drugs to help people reveal parts of their psyche they may have difficulty accessing under normal circumstances.

Clients use psychedelics to gain insights into unconscious or repressed aspects of their disorder. The substances are safe, and research has proven their effectiveness. According to the Journal of Neuroscience, “Psychedelics, also defined as ‘classic serotonergic hallucinogens’ because they interact with the 5-HT system, are strongly involved in the treatment of psychiatric disorders, including depression, anxiety, and cognitive deficits.”

Some of the most common psychedelics include:

  • LSD
  • Psilocybin
  • Ayahuasca
  • Mescaline
  • MDMA
  • Ketamine
  • Scopolamine
  • Ibogaine

Treatment programs at Exclusive Hawaii Rehab take advantage of the healing effects of ketamine and some other psychedelic drugs to help clients heal and process trauma or other repressed emotional issues.

How Do Psychedelics Affect Mental Health?

Healthy brain function allows people to be flexible in reacting to day-to-day experiences. However, some people have difficulty being mindful of their emotional responses due to changes in the brain caused by their condition. Non-pharmaceutical alternatives, including ketamine and psychedelic therapies, allow people to stop trying to control or suppress symptoms and mental states.

Psychedelic therapies help clients connect with memories, thoughts, and beliefs they may have trouble accessing during traditional talk therapy. According to the National Institutes of Health (NIH), “Some types of psychedelic drugs, such as psilocybin and MDMA (ecstasy), have shown promise as therapies for treatment-resistant depression and post-traumatic stress disorder.” The drugs “appear to work by encouraging the growth of new connections between neurons in the brain.”

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What Conditions Are Treated Using Psychedelics?

Psychedelic therapies are used to address a wide range of disorders and symptoms, including:

  • Post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD)
  • Depression
  • Anxiety
  • SUD

Researchers are still uncertain of how exactly psychedelics work. However, studies have shown the drug is effective in treating mental health disorders for some individuals.

What to Expect From Psychedelic Therapy

Every person has a different experience when they engage in psychedelic therapy. Many clients report positive outcomes and find themselves making progress more quickly when psychedelic therapy is combined with traditional psychotherapy and other treatments.

Treatment steps for clients who engage in psychedelic therapy include:

  • Initial Assessment: Clients are assessed to determine if psychedelic treatment is appropriate for their condition and if they feel comfortable engaging in complementary medicine
  • Integration Session: Clients are provided with information and education about the effects and impact of psychedelic therapy and given a reduced dose of the drug
  • Follow-Up Integration Session: Clinicians increase the dose and discuss the client’s reaction to the drug and their goals for treatment

Stigmas Surrounding Psychedelic Therapy

Many stigmas surround psychedelic therapies, including ketamine therapy, despite their current rise in popularity. Clients and their families may express concerns about the safety of using these drugs due to misinformation or social stigmas. However, the drugs are incredibly safe. Ketamine has been used as an anesthetic agent since the 1960s, and the doses for psychedelic drugs in therapy are below the threshold for physical symptoms. According to Bryce Healy, the clinician responsible for providing psychedelic therapy at Exclusive Hawaii Rehab, the treatments “facilitate a therapeutic change of mind” for individuals who may struggle to engage in traditional therapy.

Experience True Healing

Our deeply-caring staff and the surrounding natural beauty offer an unparalleled healing experience.

Treatment Options at Exclusive Hawaii Rehab

Clients are screened and assessed to determine which treatment approach will provide them with the best possible outcomes. Psychedelic therapy is only offered when appropriate. Some clients need a little extra help feeling comfortable sharing aspects of their trauma or symptoms. Alternative treatments, including psychedelic therapy, provide clients with the tools to open up and address issues they may have suppressed or failed to process in a healthy way.

Ketamine Therapy

Exclusive Hawaii Rehab offers ketamine therapy alongside other psychedelic therapies. Ketamine is used to treat multiple mental health disorders, including major depressive disorder (MDD).

Psychedelic therapy offers clients a new way of experiencing recovery and helps with a wide range of mental health issues. Ketamine has been used to treat the following:

  • Obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD)
  • Post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD)
  • Generalized anxiety disorder (GAD)
  • Alcohol use disorder (AUD)
  • SUD

The effects of ketamine are short-lived and are not meant as a primary form of treatment. Ketamine is a complementary treatment that allows people to open up and explore different aspects of their experiences. According to BJPsych Open, “Ketamine effects in depression generally last from a few days to 2 weeks, so repeated dosing is usually necessary to extend recovery.” The effects on other conditions have been less studied and may vary significantly depending on the dose, frequency, and duration of ketamine use. Combining ketamine with psychotherapy has been shown to provide better outcomes for individuals with SUD and mental health disorders.