Psilocybin and ADHD: A Revolutionary Treatment?

by | Oct 7, 2022 | Research

It’s no secret that Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD) is on the rise. According to the CDC, the number of children diagnosed with ADHD has increased by more than 50% over the last decade.

While there are a variety of pharmaceutical treatments available, they come with a host of potential negative side effects, including decreased appetite, weight loss, insomnia, and irritability. So, could psilocybin be the answer?

What is ADHD?

Before we get ahead of ourselves, let’s take a step back and review what ADHD is exactly and why raising awareness for this condition is so important.

ADHD is a neurodevelopmental disorder that manifests itself as difficulty sustaining attention, impulsivity, and/or hyperactivity. It typically appears in childhood and can persist into adolescence and adulthood.

Untreated ADHD can lead to a variety of problems, including academic difficulties, relationship issues, low self-esteem, and substance abuse. October is ADHD Awareness Month, so it’s the perfect time to learn more about this condition and how it affects those who live with it every day. 

Now that we have a better understanding of ADHD, let’s take a look at how psilocybin could potentially help those who suffer from this condition. 

Psilocybin and ADHD Research

We still don’t fully understand the potential mental health benefits of psilocybin, but early research is promising.

The results and scientific review of an online survey examining the benefits of microdosing psychedelics are published in the journal Frontiers in Psychiatry. Many participants reported consuming psychedelics to treat ADHD. 3,590 people were surveyed, with 1,062 sharing that they microdose psilocybin or other entheogens to treat anxiety, ADHD, or another mental-health-related condition.

79% of those people had been previously prescribed traditional ADHD medications in the past but found them ineffective

70% of the participants reported low doses of psilocybin and other psychedelics to be more effective than previous pharmaceutical treatment options.

In addition to psilocybin, other entheogens that were reported to help reduce ADHD symptoms were LSD and MDMA. However, psilocybin was reported the most, with 86% of participants admitting to consuming psilocybin in general, and 60% reporting that they microdose psilocybin.

After reviewing the survey findings, researchers concluded;

“The current survey demonstrates that self-medication with MDP (Micro Dose Psychedelics) was experienced to be more effective compared to conventional treatment in case of anxiety, ADHD/ADD, and physiological disorders such as pain.”

The Future of Psilocybin, Psychedelics, and ADHD

While further research is needed to confirm these findings, the potential implications are huge. If psilocybin and other psychedelic-assisted therapy treatments are found to be safe and effective for those with ADHD, it could revolutionize the way we treat this condition. Doing so could potentially improve the lives of millions of people around the world. 

There is still much unknown about psilocybin’s potential therapeutic benefits. However, the studies and research conducted so far show promise for using psilocybin to treat conditions like ADHD.

Without the negative side effects often associated with traditional treatments like pharmaceutical medications, natural plant medicines like psilocybin may serve as a safer alternative. As we continue to learn more about the therapeutic potential of psilocybin, it’s important to keep in mind that these natural substances might hold the key to improving our mental health.