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News METH | Meth overdoses surpassing heroin deaths ->

mr peabody

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What is methamphetamine?

Methamphetamine is a dangerous and powerful chemical that first acts as a stimulant but then begins to systematically destroy the body. Meth releases high levels of dopamine when ingested and then blocks the normal flow of dopamine in the absence of the drug. These neurotransmitters involve the reward system that regulates pleasure, happiness, motivation, energy, and functional ability. Meth changes the way the brain functions; the brain becomes dependent on the drug to survive.

Meth use deteriorates the body from the inside out, creating a devastating dependence that can only be relieved by taking more of the drug.

What is ibogaine?

Ibogaine is a powerful psychedelic from West Africa known for its miraculous ability to cure or drastically reduce meth addiction in a single treatment. It can also help people overcome addiction to prescription opiates such as morphine, methadone, Vicodin, Percocet, and OxyContin. While this may sound too good to be true, scores of personal testimonies and now clinical research is backing up this claim, and iboga treatment centers are popping up all over the world specializing in treating addiction, post traumatic stress, and mood disorders.

Ibogaine addiction recovery therapy

Treatment with Ibogaine offers an extremely high success rate for recovery from meth addiction. After treatment they hold a new vision for life that is full of possibility with no desire physically or psychologically to use the drug again.

Ibogaine works by resetting the neurotransmitters damaged by drug abuse. Treatment with Ibogaine will help one understand the reasons they have been led to addiction in the first place, and allow them to process these issues so that there is healing on a deep fundamental level.

Ibogaine is a psychedelic medicine found in the bark of an African shrub with strong anti-addictive qualities that will help you achieve your two most difficult goals.

1) Ibogaine can significantly reduce opiate/opioid withdrawal symptoms in under 24 hours.

2) Ibogaine eliminates the desire for opiates/opioids. Many people who have taken Ibogaine swear that it cured their addiction altogether.

Ibogaine treatment has a mortality rate of 1 in 300, with deaths coming from brachycardia (heart rate slowing way down) and lethal combinations with other drugs. The risks of this treatment should therefore be weighed very carefully, and flood treatment should only be done in a medical setting.

Doctors and treatment providers have found that small daily doses seem to work better for meth addiction than the mind-blowing "flood doses" used on opiate addicts.




Researcher Howard Lotsof, PhD, addicted to heroin and methadone, discovered the anti-addictive action of ibogaine in 1962. Given a capsule of pure ibogaine by a trusted friend, Lotsof was simply seeking a new high. He was astonished when coming out of this difficult experience 36-opiate-abstinent hours later to realize he had no physical craving for opiates and even more remarkably, very little of the agonizing physical symptoms normally associated with opiate withdrawal.

Ibogaine is not approved for any medical uses in the U.S., though it is used as an alternative medicine treatment for drug addiction in some countries. Its prohibition has slowed scientific research. The use of Ibogaine for drug treatment is now accepted in Canada (not), Mexico, France, and the UK. In many cases, administration of a therapeutic course of Ibogaine is followed by intensive counseling therapy. Often more than one round of the drug is needed for lasting sobriety.

CAUTIONARY GUIDELINES

People with any kind of heart condition should not use ibogaine or iboga in any form.

People who have a bad reaction to the test dose should discontinue ibogaine treatment.

People who have any kind of liver conditions should not do ibogaine or iboga in any form.

People who are on any kind of medications which cause long QT syndrome for which ibogaine will make you temporarily sensitive should discontinue those meds unless necessary. If those meds are necessary they should not take iboga or ibogaine.

People who have found abnormalities on the EKG, stress test, or CBC/liver panel should not take ibogaine or iboga until if and when those conditions are resolved.

People on MAOIs, SSRIs, or any other psych meds should not take iboga or ibogaine until those meds have cleared the system, we recommend not stopping needed psych meds to take iboga. Some of these medications may potentiate iboga or lead to serotonin syndrome.

If you are currently addicted to benzodiazepines, barbiturates, GHB, GBL, 1,4-BDO, phenibut or alcohol, it is recommended you get through the acute withdrawals before taking ibogaine, as abruptly discontinuing those drugs may lead to seizures. Ibogaine will not eliminate the withdrawals from Gabaergic drugs although it can help with cravings. If you choose to ignore this recommendation then you must tell you treatment provider and your provider must have a Gabaergic drug on hand in case any seizures should happen.

 
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mr peabody

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Following are downloadable studies on the efficacy of ibogaine in the treatment of drug addiction.
 
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mr peabody

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Some are taking a new look at Naltrexone for meth addiction

by Andrea Dukakis | NPR | Nov 7 2019

Melinda McDowell had used drugs since she was a teenager. But she didn't try methamphetamine until one fateful night in 2017 after her mother died suddenly of a stroke. She went to a neighbor's house and he had crystal meth.

"I tried it and I was hooked from the first hit," McDowell says. "It was an explosion of the senses. It was the biggest high I'd ever experienced."

Afterward, McDowell says, that big high started getting more elusive. But she kept using the drug frequently, and it took a toll. She went from 240 pounds to 110. Eventually, she lost custody of her children, who were put in foster homes. McDowell started having hallucinations.

McDowell tried many times to stop using meth, but when she'd quit for a few days, she'd have severe panic attacks and begin to shake uncontrollably. One night, she remembers lying on her bathroom floor thinking that if she didn't get help, she'd die.

She heard about a woman named Nancy Beste who had recently opened the doors to a treatment center called Road to Recovery in Steamboat Springs, Colo., near where McDowell lived. McDowell says she begged Beste for help.

Beste, who's a certified addiction counselor and physician assistant, says McDowell's call came at a fortuitous time. She had just gotten back from a conference where she learned about research into what's called medication-assisted treatment, or MAT, for methamphetamine users. Some early studies indicate that naltrexone, the same medication used to treat alcohol addiction and opioids, can work for some people addicted to methamphetamine.

Beste gave McDowell a prescription for naltrexone and signed her up for individual and group therapy. McDowell says that three to four hours after she took the first pill, she felt better. After the second pill, the withdrawals lessened.

"The shaking started going away. I wasn't panicking. I could feel some relief," McDowell says. "I knew there was something different."

That was more than a year ago. McDowell is still sober today.

Nationally, methamphetamine use is soaring, especially in the West, and the treatment community is struggling to come up with the best ways to help.

Medication-assisted treatment with drugs such as methadone, buprenorphine and naltrexone are standard care for people addicted to opioids, but there are currently no FDA-approved medications for meth addiction. Still, a number of practitioners are beginning to experiment with treating meth use disorder with naltrexone — along with other medications like the antidepressant bupropion. And researchers are taking a look at naltrexone for meth, too, finding some promising initial results.

Dr. Keith Heinzerling, an addiction medicine specialist at the Pacific Neuroscience Institute in Santa Monica, Calif., says he prescribes naltrexone off-label, in combination with other medications, for methamphetamine addiction if patients are interested in trying it. And he believes, when combined with physician oversight and counseling, it can be an effective treatment.

"I think there's a great opportunity to try naltrexone," Heinzerling says. "There's actually a decent amount of evidence that it might help, and if I had a family member [addicted to meth], I would recommend they try it."

Heinzerling points to preliminary studies on naltrexone that support the idea that it might help reduce people's cravings for methamphetamine. Heinzerling believes naltrexone can have an anti-addiction effect for many drugs and potentially for other types of compulsive behaviors.

But, he cautions, much is still unknown, and more research on drugs like naltrexone for methamphetamine is needed.

Psychologist Lara Ray, a professor at the University of California, Los Angeles and head of the UCLA Addictions Lab, has done several studies on the effectiveness of naltrexone for methamphetamine addiction.

In one study, published in 2015 in Neuropsychopharmacology, volunteers who used methamphetamine were admitted for a four-day hospital stay. They were given either naltrexone or a placebo, and on the final day, an IV infusion of methamphetamine. The subjects were asked a series of questions, including how strong their cravings were.

"We found that naltrexone is better than a placebo at reducing the cravings for methamphetamine," Ray says.

A large, multisite study led by University of Texas Southwestern Medical Center looks at the effects of Vivitrol — a longer-acting, injected version of naltrexone — combined with bupropion. The study, a randomized, controlled trial, was recently completed and researchers are awaiting results.

Other researchers are trying to come up with new compounds to treat meth addiction. But Ray says there's a more immediate benefit to naltrexone and other drugs already available. She says that although the drugs lack FDA approval for use with methamphetamine addiction, practitioners can choose to prescribe them off-label.

"The good news is that these drugs have been on the market for a while, so we know what side effects there are and the cost-benefits," she says. "So, it's possible for providers to be making individual decisions for individual patients to educate [them] to consider off-label."

"Doctors should be aware that the literature is somewhat preliminary,"
she adds.

Ray says that if she had a family member with the disorder, she would want their treatment provider to experiment with drugs like naltrexone and Vivitrol "in combination with behavioral treatment."

Beste, who also treats patients with opioid addiction, says all of her patients have to do counseling in conjunction with medication-assisted treatment, and the goal is to eventually wean them off those medications. So far, Beste has tried naltrexone with about 16 patients who use meth. Of those, the drug appears to have helped reduce the cravings for methamphetamine in about half of them.

Melissa McDowell of Steamboat Springs says getting off meth has been arduous. But she credits naltrexone for helping her stay sober now for more than a year. It's an uphill battle. McDowell recently learned that the courts had denied her efforts to regain custody of her children.

But she's still pushing forward. McDowell is interviewing for jobs, and at some point, she wants to go to school so she can treat people like herself who want to break free of methamphetamine.

 
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mr peabody

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"I’ve seen things you people wouldn’t believe. Attack ships on fire off the shoulder of Orion.
I watched C-beams glitter in the dark near the Tannhäuser Gate. All those moments... will
be lost in time, like… tears in rain..."


Last month, dozens of ibogaine researchers, activists, and treatment providers gathered for a conference in Barcelona, where topics included safety and sustainable sourcing of ibogaine from Africa. Dr. Kenneth Alper was among the attendees who gave a presentation on the benefits of ibogaine to the Catalan Ministry of Health. The NYU prof believes ibogaine’s most likely path to prominence in the United States will be as a medication for meth addiction, for the simple reason that doctors and treatment providers have found that small daily—and thus drug-company-friendly—doses seem to work better for meth addiction than the mind-blowing “flood doses” used on opiate addicts.

Alper says "No one thought to try non-psychedelic quantities of ibogaine until recently." Ibogaine treatment providers tend to have been former ibogaine users, and most assumed that the introspection brought on by tripping was key to overcoming their addictions. “That’s just how it evolved,” he says, noting that the large doses do seem to work best for opiate detox. “You’re talking about a drug that has been used in less than 10,000 people in the world in terms of treatment. It’s not surprising that’s how it evolved.”

“The visions have some psychological content that is salient and meaningful,”
Alper adds. “On the other hand, there is no successful treatment for addiction that’s not interpreted as a spiritual transformation by the people who use it. It’s the G-word. It’s God. We as physicians don’t venture into that territory, but most people do.”

-Keegan Hamilton​
 
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mr peabody

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Ibogaine is an indole alkaloid isolated from the root bark of the African tree Tabernanthe Iboga, known to cause Long QT Syndrome (LQTS) — a dangerous condition that can lead to cardiac arrhythmia and death. But the risk is manageable. Dr. Bruno Chaves of Brazil has performed over 1200 treatments with ibogaine in hospital without a single adverse event. 62% of those treated by Bruno remain abstinent long term.

Dr. Chaves is currently accepting new patients for treatment in hospital in São Paulo. For more information, contact Dr. Chaves directly : [email protected]

 
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mr peabody

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Ibogaine, a drug to end all drugs

by Tristram Korten

On his 30th birthday, Patrick Kroupa was arrested for possession of heroin in Manhattan. “I turned 30 in the Tombs,” he says, referring to the notorious jail beneath the criminal courthouse. In the dank concrete cell, the magnitude of what he had lost overwhelmed him, and he resolved to quit.

It wouldn’t be his first effort. “I probably tried 18 to 20 medically supervised detox programs over the years, and maybe another 75 do-it-yourself attempts,” he says. Among the programs he tried: substitution therapies like methadone and buprenorphine, which replace heroin with a milder opiate; ultra-rapid detox, in which the addict is anesthetized to help with the withdrawal process; and a medical procedure using a TENS unit in which electrical currents stimulate the brain. But with each method, withdrawal was unavoidable, and Kroupa winces at the memories: “All of them just mean't pain, real pain.” And none of them worked.

Then he heard about a treatment center on the Caribbean island of St. Kitts. In October 1999 Kroupa rounded up the $10,000 necessary to enroll. When he first arrived, he was in the throes of withdrawal— cramping, cold sweats. “My spine felt like it was being crushed,” he recalls.

Kroupa’s treatment consisted of wearing a blindfold on a bed in a darkened room, listening to soothing music through earphones, and ingesting about 12 milligrams per kilogram of body weight of ibogaine hydrochloride in capsule form, all the while attached to a bank of machines that monitored his vital signs. “Within 30 to 35 minutes, this ball of heat went up my spine and the pain just let go,” Kroupa recounts. “Nothing has ever done that. It was like my habit was a bad dream, a mirage. And before I can focus on what just happened, I start tripping. Eight and a half hours later, they take the blinds off.”

Kroupa felt cured. He no longer craved heroin. But it didn’t change 16 years of behavioral patterns that led him to heroin in the first place. On his way back to the U.S., Kroupa’s plane stopped over in Puerto Rico, where he immediately copped a bag of heroin. A month later, strung out again, he returned to St. Kitts for another treatment. He’s been clean ever since.​
 
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mr peabody

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Australian therapist calls on the government to research ibogaine for treatment of meth addiction

by Harriet Tatham | ABC.net | 15 Feb 2016

An alternative drug therapy provider has written to the Australian government calling for research into a controversial alternative treatment to combat ice addiction.

Hypnotherapist Vanessa Gregory said the Government's National Innovation and Science Agenda should be used to fund a drug trial of iboga and its chemical derivative, ibogaine.

"Ibogaine is a ceremonial drug that's been used for centuries that comes from the bark of a shrub ... that is found in West Africa," she said.

"What appears to happen after taking ibogaine: over a three day period they go into an internal experience, they appear to do a life review, and they appear to come out with no actual interest or need for illicit substances afterwards."

Ibogaine resets opioid receptors that flare during addiction

Dr Stephen Bright, from the School of Psychology and Speech Pathology at Curtin University said research into ibogaine was needed to investigate the drug's potential.

"The interesting thing about ibogaine is that it tends to reset the opioid receptors sites so that the person, that may be heroin dependant or dependant on another opiate, doesn't really go through a withdrawal period and their tolerance to the drug is reduced as if they had never used before," Dr Bright said.

He said the potential benefit of ibogaine stems from its ability to inspire a period of self-reflection.

"An integral component of ibogaine is not just the fact that it resets the opiate receptor sites, but the way in which it forces the person to reflect on how their drug use has impacted on their family and their community," he said.

Dr Bright said, while there have been reports of deaths as a result of taking ibogaine, these interactions occurred in a non-clinical setting.

"The problem is that is has an impact on the cardiovascular system," he said.

Despite this, Dr Bright said the benefits outweigh the potential risk.

"If screening is conducted and we determine that the person doesn't have any pre-existing cardiovascular disorders, then it's unlikely to have a risk that would outweigh the benefit of potentially trialing it."

Government funding needed for research

"In the 60s, experimentation with iboga and ibogaine began in the US as a potential treatment for opiate addiction and it continues to be used in some countries like Mexico and Canada, where they administer the actual chemical contained in the plant in a controlled clinical setting."

But Dr Bright said there have not yet been any randomised trials of the drug, so research was needed to understand it.

"Ibogaine is actually a Schedule 4 drug in Australia, so it can be prescribed by a doctor," he said. "All that research would require is for somebody to apply for a research grant to conduct a randomized control trial of the trial, engage with a university pharmacy to manufacture the drug, and involve a GP who would be able to prescribe the drug as part of the therapy that's being provided."

Dr Bright said research in an Australian context would be quite easy, but the current barrier is the inability for drug companies to patent the plant.

"Because it comes from a plant, pharmaceutical companies don't have a vested interest in pursuing the effectiveness of this drug because they're unable to make profits from the use of this drug," he said, "the result being that the only research that's like to happen is that which is Government-funded."

Like Ms Gregory, Dr Bright has called on the Federal Government to investigate ibogaine as a potential drug treatment.

"There's an opportunity here for Government funding to investigate a treatment that isn't going to be investigated otherwise."

http://www.abc.net.au/news/2016-02-16/sunshine-coast-alt-therapist-pushes-for-iboga-trials/7173236
 
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mr peabody

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My son had ibogaine treatment for his meth addiction, and he has not taken any drugs since. He is a completely different boy with a very different outlook on life. This was the only treatment that worked, and I know if it wasn't for Ibogaine I would have buried him as he did try to take his life many times. He is a success story for Ibogaine.

My son and I are involved with a group of 20 people here that had Ibogaine treatment for their drug addiction, and not one has gone back to drugs or had any problems with the treatment. Some of them had been to rehab quite few times and still couldn't kick their habit until they had Ibogaine. One of the girls is now married with a child and living a life without drugs for 5 years now. Ibogaine is a prescription medicine here and has to be administered by a doctor in a nice clean clinic, not some dirty hotel room, and we don't call it a miracle drug. It is just a treatment that should be available to addicts that want to give up and can't do it with other treatments. Ibogaine here is a herbal product not a drug. Every single person has different experiences when they have Ibogaine so unless you or anyone else has tried it you can't really speak about it like we can. And another thing you don't have to have a drug problem to take it. We've had doctors, psychiatrists and herbalists try Ibogaine and they have all been impressed. And it is wonderful to finally get my son back and see the light in his eyes, like all the other ex-addicts here.

I am from New Zealand. I am Maori and we use the bush and forest to heal our sick ones. That is why I believe so much in Ibogaine and I have seen so many people successfully get off drugs using this treatment. And yes, I do agree that a doctor has to be involved and all the tests done before hand. We do not call it a miracle treatment or promise that everyone will become drug free, because it is still up to the person if they want to become drug free. Ibogaine gives them a 3 to 6 months chance after it has cleaned their insides to start working on their problems as to why they went down that track in the first place. Addicts can work on their problems with help as Ibogaine stops the craving for drugs for months. This is a very important part of the treatment once they have been cleaned.​

-very thankful mother
 
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mr peabody

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"What's it gonna take?"

Treating meth addiction with ibogaine

Methamphetamine is a poison that acts as a stimulant but then begins to systematically destroy the body. Meth releases high levels of dopamine when ingested and then blocks the normal flow of dopamine in the absence of the drug. This involves the reward system that regulates pleasure, happiness, motivation, energy, and functional ability. Meth changes the way the brain functions; and the brain becomes dependent on the drug to survive. Prolonged meth abuse brings with it serious health conditions including memory loss, aggression, psychotic behavior and potential heart and brain damage depleting the bodys resources. The physical effects start to deteriorate the body from the inside out, creating a devastating dependence that can only be relieved by taking more of the drug.

Ibogaine has a totally unique way of resetting or “interrupting” dopamine uptake pathways. These pathways are located in the brain’s pleasure and reward centers, which is why they are so connected with addiction. This ability to reset these crucial pathways—a singularly impressive achievement—is something no other drug, treatment, or substance has ever been shown to do. Patients that have used ibogaine for treating meth addiction report a complete absence of physical symptoms once treatment is over.

Ibogaine helps the person look deeply into his / her past to find the root problem of their addiction. Treatment with ibogaine induces visions which are dream-like even though the patient is awake. During these visions, patients are able to re-experience key life events in instructive ways, and see how they contributed to their addiction. Ibogaine treatment can provide patients with a significant shift of perspective. Ibogaine treatment is most effective when supported by a strong plan for re-entering life, including counseling, therapy and aftercare. The best way to get off methamphetamine is to make a complete break—but in a safe, medically supported setting.

Though ibogaine has a proven track record of success in treating addiction, it is vilified in the US and runs counter to the monetary interests of Big Pharma companies. The mechanism of action by which ibogaine works is still not fully understood, despite decades of research and hundreds of reports published in peer-reviewed medical journals demonstrating ibogaine’s ability to interrupt drug dependence. But the facts are clear: ibogaine treatment for methamphetamine addiction really works.​
 
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mr peabody

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Ibogaine and meth addiction

Methamphetamine changes the way the brain functions and the negative effects of the drug are often noticed in a very short period of time. When the drug begins to wear off a person will notice increased irritability, anger and feelings of negativity. Because it blocks the flow of dopamine it is impossible to feel good after the meth is gone from ones system. With increased use meth causes neurotoxicity in the brain and central nervous system.

Meth affects the user both physically and psychologically, and the changes are dramatic. Physically, meth destroys the body from the inside out. It is extremely dangerous to vital organ function and causes ones appearance to change drastically for the worse. Psychologically, the drug can cause a decreased sense of well-being, depression, feelings of inadequacy and guilt, and with continued use can lead to amphetamine psychosis.

Ibogaine works by resetting the neurotransmitters in the brain. It is also a psycho-spiritual tool that helps the patient look deeply into their past to find the root problem of their addiction. People with addictions are usually victims of deep emotional traumas and seek to find an escape of this through their drug of choice. Ibogaine takes the patient on a deep introspective psychological journey that allows them to forgive others that have hurt them as well as forgive themselves for things theyve done that they regret and continue to carry with them.

Treatment with ibogaine induces visions which are dream-like even though the patient is awake. During these visions, patients are able to re-experience key life events in instructive ways, and see how they contributed to their addiction. They can also confront negative emotions including the fears that fuel the addiction pattern. Ibogaine treatment can provide patients with a significant shift of perspective.

This ibogaine healing process occurs in two phases - a visionary phase, and an introspective phase. The visionary phase produces a dream-like altered state of consciousness where past emotional traumas and memories can be processed. Treatment with ibogaine induces visions which are dream-like even though the patient is awake. During these visions, addicts are able to re-experience key life events in instructive ways, and see how they contributed to their addiction. The introspective phase enables addicts to conquer their fears, and the negative emotions caused by their past traumas. At the end of the 36 hour treatment, patients are left with a refreshing outlook on life and all of the possibilities it can hold.​
 
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Naltrexone implants a possible solution to Australia's meth epidemic

by Bronwyn Herbert | ABC.net.au | 13 Oct 2015

More than 300 methamphetamine addicts a year are turning to naltrexone implants at a Perth clinic in a bid to fight their drug addiction.

Johnny Mitchell, 28, has been a meth addict for more than a decade.

"In the last two years I've lost the house, my partner and my son," he told ABC.

Mr Mitchell was a FIFO construction worker on a West Australian mining site.

At work he stayed off the drugs, but the moment he was back in Perth he binged, spending more than $500 a day on his habit.

Mr Mitchell is desperate to beat his addiction and is getting an implant of naltrexone to cut his craving.

"And we're seeing 70 per cent of them free of amphetamines 12 weeks later, due to family, counseling, the implants and the combination of these things together," said Dr George O'Neil.

He is one of more than 300 ice addicts who receive the implants each year at the Fresh Start clinic in Perth, run by Dr George O'Neil.

"With amphetamine addicts, it just isn't as enjoyable as it used to be and so the reward is reduced," said Dr O'Neil.

"By reducing the reward it becomes much easier to give up the drug dependence."

Dr O'Neil pioneered the use of the slow release implants for heroin users about 15 years ago, and claims they can also effectively treat people addicted to crystal methamphetamine.

"We noticed 10 or 14 years ago that when we looked at the urines of the opiate addicts, many of them were using amphetamines, and they stopped their amphetamines as well as their opiates," he said.

"The work here in Perth is just very practical work treating probably 300 people coming off the street with high-dose amphetamines, who've been on them for 10 or 15 years, and who just want to stop.

"And we're seeing 70 per cent of them free of amphetamines 12 weeks later, due to family, counseling and the implants, a combination of these things together."


However, Dr O'Neil's techniques are expensive, controversial and have not been independently evaluated.

Stimulant drugs consultant, Associate Professor Nicole Lee, said the jury was still out.

"Naltrexone's been trialed three or four times for meth addicts and it's not really been shown to be particularly effective," she said.

"It's one of the promising interventions, but it's not effective enough for enough people to be widely available."

In 2012 a Sydney coroner found that three patients being treated for heroin dependence died after having naltrexone implants at a Sydney detox clinic.

Dr O'Neil believes that was the result of bad practices.

"The bad reputation comes from people who haven't made the implants properly, done tablets properly or run a treatment service properly," he said.

"And it's interesting that in Western Australia, the medical profession has been very in favor of naltrexone, and in the eastern states nobody's really got a service up and running properly."

Professor Gary Hulse is an addiction specialist at the University of WA and believes naltrexone research should be fast tracked.

"The Government needs to be more proactive," he said.

"When we had a flu epidemic, there were big pushes to find the drugs for treatment, and push that forward, to look at safety and to get them out to the community."

http://www.abc.net.au/news/2015-10-13/naltrexone-implants-possible-answer-to-ice-addiction/6851530

 
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Methamphetamine

Methamphetamine is a dangerous and addictive drug that releases dopamine in the body when ingested. People use methamphetamine for the increased sense of pleasure it provides through its release of dopamine that cause neurotransmitters in the brain to release feelings of pleasure, happiness, increased self-esteem, and energy.

When use is discontinued meth blocks the normal flow of dopamine that is naturally present in the brain. Meth makes a person feel good temporarily, and a feeling of increased overall well-being is usually noticed very quickly after taking the drug. A meth high can last more than eight hours, one reason the drug has become so popular and continues to enslave more people every day.

Meth changes the way the brain functions: the negative effects of the drug are often noticed in a very short period of time. When the drug begins to wear off a person will notice increased irritability, anger, and overall feelings of negativity. Because it blocks the flow of dopamine, it is impossible to feel good after the meth is gone from one’s system. With increased use, meth causes neurotoxicity in the brain and central nervous system.

Meth affects the user both physically and psychologically, and the changes are dramatic. Meth destroys the body from the inside out. It is dangerous to vital organ function and causes one’s appearance to change drastically. The drug can cause feelings of inadequacy, and with continued use can lead to amphetamine psychosis.

Traditional treatments for meth addiction usually involve some kind of twelve step program or something similar with success in treating the addiction between just one and seven percent. With such a low percentage of success, traditional treatments for methamphetamine addiction usually last 3-6 months but can take up to a year.

Treatment of meth addiction with Ibogaine is entirely different. With a 60-80 percent success rate in treating addictions, treatment with Ibogaine is done in less than a week and is administered in one 36 hour treatment. This psycho-spiritual treatment works in ending both the physical and psychological addiction of meth by treating both of these issues at once.

Physically Ibogaine works to relieve symptoms of withdrawal such as sweating, itchy skin, shakes, and twitches that users of meth often feel after the drug has worn off. Patients that have used Ibogaine for the treating meth addiction have reported a complete absence of the physical symptoms once treatment is over.

Ibogaine works by resetting the neurotransmitters in the brain. It also works as a psycho-spiritual tool that helps the patient look deeply into their past to find the root problem of their addiction. People with addictions usually are victims of deep emotional traumas and seek to find an escape of this through their drug of choice. Ibogaine takes the patient on a deep introspective psychological journey that allows them to forgive others that have hurt them as well as forgive themselves for things they’ve done that they regret and continue to carry with them.

This healing process is broken down into two separate phases starting first with visionary psychedelics and then moving to an introspective phase. The visionary stage lasts between four to six hours and produces a dream-like altered state of consciousness where past emotional traumas and memories can be processed. The second stage of Ibogaine which is introspective of the first allows addicts to conquer their fears and negative emotions that are caused from their past traumas.

At the end of the 36 hour treatment session patients are left with a refreshing look on life. Treatment with Ibogaine offers addicts a new found outlook on life and all the possibilities it can hold. By releasing old wounds that are embedded deeply in an addict’s psyche, Ibogaine allows for complete transformation at a deep psychological level.

http://www.ibogaineuniversity.com/me...ine-addiction/
 
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Iboga treatment for meth addiction

Iboga helps eliminate both the physical and mental addiction that keeps meth addicts in their chains of addiction. Iboga helps to eliminate physical withdrawal symptoms such as the sweats, itchy skin, shakes, and twitches that meth users experience when the drug has worn off. It also relieves psychological addiction to the drug by taking the user on an introspective journey to identify the reasons one chose to do meth in the first place.

Meth is an extremely addictive stimulant that is very long lasting compared to many street drugs. It causes neurotoxicity in the brain and central nervous system and can lead to heart failure and eventually death. Meth releases high levels of dopamine and then blocks the normal flow of dopamine in the absence of the drug. These neurotransmitters involve the reward system which regulates pleasure, happiness, motivation, energy, and functional ability.

People use meth to feel better; it seems to increase self-esteem and libido and help with concentration, focus, alertness, and energy. But the effects are devastating in a very short period of time. The psychological effects of meth extend to amphetamine psychosis. The physical effects rapidly deteriorate the body, from the inside out.

Typical statistics quoted for success at standard methamphetamine rehabilitation centers using either the twelve step program or a variation of it, or some other non-iboga method of drug treatment, range from 1% to 7%, or less.

Iboga has an 80%-90%% rate of success for methamphetamine addiction. In addition to this high rate of treatment success, it takes as little as one week with one thirty-six hour treatment, for treatment with iboga to help end meth addiction.

Addiction to meth is normally two addictions, physical and psychological. The reason iboga is so effective is because it addresses both. Users often report a complete elimination of physical craving and an absence of the symptoms of physical withdrawal such as sweating and tremors following treatment.

Iboga's psycho-spiritual effects help users deal with the underlying emotional traumas they are seeking to escape. Iboga users are enabled to see the truth about their past and facilitated in bestowing forgiveness to others, but most importantly to themselves. As a result they are able to envision their future, free from the guilt that enslaved them.
 
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"All those moments will be lost in time... like tears in rain..."

Daily low dosing iboga

Dr. Kenneth Alper was among the attendees who gave a presentation on the benefits of ibogaine to the Catalan Ministry of Health. He believes that ibogaine's most likely path to prominence in the U.S. will be as a medication for meth addiction, for the simple reason that doctors and treatment providers have found that small daily doses seem to work better for meth addiction than the mind-blowing "flood doses" used on opiate addicts. Alper says no one thought to try non-psychedelic quantities of ibogaine until recently...

http://archive.seattleweekly.com/hom...129/story.html

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Ibogaine has also been given in regimens of small daily doses of 25 to 300 mgs/day and in small daily doses where the dose is increased on a daily basis until the desired interruption of drug dependence is accomplished. These low dose regimens can be traced back some decades to the work of Leo Zeff who in the case of a single patient provided ibogaine on an "as needed" basis via nasal administration to a cocaine dependent patient to substitute for his cocaine use. Lines of ibogaine were somewhat equivalent to lines of cocaine and the patient ceased cocaine use after a week of this daily self-regulated ibogaine regimen. Additionally, reports from Canadian sources indicate multi-week low dose ibogaine therapy 20 mg/day following a therapeutic dose of ibogaine in the treatment of cocaine dependence. Further, reports throughout the ibogaine provider community indicate the use of multiple dosing of varying strength doses over varying time periods in the treatment of opioid dependence. As with all determinations in medicine, decisions must be taken based on observations of the patient, knowledge of the disorder(s) and the medication(s) used.

https://truthtalk13.wordpress.com/20...gaine-therapy/

-----

For those flooding

Best to have new routines in place before the session. It really isn't will power as much as practical plans for dealing with life, and the belief that life can change. All that ibogaine can guarantee is to interrupt the addiction. The more one plans how to handle the stressors, the better the chances of succeeding at whatever goal one has.

I work with people to encourage the best pre and post care possible. Even for those who go back to using, I still see benefit. Like shame and guilt reduction, resolution of issues caused by early trauma, etc. It is not often mentioned, but some require 2-3 sessions. Ibogaine seems to target the most pressing issues first. With a junkie that would be the addiction. Maybe next time, deeper delving into emotional wounds which could have caused using in the first place. I myself have had one flood only, and it worked.

BOOSTERS. No-one should be sent home from a session without some boosters. These are smaller doses of the medicine, safe to take at home. Most benefit from one at 30 days.

-lol_Taco​
 
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Ibogaine and methamphetamine

Last month, dozens of ibogaine researchers, activists, and treatment providers gathered for a conference in Barcelona, where topics included safety and sustainable sourcing of ibogaine from Africa. Dr. Kenneth Alper was among the attendees who gave a presentation on the benefits of ibogaine to the Catalan Ministry of Health. The NYU prof believes ibogaine’s most likely path to prominence in the United States will be as a medication for meth addiction for the simple reason that doctors and treatment providers have found that small daily doses seem to work better for meth addiction than the mind-blowing “flood doses” used on opiate addicts.

"No one thought to try sub-psychedelic quantities of ibogaine until recently," says Alper.

Clare Wilkins, a facilitator of over 700 ibogaine treatments, has been experimenting with small daily doses of ibogaine for people with heart conditions or other health problems that make flood dosing unadvisable. "The non-psychedelic regimen seems very successful," she says.

-Keegan Hamilton

-----

Try small daily doses of 25-300 mg/day, where the dose is gradually increased each day until it is felt to have been effective for eliminating WDs/cravings. Iboga accumulates in the body. It remains in the body for more than 4 weeks. This means that all the drops you take in a 5-week period will accumulate and remain in your body until they slowly wear off. If the dose you take exceeds 10 drops a day, physical and psychological effects effects can occur. Be aware of that some people respond highly sensitively to a few drops only. It's important to listen to the signs of your body at all times and adjust your dosage accordingly. It's better not to take the iboga tincture before going to sleep. The plant gives you energy and might cause insomnia.

Whilst treating yourself with iboga, it is advisable to keep stimulants such as coffee to a minimum, as well as tobacco or certain herbs. Your receptors will become very sensitive and you may have an unexpectedly strong reaction to them. It is strongly discouraged to combine iboga with other psychedelics. Iboga should never be combined with anti-depressant medication such as SSRI's. Such a combination would be very dangerous.


-ed​
 
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Using ibogaine for meth detox

I was a methamphetamine addict for 17 years, and after many programs, and medications for bi-polar or psychotic tendencies, Ibogaine was the only thing that ever removed the imprint of stimulants from my life, and the mental fractures diagnosed by psychologists. Stimulants are very different than other drugs, causing an entirely different type of damage requiring a completely different approach to healing the body, especially the mind.

Methamphetamine probably does more damage to the brain than any other substance. I have seen permanent damage in others.

Recovery from methamphetamine addiction starts with three days off meth. Ibogaine is a central nervous system stimulant, and you want to start feeling better before proceeding with the treatment. By the 3rd day cravings to use become extremely intense. Normally ibogaine is given in 1/4 doses to help ease those cravings. This helps people stay comfortable and get through those initial difficult days coming off meth. This helps people to eat and rest well, while relieving anxiety and the compulsion to use. This stabilizes and enables you to feel well enough to permit the body's return to strength. By the time you do the flood session, you already have the real healing properties of the ibogaine metabolizing.

It takes much longer for the brain to heal from stimulant use than from opiate dependency. Meth really "amps up" the release of dopamine over and over, so the ability to feel good naturally has been gone for years. This is something that I noticed right away; I did not have to go through several months of waiting to have energy and a clear minded ambition, along with other basic functions. This is why relapse was so predominant. You just get tired of waiting to feel better, and right away, when you use, it comes back. So it's a tricky drug and very deeply embedded in the psych. It's almost like there are two kinds of addictions—dopamine vs endorphins. Both are vital neurotransmitters for feeling well.

I might not have understood stimulant treatment if I hadn't had the experience myself. I tried every kind of program, psych medications, jails and meetings, rehabs, some for 6 months, long term sober living, everything I could do in earnest attempts to work this out, resulting in a year or two off drugs under very confined life style, feeling vulnerable, waiting for it to come back over and over. Very frustrating. This is why I have spent the last eleven years learning, documenting and sharing my information with various ibogaine providers. Ibogaine actually fixes the mind and body.

Crack and cocaine have properties similar to methamphetamine and the treatments are similar because they cannot be in the system along with ibogaine. People have had seizures and cardiac arrest from the combination of ibogaine and other stimulants. I have heard of close calls, and even some deaths directly related to mixing ibogaine with stimulants. Unlike opiates, ibogaine has zero tolerance for stimulants in the system.

Screening needs to be done carefully because ibogaine is a stimulant and can trigger some of these conditions. The mind must be clear in preparation so that confusion doesn't interfere with the treatment. The mind can only handle so much before undesired side effects and a break-down of the psych may occur. This is also why treatment for stimulants requires multiple dosing along with a thorough evaluation of someone's mental stability. Stimulants invite so many other conditions on top of the dependency, one must work hard to avoid complications.

People choosing to use ibogaine for meth or crack must have a set of questions for any provider to ensure they receive the treatment they need. Ibogaine is not a "one size fits all treatment," and some providers have not worked with stimulants very often. I always suggest getting as much information as possible about how they do the treatment and what their personal and clinical experience is.

Stimulant users seem to purge more than opiate users. They also seem to struggle in "letting go" to the ibogaine, another reason for the introductory doses. It helps people to relax and feel better. In treating stimulant use it's all about control. Everyone is different and has different experiences in their past, and it's the provider's job to see where you're "at" in order to assist in making it a comfortable and effective treatment.

-anon​
 
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Methamphetamine is known to prolong the QT interval even though it does not interact with the hERG cardiac channel, as well as to affect CYP2D6 metabolism. Ibogaine has been shown to potentiate (increase) the effects of methamphetamine by sensitizing receptors that mediate its effects.

It is recommended that patients cease consumption of methamphetamine for at least five days prior to administration of ibogaine.

https://www.ibogainealliance.org/guidelines/stimulants/

-----

The dose for a flood dose is around 19mg/kg of body weight. So if you weigh, say, 60kg, then you'd want about 1140mg. it's best divided into 3 doses, start with 100mg, then an hour later take the majority of the rest and then an hour later take the rest. You have to get your heart checked out first because ibogaine has killed people due to heart problems. Also, you absolutely MUST have supervision the whole time to make sure you're okay and that you don't do something stupid. For me, ibogaine lasted 3 days before I was able to take care of myself again. I had no idea whether I was awake or asleep during it, I wasn't watched anymore on the third day and I thought I was fine but I was actually dreaming while I was awake and I ended up writing a terrible email to my boss and I may have also driven my car but I'm not sure. You really need to understand what you're getting yourself into with ibogaine.

-Xorkoth

-----

I am an addict who was cured with Ibogaine. I am 2 years off crystal meth. I’m telling you this from the deepest part of my heart. Ibogaine is intense. You are sick, you vomit, you feel like you're dying, you must look all your wrongs in the face. It's hard. I peed myself it was so overwhelming. BUT, it does work. When I went to do ibogaine I was living on the street, 98 lbs at 5’5 and dealing meth. I had nothing and nobody. My whole family had given up on me. But with the help of ibogaine, my mother and I are close again.

My heart aches that there are people out there still suffering, who don't even know the cure is here.

-TheKey​
 
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High doses of CBD found to reduce meth consumption

by Eric Dolan | PsyPost | 15 Nov 2018

A new study in the Journal of Psychopharmacology provides evidence that CBD, a component of cannabis, can inhibit the motivation to consume methamphetamine.

The preliminary findings suggest that the substance could be useful in fighting addiction to methamphetamine, which has become one of the most common drugs of abuse around the world.

“One focus of my laboratory is to understand the neurobiology of methamphetamine addiction so that we can discover effective treatments to reduce this burden on our society. Cannabinoids are showing promise as medications for a number of mental health disorders and symptoms in preclinical models, including drug addiction and relapse for opiates and psychostimulants,” said study author Jennifer Cornish of Macquarie University.

“Methamphetamine is a psychostimulant, however, the effect of CBD had not yet been investigated for reducing reward or relapse in rats experienced at lever pressing for intravenous methamphetamine infusions. As it is known that CBD acts on a number of targets in the brain that may impact on the pharmacology of methamphetamine use, this study was a logical next step for discovering more about methamphetamine addiction and the effects of CBD treatment.”

The researchers found that treatment with 80 mg/kg of CBD — but not smaller doses of 40 mg/kg or 20 mg/kg — reduced the motivation to consume methamphetamine in rats trained to self-administer the addictive stimulant.

But CBD did not impact the motivation to consume sucrose, suggesting the effects are somewhat targeted rather than affecting reward mechanisms in general.

“Medicinal cannabis covers a broad range of chemicals that are found in the cannabis (marijuana) plant, many of these are not psychoactive (unlike delta-9-tetrahydrocannabinol, the main psychoactive component of marijuana), and each may have a medical application — yet to be discovered,” Cornish told PsyPost.

“This study has shown that high doses of CBD can act to reduce methamphetamine consumption and also relapse to taking methamphetamine. More other studies need to be done prior to the use of CBD in human population of methamphetamine addicts – but this study is a first step for understanding the potential use of CBD treatment in methamphetamine addiction.”

The study — like all research — includes some limitations.

“The major caveats here are that the study is conducted in rodents, and uses high doses of CBD. However, there is substantial overlap between the neurobiology of rats and humans, and pre-clinical studies such as this provide important information on the potential use of new chemicals in human disorders,” Cornish explained.

“From this data set we are able to design further experiments that not only discover the effectiveness of CBD as a therapy for methamphetamine addiction, but also the mechanisms by which CBD can reduce methamphetamine intake. By understanding these mechanisms we can inform the discovery of more targeted therapies that would work like CBD, yet with smaller therapeutic doses.”

“There is so much more to discover with over 400 chemicals in the cannabis plant, including over 70 cannabinoids. The potential therapeutic benefits of these are great and should be explored to develop targeted therapies for mental health (or other) disorders,”
Cornish added.

https://www.psypost.org/2018/11/stu...-methamphetamine-consumption-in-rodents-52602
 
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'Methadone for meth' on the horizon*

FILTER | Dec 17 2019

Public health response to opioid use disorders in the United States is, in part, made possible by the availability of methadone and buprenorphine. But as methamphetamine-involved deaths rise amid increasing fentanyl adulteration of street supplies, the lack of a substitution medication for meth (although medications like Adderall are very similar) has left responders empty-handed.

One anti-depressant could be the key to ending the scarcity of meth use disorder treatments, San Francisco researchers found in a clinic trial published in JAMA Psychiatry on December 11. The medication mirtazapine was shown to reduce meth use and accompanying risky sexual behaviors over the course of six months among gay men and transgender women. The researchers suggest that it could aid in quelling cravings and withdrawal symptoms.

Compared to the placebo group in the trial, the urine of those taking mirtazapine decreasingly tested positive for meth over time, and they had fewer sexual partners and fewer experiences of condom-less anal sex with a partner who had a different HIV status.

These “promising” results, as one prominent harm reduction advocate tweeted, were even found despite participants displaying “suboptimal medication adherence.” (Although not the same, adherence to antiretroviral therapy for HIV is also shaky among people who use meth.)

Regardless of these obstacles and limitations, mirtazapine could provide people with more options for managing their meth use. “Although the impact of mirtazapine was modest, these results provide a sign of real hope for people who want to reduce or stop methamphetamine use,” Phillip O. Coffin, MD, of the San Francisco Department of Public Health, told Healio Psychiatry. “Mirtazapine, probably in combination with behavioral interventions, would be expected to help many people and opens the doors to future medication development.”

Other existing medications, like the opioid antagonist naltrexone, have been suggested as possibilities for meth use disorder treatment.

 
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Ibogaine and meth addiction

Many law enforcement officials say the only way off methamphetamine is death or prison. The drug is reputed to be more addictive than crack cocaine. Yet this week we talked to a Traverse City native who was severely addicted to methamphetamine for 2 years, but has been clean for 90 days. Before recovery, his addiction cost him 2 marriages, his home, two businesses, most of his family relationships and his health. He credits his success to ibogaine, a psychedelic from the root of a shrub found in West Africa.

NE: Tell me a little about yourself.

A: I just turned 40. I turned 40 in the treatment center in Miami, Florida. To be honest, I'm so glad I was there. I grew up in Northern Michigan. I have fond memories of school and I spent a quarter at MSU and flunked out. And then I got an opportunity to move to the West Coast. I was a chef and went to one of the best culinary schools in Europe, and I've run a restaurant and two very successful catering companies. But my drug addiction brought them both down. I was forced out of my catering company because I wasn't performing. It's been one tragedy after another, but I'm in a great place today. And I know I will continue on this path. There is nothing left to lose. I have such a firm grip on what life's about, I can't say I'm fearless, but I know I've seen the worst.

NE: How did you ever get addicted to meth?

A: The crazy story is I went to a treatment facility for alcohol in 2002 and my wife at the time sold my business to my business partner for a dollar because she had power of attorney and packed up her stuff and split. So the day I got out of the treatment center, there was a big moving van in front of my house. I did have a nice house. I was up and coming, I had been up and coming, I've been written up in the newspaper several times for good things.

She couldn't deal with the intensity of my business. Owning your own catering business is very stressful. I'm a go-getter and not afraid to take risks. We took a few hits, with 9-11 and opening a restaurant. There were times I thought I'd never be poor again, and then I was. She wasn't hip to the business climate. She got scared when I was in treatment. My business partner, who didn't have our best interests in mind, convinced her to sell my interest so that there wouldn't be a debt load.

NE: Tell me what happened at the treatment center?

A: In the treatment center you learn all sorts of stuff, you learn all about other drugs, and I found out about crystal meth. When my wife sold my first business and then with her leaving, I was just devastated. I was so attached to my business. I thought it was everything I was. Instead of coming out of the treatment center clean, I immediately started drinking. Then it turned itself into finding drugs, and then the crystal meth became available. I was looking for cocaine, but the dealer guy sold me crystal meth. He told me it's cheaper and lasts longer.

NE: But didn't you know how addictive it was?

A: I didn't know how addictive it was, no. I was kind of depressed, seriously depressed, and didn't care too much about wanting to live. I thought, who cares? This is making me feel better. I didn't want to feel the pain and I didn't know how to get out of the pain, other than to use drugs. I became disinterested in alcohol and cocaine and I was solely going with the crystal meth. I started a second catering company that was competing with my old one. I still had my old reputation. So I had more investors and business partners willing and able to get going. It was very successful, but the crystal meth took over and it became really clear to my business partners that I wasn't performing.

NE: But doesn't meth make you more productive?

A: It does for awhile. I catered for the TV show Extreme Home Makeover. It was 10-day event; 24 hours a day, and I pretty much did it all. We were serving 500 meals a day for 10 days straight. I pretty much went the whole 10 days and slept two hours a day. I was highly productive, highly productive.

NE: Were you grouchy?

A: Only when I was out of the drug. The thing about crystal meth is, I was on it for two years straight with only six days of not using. There are drugs similar to meth, that help people with ADD and ADHD, and I've been diagnosed with ADHD. So finding crystal meth kind of made me feel like I was normal. I had all this creative energy going on in my head so that a lot of times it was hard to focus. In a strange way, it allowed me to bring things together and focus. It makes you feel like you're large and in charge. It's crazy. It increases libido by 500%, but it can get out of control.

NE: Tell me about the six days you didn't use meth.

A: One was where my drug dealer got deported to Mexico, and the other time, I didn't have enough money to get it together. It was a very tough three days. I was still working, and I had to keep it together. It's challenging. Every cell of your body is craving what you don't have - it's a pain you can't even describe. And all I wanted to do was sleep. You can't keep your eyes open no matter what. It was scary when I caught myself falling asleep while I was driving.

NE: Was it expensive?

A: Not as expensive as cocaine, I guess. My habit was $50 to $100 a day. When I started, it was much less, $25 a day. I started to sell cocaine to keep up with the meth. I tried to sell meth, but I couldn't keep it around to sell. I was getting meth for $330 for a quarter ounce, which is a pretty good price. I tried to buy enough for other people, but I just got in the way.

NE: Who were your fellow smokers?

A: I was leading this weird double life. I would hang out with a bunch of hardcore lowlife drug users -- I put myself in that category as well -- and I also had this peer group that I had from my culinary career who had no idea what I was doing. Those worlds never crossed in the 2 years I was using meth. It's a not very glamorous drug. I was somewhat ashamed. Had I been a big-time coke junkie, who knows?

NE: Did your skin break out? Did you lose a lot of weight?

A: My teeth didn't fall out, never got meth mouth or acne and my blood pressure was good. But I went from 220 to 140 pounds when I checked into the treatment center in Miami. I was very near death, completely malnourished skin and bones. I had stopped exercising; I stopped everything except smoking crystal meth. And I had a new baby on the way. I used right up until after she was born, and then things rapidly fell apart after she was born. It was the universe's way of getting me straight.

NE: So how did it all come down?

A: My partners kicked me out of the business right before the baby was born. They were forcing me out, and I made a fatal error and got mad, F--- you, I'm out of here. You guys suck! They were very intelligent -- they used the old business school ploy to force me out by taking a lot of my creative control away, which is my thing, and I became an employee and I said, Forget this! I'm a highly creative individual, and that's why my companies have done so well. I often find that drug addicts are highly creative and highly intelligent. When I wasn't using, my life was great. The moment I started using, it disintegrated in just two years. It just devastates people faster than anything else.

My girlfriend knew something was up. She was pregnant at the time with my daughter and she also has three other children - it's not as out of the trailer park as it sounds. God bless her, she loved me so much, she didn't want the truth to be what it was. Denial was a good word in that situation. My brother intervened, he is savvy. He told her and said we have to get him some help. As soon as she got hip to it, she pretty much said, you gotta go and get help. At first, I was convinced I had it under control, except I fell from grace.

I sensed an intervention coming on and I told them not to, I didn't want to go through another intervention. That first treatment center was a horrible, horrible experience. I didn't get a lot out of it. They beat you down, make you feel unworthy, an addict, and you'll always be that way unless you do it their way. I thought, forget it. I'll kill myself because I don't want to do this. I didn't want to live without the drug. I just didn't want to feel the pain of being human. I had not learned how to cope as a child. Instead I would just escape. I had finally found the perfect escape. Most addicts don't have the coping skills that other people who don't use drugs regularly have. So we are these crippled adolescents in 40-year-old bodies who stick their heads in the sand.

My brother was very concerned for my life, and he's a spiritual guy, a practicing Buddhist and an alternative thinker. Certain kinds of experiences with drugs can take you back to yourself, before you poisoned your body, to a time of innocence. The whole experience can serve as a reset button. I don't think that drugs and alcohol are necessarily bad, although some people are naturally inclined to be addicts. They can be great teachers, but once we start abusing something, no matter what it is, physically and spiritually it abuses us back. You have to treat these plant masters as if they're spiritual entities.

My brother discovered a psychedelic called ibogaine, an anti-addiction drug which comes from the eboga plant in Africa. He did a lot of research, and thought it was something worth trying. I said, F--- you, I'm not interested, and continued using. I finally submitted -- I wanted to raise my daughter, and I felt I still had something to live for.

NE: But isn't ibogaine banned in the United States? Where did you go for treatment?

A: I went through recovery in Miami through the Holistic Addiction Treatment Center and they have a loose relationship with Dr. Mash (a professor of neurology at the University of Miami and a leading proponent of the drug). The drug was administered in Cancun Mexico and I was there for five or six days.

NE: Tell me what your treatment was like.

A: I was prepped for two days in Cancun and then at 10 a.m. on the morning of Friday, I was given the ibogaine. And then I was under the influence for close to 36 hours, which was an extraordinarily long time, but my body absorbed it. It was too long for me. There were times I thought, Oh god, please let me come down?

There aren't a lot of words for some of the stuff that I saw or experienced, other than I was close to God in so many different ways. It was administered under a very clinical setting -- it was given to me in the form of capsules. I was hooked up to an IV and a blood pressure cuff, and a body temperature sort of deal. I thought, I'm in a safe place. I was with a doctor and two nurses who watched me around the clock. They hooked me up to this machine; I was in a really comfortable bed, the room is completely dark, and I had these eye goggle things, headphones, and an mp3 player with six to eight hours of tribal drumming with some underlying tracks of rhythms that your neuro-pathway responds to.

Dr. Mash is one of the world's leading brain scientists. She's hip to how your brain responds to sound and music. I wouldn't say it was hypnosis. In traditional ceremonies there are similar approaches on a more fundamental level. With peyote, an Indian sits at the door of the teepee and plays a rhythmic drum -- it's slow and it's fast, heavy and then it's light. It helps the person with their journey.



Incredible visions

I started to feel it after 45 minutes; it's a huge body rush. You feel warm, your fingers and toes are tingly, and then it comes on really fast. You can see what your mind is suddenly creating. I created these incredible visions -- so fast that I couldn't process what the experiences were. After awhile, it slowed down. I tell people, with the slot machines, the three columns are spinning at different rates of speed. Within these columns were experiences I remembered, some I didn't know what they were, strange random things. There were these incredible patterns of geometric patterns that I would become, I would look at them and they would change. If I focused on one, I'd get pulled into it, or become part of it. Some of it was childhood trauma that I would re-experience in a peaceful, gentle way. It allowed me to process some of this stuff that I hadn't processed before.

It allowed me to see me, the 8-year-old child, and have compassion for him and kind of tell him he was okay and he was safe in all those things that were not terminal and he could get on with his life. Some of it was random crazy stuff. Like these childhood toys.

We had this thing called a Big Wheel. I was able to ride this Big Wheel and play. When you get on it and peddle really fast and the wheel spun, it was like being a child. I was never scared. Some get scared. I think it's not letting yourself go with the experience.

There are so many people who have profound experiences where someone came to them and said stop using drugs. But that didn't happen to me. I had an overwhelming experience of peace and harmonic connection with myself, the planet and the universe. There were some dark scary moments of things I couldn't describe. Some people see snakes or spiders. I didn't see any of that, but I felt the presence of darkness. I didn't push it away. I hung with it for a period of time and that passed on. Most of my ibogaine experience was in a beautiful bright light with lots of colors. I could smell colors.

Afterwards, I first tried to sleep and I couldn't sleep. I was not tired at all and I was up for another three to four days. You get a huge hit of serotonin. I went back to Miami. I did have some counseling. They let me process it; not everybody at this treatment center opts for the extra credit of ibogaine; I was one of the few people and we kind of stuck together. Some didn't understand taking drugs to get off drugs. But the people that did were of the same mind, and we processed our stuff tighter with a therapist as well. There were six people who opted for ibogaine and they are still not using.

NE: I know that part of the counseling involved being told not to return to your old group of friends who used meth. Was this difficult for you?

A: No it wasn't because of my dual life element. But a lot of people who were with me at the center were doing really good until they went home. Their friends are still using and they fell right back into it.

NE: How much did your treatment cost?

A: The treatment center alone was $21,000 and the ibogaine experience was $5,500. I didn't have any insurance at the time. I was there for in-patient treatment, which included six days in Cancun. We went to a gym, did aikido, yoga, went to a spa every Saturday. Then we lived in this outpatient house, it was reality based. Some centers lock you up and keep you out of the general population. These are called lock-down facilities. With this treatment center, you had to want recovery because you could easily use drugs. There were people who left halfway through and you don't get your money back.

NE: How do you feel now?

A: Dr. Mash has done studies that show our receptor sites are put to pre-drug abuse status after the ibogaine experience. Some of that can be argued because it's just one study, but I know in my heart of hearts that I'm physically and mentally as good or better than I was in my 20s. My body is coming back faster than I expected it to. I'm 175 pounds. I exercise daily, do yoga. I have a couple of dogs, and I'm always busy with them.

I'm not working right now by choice because I can float a little bit longer. I'm going to go back to school and get a degree in herbal medicine, if not go for a natural pathics degree. I'm going to take my culinary background and wrap it with nutritional science and get into the healing field. It's one way to stay on track, and I can help people. Which I'm good at.

Im also going to do some marketing for ibogaine, work as a liaison between Dr. Mash and the treatment facilities on the West Coast. I have to wait another three months. No one is going to take 90 days of recovery seriously. It'll help me stay clean.

NE: Do you have cravings now?

A: I don't ever want to go back to where I was. I don't want to lose my family, my life, the things I created. Every once in awhile when stress hits, or pressure hits, it crosses my mind, but it goes through my head so fast. To think of crystal meth today - what was I doing? What was I thinking? It definitely wasn't me.

Some people don't have as many resources as others. And you pray for them. You see people in the treatment facility and think, oh gosh, they're not getting it. Or there's so much pain. One 19 year-old kid, a world class surfer, he didn't do ibogaine -- his dad was in prison. He grew up with that whole concept, and he admired his dad, but he did things that put him in a place where he went to prison. He started to get it, but he was one of the kids who didn't make it.

NE: Any last words on your recovery?

A: Ibogaine is so important. It's not too good to be true and I'm a living example of it. I/m so lucky to have found it, and I wouldn't be clean without it.

https://www.northernexpress.com/news/feature/article-2192-addiction-to-meth/
 
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