Therapy has played a vital role in society for centuries now. Sharing vulnerable
conversations with a trained therapist (heck, even a trusted family member or friend!) has
helped people break free from depression, overcome internalized limiting beliefs, shine in
their careers, et cetera, et cetera.
But now a new form of therapy seems to be supercharging the benefits of the ‘traditional’
approach. This new form is called psychedelic therapy — and this blog will be all about it.
Keep reading to learn more
- What even is psychedelic therapy?
- Who is psychedelic therapy for?
- Top psychedelic therapy spots in Canada
- Psychedelic counseling in Vancouver
- Psychedelic-enhanced psychotherapy in Calgary
- Psychedelic-assisted psychotherapy in Edmonton
- Psychedelic-assisted therapy in Saskatoon
- Guided psychedelic therapy in Regina
- Guided psychedelic therapy in Winnipeg
- Psychedelic-assisted therapy in Toronto
- Guided psychedelic therapy in Ottawa
- Psychedelic-assisted therapy in Montreal
- Psychedelic-assisted therapy in Fredericton
- Psychedelic-enhanced psychotherapy in Halifax
- Summing things up
What even is psychedelic therapy?
Psychedelic therapy, also known as psychedelic counselling, is exactly what you’d think based on its name:
A new form of therapy that combines a) therapy and b) psychedelics.
While psychedelic therapy can involve any given psychedelic, we’ll focus on the most popular form of this therapy for now: psilocybin-mushroom-fueled therapy.
Another thing to note: psychedelic therapy likely isn’t all that new. It’s newly popular and currently experiencing a modern resurgence, sure, but people have likely been taking psychedelics and bearing their hearts to others for eons!
These contextual points aside, let’s take a closer look at psychedelic therapy 101.
Psychedelic therapy usually goes something like this:
- The patient goes in to meet with a pair of therapists, most commonly a male and female.
- The patient and therapists undergo several traditional therapy sessions
- These ‘preparatory’ sessions are used to build rapport and increase trust
- A final preparatory session is done to go over patient expectations prior to the psychedelic session
- The therapists support the patient throughout the entire psychedelic experience, for up to 8 or 10 hours
- The patient is provided with aids like eyeshades and preselected music playlists and encouraged to ‘let go’ as they see where the plant medicine wants to take them
- In some cases, patients repeat the above psychedelic session as many times as necessary
- After the psychedelic session is over, several shorter ‘integrating’ sessions help the
patient incorporate their realizations into their conceptualization of who they are!
PAP (psychedelic-assisted psychotherapy) is growing increasingly popular throughout Canada, parts of the EU, and other areas where psychedelics are being legalized. Keep reading to learn if it’s right for you.
Who is psychedelic therapy for?
In essence, psychedelic therapy might just be right for you if you feel consistently limited by your thoughts. Some psychologists and sages call these types of thoughts self-limiting beliefs. All of us have them — but the degree to which we can move past them may determine our degree of success.
Speaking of success, psychedelic therapy may help you realize what really matters. And part of realizing what really matters is realizing what doesn’t! Many of us spend huge sections of our lives being led around, almost unwittingly or subconsciously, by our egos. Why’s that bad? Because the ego has a hunger for materialistic success that can almost never be satisfied.
To take the two shifts above in tandem, psychedelic therapy can help you get closer to who you really are — not who your ego wants you to be — and drop limiting beliefs in the process. Sounds pretty good to us!
Psychedelic integration therapy may also be right for you if:
- You have PTS/PTSD
- You struggle with substance addiction
- You need an extra boost of creativity for work or school
- You have mental health conditions (depression, anxiety, etc)
- You experience what feels like ‘stuck thoughts’ and want to rewire your brain
Some of the benefits of psychedelic therapy, however, are yet to be quantified by the scientific world. And that’s okay! As Jordan Petersen tells Tim Ferris on his podcast, “there’s a religious aspect to it. There’s a meaningful aspect to it that we don’t understand. We can’t understand it scientifically or we haven’t been able to. The scientific viewpoint excludes that to some degree.”
Peterson goes on to explain Terence McKenna’s stoned ape hypothesis, which states that psilocybin and humanity evolved almost in tandem, fueled by the other party’s growth. In fact, Peterson says, we’re not even the only species to use psychedelics. Other mammals use them, too, as do flies (that’s why the Amanita Muscaria mushroom is nicknamed Fly Algaric). Perhaps many different life forms have taken to their own varieties of psychedelic therapy?
Top psychedelic therapy spots in Canada
Psychedelic therapy is becoming increasingly popular in Canada. There are now therapy centres located in just about every major city and province!
Psychedelic counseling in Vancouver
If you’re looking to experience the psychedelic therapy experience in Vancouver, look no further than Thrive Downtown. This therapy center welcomes everyone — so long as you’re willing to acknowledge that healing is a process and able to commit to follow-up therapy sessions. Thrive’s team also states the therapy they offer isn’t a quick fix or something to try out of desperation.
Psychedelic-enhanced psychotherapy in Calgary
Something big happened in February of this year: Calgary’s first psychedelic therapy centeropened up! Called the ATMA Urban Journey Clinic, this center aims to offer a holistic alternative to conventional mental health treatments “It’s kind of the opposite of what a typical antidepressant or psychotic medication would
do,” company CEO David Harder explains to The Homestretch.
While those treatment options tend to “suppress or numb down what’s happening in your emotions and spirit body, […] psychedelics will actually raise those things and allow a therapist to work with you to really work through.”
One patient, named Tony White, says that his magic mushroom-fueled therapy allowed him to let go of the anxiety and depression that surrounds death. “I just was lying there and I felt like I couldn’t be at more peace then, right then and there,” White reported several weeks after a therapy session. Other patients report being freed from less severe — but still very real — fears.
Psychedelic-assisted psychotherapy in Edmonton
Are you looking for a psychedelic therapy centre in Edmonton? If so, look no further than PsiloTec. This Edmonton startup is led by psychiatrist Dr. Peter Silverstone, an entrepreneur with over 30 years of experience researching the brain-drug connection.
According to some metrics PsiloTec may be the first completely integrated psychedelic drug company in all of North America. Their leadership team has 40+ years of experience and is responsible for 300+ psilocybin-related clinical studies. If you’re looking to experience psychedelic therapy under the care of experienced professionals, Edmonton’s option could be a great one.
Psychedelic-assisted therapy in Saskatoon
New Earth Therapy is Saskatoon’s first psychedelic integration therapy center. While their services are comprehensive, they work through a sort of legal loophole: they don’t actually provide substances nor instruct on how to access them.
That means it’s up to each patient to bring their psychedelic(s) into the therapeutic picture — the center has experience with psilocybin, ayahuasca, MDMA, ketamine, LSD, peyote, and more. (We’d recommended premium shrooms as your substance of choice!)
Guided psychedelic therapy in Regina
Psychedelic therapy and Saskatchewan go way, way back. As the Canadian Encyclopedia reports:
“In the 1950s, Saskatchewan was home to some of the most important psychedelic research in the world. Saskatchewan-based psychiatrist Humphry Osmond coined
the word psychedelic in 1957. In the mental health field, therapies based on guided LSD and mescaline trips offered an alternative to long-stay care in asylums.”
Legal changes eventually stifled Regina’s early psychedelic research, despite the fact that most patients were experiencing incredible outcomes. Up to 90% of alcoholics in one study experienced lasting remission from their addiction.
Fast forward to modern times, however, and Regina’s psychedelic scene has been a little slow to come full circle. We’re not currently aware of any Regina-based psychedelic therapy centers. Here’s to hoping that changes in the near future!
Guided psychedelic therapy in Winnipeg
Are you located in Winnipeg, Canada? If so be sure to check out the Enhanced Therapy Institute. The Institute was founded in 2020 with a mission to “support the global effort towards medical legalization of ethical, safe, and effective MDMA-Assisted Therapy, with the emphasis on relationship healing.”
Enhanced Therapy Insitute plans to expand its offerings to include psilocybin once the laws become a little friendlier to it. It seems like they’re a fan of any psychedelic whose teachings can be combined with therapy and “integrated into everyday life.”
Psychedelic-assisted therapy in Toronto
Finding a good place for psychedelic-assisted therapy in Toronto has probably never been easier. Below are three good options:
Field Trip: the spa-like option Field Trip is Toronto’s new kid on the psychedelic-enhanced therapy block. It’s got a spa- like vibe that’s perfect for transcending to new levels of consciousness!
Canadian Rapid Treatment Centre of Excellence (CRTCE): the scientific optionLocated at Mississauga and Summerhill, this rapid treatment centre specializes in using
ketamine to treat mental health disorders like depression and BPD.
Remedy: the holistic option
Remedy is located in Toronto’s Koreatown neighbourhood and is designed to merge psychedelic therapy with cutting-edge research.
Guided psychedelic therapy in Ottawa
A new Canadian Rapid Treatment Centre of Excellence opened up in Ottawa near the start of this year. For now the Centre features ketamine — not psilocybin — but they hope to change that once the province of Ontario becomes friendlier towards shrooms.
Thankfully, ketamine has benefits of its own. “Over twenty clinical trials have demonstratedthat ketamine and esketamine have rapid and robust antidepressant effects in patients that have failed to respond to conventional antidepressants. During the COVID-19 pandemic, the need for effective treatment has become exponentially critical,” affirms CRTCE’s medical director, Dr. Joshua Rosenblat.
Psychedelic-assisted therapy in Montreal
MindSpace is likely Montreal’s top psychedelic therapy center. Like many other studies, MindSpace got started with ketamine-assisted therapy, but they’re adding psilocybin into the mix soon. “We will be delivering best-in-class, leading-edge mental health solutions nationwide in 2021, with the intention to include MDMA and psilocybin-assisted psychotherapy,” MindSpace explains on their website.
Psychedelic-assisted therapy in Fredericton
Located in Fredericton, Field Trip Health Centres “[exists] to bring people to life through evidence-based, medically-supervised psychedelic therapies for healing depression and other tough-to-beat mental health conditions.”
The intention might be based in science, but the vibe at Field Trip Health Centres is decidedly spa-like. It’s a great place to sit back, relax, and get some healing done! If internalized problems are blocking your progress in life, this Centre might be the place for you.
Psychedelic-enhanced psychotherapy in Halifax
There aren’t as many good psychedelic-assisted clinics in Halifax as there are in other areas of Canada. And that means people who are seeing this type of healing experience have had to go underground.
“There is a growing trend of underground therapy,” Halifax Psychedelic Society founder Justin Andrews tells CBC. “We’re staying as above board as possible with everything, but it is hard. People want this. People are excited about the healing potential which is why I stress that people understand the politics and policy behind these things.”
Here’s to hoping Halifax residents have better options in the near future.
Summing things up
“We have the technological power […] to save our planet […],” Terence Mckenna once said.
“But we lack the intellectual vision, the ability to change our minds. We must decondition ourselves from 10,000 years of bad behavior. And it’s not easy.”
Changing your outlook on life is never easy, but psychedelic therapy offers may offer a way to turn things around from the inside out. Consider experiencing what this unique type of therapy is like for yourself! You might even consider going on a psychedelic retreat.
Just keep in mind that most — if not all — of today’s psychedelic therapy centers don’t actually provide any psychedelics. You’ll need to supply those yourself! If you’re in need of a good source, give 3 Amigos a try. We have some of the top-ranked shrooms in all of