There are only a few research on the combination of opioids and psychedelics. However, a study showing the interaction between psychedelics and opioids shows that low doses of opioids reduce the effects of psilocybin, LSD, and DMT, while higher doses can amplify their impact.
If you’re experiencing any type of chronic pain, you might be tempted to combine psychedelics and opioids. Theoretically, this can increase the effects and potency of the drugs, reduce pains, and also enhance your sense of well-being. However, in the actual sense of things, this combination can cause more harm than good.
Continue reading to learn more about the different interactions between the two drugs and understand how you can safely use both substances for chronic pain.
What Are Opioids?
Opioids are a wide class of drugs that are recognized for their pain-relieving and analgesic properties. They are mostly prescribed for treating moderate to severe pains, especially those that are resistant to over-the-counter drugs.
Depending on their source, they can be synthetic, semi-synthetic, or natural. The synthetic opioids are man-made, the semi-synthetic are derived from the opium poppy plant, while the semi-synthetic are synthesized from natural opioids, and an example is morphine.
Examples of some commonly used opioids are hydromorphone, oxymorphone, tramadol, hydrocodone, and oxycodone. Even though opioids are great for reducing both acute and chronic pain, it’s important to note that they are highly addictive, especially following prolonged use or taking higher than prescribed doses.
If you know someone who is battling with opioid dependence, the best thing to do is to seek professional help. Also, abruptly quitting opioids can cause relapse, overdosing, and even death.
What Are Psychedelics?
Psychedelics are also known as hallucinogens, and they are psychoactive drugs that alter the way people experience and perceive reality. Apart from altering senses, these substances and also influence energy, cognition, mood, and more. Studies also show that some of these substances have the potential to trigger auditory and visual hallucinations.
Some of the most common psychedelics are dimethyltryptamine (DMT), Salvia divinorum, MDMA, Mescaline, Psilocybin, and LSD. Psychedelics like mescaline and psilocybin occur naturally in fungi and plants, while psychedelics like LSD are synthesized in a laboratory.
Psychedelics are applied for different purposes. For example, some cultures have been known to use these substances for spiritual and religious purposes for many years. There are also many reports about the use of these substances for self-exploration, recreation, and other similar purposes. Today, there’s a growing interest in the use of these substances for therapeutic purposes, and this includes the management of chronic pain.
Interactions Between Psychedelics and Opioids
The main factor that influences the interaction between psychedelics and opioids is the dose and the type of psychedelics taken. A study on the interactions between both substances showed that low opioid doses can reduce the effects of LSD and DMT, while large doses enhance their effects. However, it’s important to note that this study was done on rats, and with that, it remains unclear the effects of the combination in humans. What remains certain is that mixing the two substances is dangerous and should be avoided.
Risks and Dangers of the Combination
The main risk of using the combination for chronic pain is the potential for an overdose. This is potentially life-threatening and can cause brain damage, coma, or even death. Other signs and symptoms include vomiting, slowed heartbeat, pin-point pupils, pale, discolored skin and tips, loss of consciousness, difficulty breathing, and confusion. Another thing to note about the combination is the potential to suppress the central nervous system and respiratory system.
How to Use Opioids for Chronic Pain
To reduce the risk of overdose and addiction, here are some guidelines to follow:
- Only take opioids as prescribed by your doctor or physician.
- Don’t use opioids if it’s prescribed by someone else.
- Keep opioids out of reach of pets and children, and store them safely.
- Do not increase your dosage without consulting your doctor.
- Inform your doctor about the side effects that you experience while taking the drugs.
- Avoid mixing opioids with drugs and alcohol that can cause unpleasant interactions.
- Tell your doctor about other substances that you are taking before combining them with opioids.
We hope we have cleared up any questions you had about combining psychedelics and opioids in this article. Ultimately, if your doctor prescribes opioids for chronic pain, do not combine them with other substances unless your doctor approves of it. As mentioned above, opioids can interact with different drug substances, including psychedelics and tranquilizers. The combination of these substances can also cause a range of problems, including death.