Combining SSRI’s with psychedelics like psilocybin
Combining psychedelics like psilocybin, MDMA and LSD with psychoactive medication is not recommended. In a number of cases, the combination can be bad for your health and in other cases it is out of prudence. You used to read the next lines when filling in the intake to start a psychedelics tarjectory:
Please note! Please fill in the form below if you do not have one of the following contraindications.
– Susceptibility to psychosis (or a history of psychosis)
– Severe blood pressure/heart problems
– Cerebral haemorrhage
Furthermore, the following medications cannot be combined with psychedelics:
– SSRI, SNRI, TCA and MAO inhibitors (serotonergic medication)
– Benzodiazepines (Valium, Oxazepam, XANAX e.d.)
– Heart and blood pressure medication
– Opoids (tramadol, morphine and codeine)
* Never just stop taking your medication, but consult the doctor who prescribes it. In some cases, you can stop and then fill in the form two weeks after stopping and start your course.
According to the chart below, we have previously advised against combining SSRIs and psilocybin because it would reduce the effect and make the outcomes unpredictable.
Research on SSRI and psilocybin
Now new research is showing that combining SSRI’s and psilocybin is safe to do. From the schematic results you can see that there is not much difference between placebo with psilocybin and Escitalopram with psilocybin. In general, you can say that there is just more effect when no SSRI being used and that the effect of psilocybin starts earlier without SSRI. Furthermore, there is no difference in the increase of BDNF, the neurotrophin that causes neuroplasiticity. The flattening of emotions by the SSRI can also cause negative and positive feelings to be experienced less strongly and that can be an advantage or disadvantage.
Read the full study
SSRI’s, so no more tapering off before a psychedelic session?
So there is no real need to taper off SSRIs. In the past, we have helped a lot of people who stopped taking SSRI before the psychedelic session. A large number of these people stopped taking the medication after the session and we think that is better than continuing to take the medication. So from now on you can choose whether you want to continue taking SSRI’s or use the psychedelic session to try to live a drug-free life. If you want to stop taking the medication, ask your doctor how you can best do so. From June 2022 onwards, we will also admit people who continue to take SSRIs.
Undergoing a psilocybin session?
You can sign up for our services via the intake. We then check whether you can safely do a session and we give advice on the dosage. After that it is possible to book a date for your session.