March 16

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Frequently Asked Questions About Psychedelic Medicine

By Tatyana Kholodkov

March 16, 2023


Do you offer Psilocybin treatment in Durham, NC?

At this time in North Carolina, the only medicine available to work with legally (above ground) is Ketamine.  Recent trials using Psilocybin therapy show it is highly effective for death anxiety (including individuals with a terminal illness). It is also promising for OCD. Psychedelic medicine can help facilitate greater acceptance of circumstances, not as a resignation but as a whole-hearted way of being with the life before us.

Similarly, psychedelic therapy can help individuals with surrendering or making the active choice to release control. OCD, other forms of anxiety, trauma, and depression can all have components of “over-control” that cause a great deal of time and energy to be spent trying to prevent bad outcomes, which ends up being exhausting. Meeting life on life’s terms and in the present moment are some of our greatest challenges in being human. Fortunately, Ketamine therapy can also help with becoming more flexible and accepting.  

Project Yes is Dedicated to Quality Care

Project Yes is dedicated to quality care. Therefore we take great efforts to offer psychedelic therapy services in an intentional fashion. One that supports individuals in their journey through psychedelic preparation to integration, and that is adherent to best practices. We are hopeful that eventually, other psychedelic therapy options would be available to offer our clients in North Carolina. These psychedelic medicines have wonderful healing potential and clinical trials that back up their use. 

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I live in North Carolina or would like a virtual appointment from a PSYPACT state. Can you provide me a consultation about how to microdose, or whether I can use micro-dosing when also taking other psychiatric medications? 

As a licensed psychologist, Dr. Tatyana Kholodkov cannot provide you with any medical advice.  For questions regarding medications and interaction effects, she may refer to you to one of the psychedelic therapy-trained psychiatrists she collaborates with. 

Please note that although there are many reported positive benefits from micro-dosing psilocybin, Ibogaine, and other medicines, they are still not legal in North Carolina and most other states. Dr. Tatyana Kholodkov can only work with medicines that are legal in the state or country where the service is provided. This includes well as the geographical region she is licensed to practice in. 

Project Yes staff cannot supply medicines, recommend sources, or provide dosage guidelines pertaining to micro-dosing. However, we are happy to work with individuals who may utilize micro-dosing and can help you explore how it is working for you. Individuals who have used medicines recreationally and need to process experiences that arose are also welcome. 

What about micro-dosing ketamine?

Currently, there is little research on micro-dosing ketamine. In fact, it is quite difficult to define a “microdose” given how variable the effects are depending on the methods of how it is taken. It is recommended that you seek medical guidance regarding any form of micro-dosing. This is to ensure that you are not experiencing interactions with other medications you may be on. 

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There are so many psychedelic medicines. Which one is right for me?

There are legal factors such as where you reside. This includes which medicines are available for psychedelic therapy, there are several considerations in deciding if, and which psychedelic medicines may be right for you. 

All medicines have specific mechanisms of action. This means the different parts of the brain they act on and how they impact the body. This is why it is important to have guidance and be evaluated for pre-existing medical and mental health conditions. 

Ketamine May Increase Neuroplasticity

Ketamine works on glutamate, which gets neurons to fire in our brains. You may see increased neuroplasticity with ketamine therapy. Further, this mechanism is also what makes it unique compared to typical antidepressants, which work on Serotonin. Ayahuasca may also have antidepressant effects, as an MAOI inhibitor and serotonergic agonist. MDMA can temporarily reduce fear by acting on the left part of the amygdala. In addition, it can increase feelings of trust and openness toward others. 

Why Are You Seeking Psychedelic Therapy?

The reason you are seeking psychedelic therapy is part of how you may decide which medicine is right for you to work with. Ketamine is evidence-based for the treatment of depression and addressing burnout. Further, there is increasing evidence for trauma work and anxiety (including for end-of-life). It can also help with the reduction of alcohol use. 

Psychedelics Have Unique Qualities in How They Are Felt.

Each psychedelic also has its own qualities in terms of how it is experienced or commonly felt.  For example, MDMA is often referred to as a “heart opener” because it can create a sense of bondedness and positive feelings. This makes it a great tool for a couple’s work. Research shows that individuals with PTSD can work through their trauma more effectively as the fear softens with the benefits of MDMA therapy.

Furthermore, they can have a shift in perspective. Ketamine can give individuals a sense of “pause” in their usual way of thinking. This occurs as they step away from the sensory world. Others, experience relief from pain and sense that they are more than just their body, given the anesthetic qualities of ketamine. Although termed as “dissociative,” many clients actually feel incredibly embodied through ketamine-assisted psychotherapy, as seen when KAP is used for trauma work. 

Another Factor is the Duration

Some psychedelics make for a very long journey! Mescaline (the active ingredient in Peyote cactus) lasts 8-10 hours, as well as LSD. MDMA is also typically around 8 hours. Psilocybin lasts 4-6 hours. DMT lasts 15-30 minutes, and 5 MeO-DMT lasts 15-20. DMT is also one of the ingredients in Ayahuasca, however, an Ayahuasca journey is many hours in length. Ketamine vastly varies based on factors such as route of administration and the person’s metabolism: oral experiences can be between 30 minutes and 2 hours, intramuscular between 30 minutes to 1.5 hours, and IV procedures vary from 45 minutes to multiple hours in length. All psychedelics also have some kind of recovery time, and may also impact you the day(s) after an experience. 

It can be helpful to remember that no two experiences are the same, even with the same psychedelic medicine, route of administration, setting, and approach. That is part of the mystery of our minds! 

Is MDMA Therapy available in North Carolina? 

Yes- but only through clinical trials.  We are lucky to have MAPS open access study site in Waynesville, NC, through the Pearl Institute. Individuals with PTSD can consider enrolling through: https://www.pearlpsychedelicinstitute.org/contact — please mention you heard about it from us! 

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Begin Psychedelic Psychotherapy in Durham, NC Today

If you have been struggling with your mental health and traditional treatments have not worked we can help. Ketamine Assisted Psychotherapy is a proven alternative treatment that can address mental health issues that have proven treatment-resistant in the past. At Project YesDr. Kholodkov is trained extensively in the KAP Process and is here to help you on your journey to healing through Ketamine Assisted Psychotherapy and beyond. Follow the steps below to get started:

Other Services Offered by Project Yes

In addition to Ketamine-Assisted Psychotherapy, we offer Psychotherapy Services for AnxietyInsomniaIntegrative HealthOCD, and Trauma and PTSD. We also offer therapy for depression, relationships, psychedelic therapy, and sex-positive therapy as well as Yoga and Meditation Options. We look forward to guiding you on your journey toward optimal physical and mental well-being.

If you want to learn more about Ketamine Assisted Psychotherapy and our other services please check out our blog here!

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