Extend the Therapeutic Window: Mind+Body Psychedelic Integration

At the heart of our mission to destigmatize psychedelic-assisted therapy lies a holistic vision of health that encompasses the mind, body, and consciousness. While traditional treatments often address only a segment of this triad, genuine, lasting change in thought and behaviour demands a comprehensive approach. The Odyssey method embodies this holistic vision, blending therapeutic doses of IM ketamine with supportive therapy sessions and guidance mind and body practices for psychedelic integration.

Whether you’re deep into your Odyssey journey or on a path of independent healing, these practices can be invaluable tools.

In this article, we go over:

  • The limitations of traditional treatments
  • Ketamine’s potential in mental health
  • The role of integration in extending the therapeutic window of PAT
  • Odyssey Mind + Body Integration practices

The Limitations of Traditional Treatments

For many, traditional treatments like SSRIs offer a lifeline. 

However, for nearly half of these individuals, relief is often temporary. 

A significant portion finds no relief at all. 

Even those who benefit might struggle with side effects like apathy, weight gain, and decreased libido. 

The prolonged 4-6 week onset of SSRIs’ effects can be especially challenging for those with severe depression.

Enter ketamine-assisted therapy, a revolutionary approach in mental health.

Ketamine’s Therapeutic Potential for Mental Health

Unlike traditional methods that focus on either just mind or just body chemistry to mask symptoms, ketamine-assisted therapy catalyzes a deep, transformative change from within.

Unlike SSRIs, which primarily focus on the serotonin system, ketamine targets the brain’s glutamate system. Glutamate is a pivotal neurotransmitter responsible for making neurons fire. More importantly, it plays a crucial role in neuroplasticity, the brain’s remarkable ability to make new neural connections and modify existing ones.

Ketamine has a rapid onset of action. Patients don’t have to endure weeks of waiting; the antidepressant and anti-anxiety effects of ketamine manifest within mere hours. 

While SSRIs work covertly, adjusting the brain’s chemical balance to alleviate symptoms without addressing their root causes, ketamine takes a more direct approach. The psychological experience induced by ketamine, lasts between 60 to 90 minutes and offers profound insights into our behavioral patterns, thought processes, and past experiences. 

The introspective journey facilitated by ketamine can be harnessed for true healing.

Using Mind + Body Psychedelic Integration Practices to Extend The Therapeutic Window in Ketamine Assisted Therapy

Ketamine is a catalyst, not a cure-all. 

However, the post-dose therapeutic window, characterized by heightened neuroplasticity, can be extended. 

By incorporating regular mind-body psychedelic integration practices before, during and after our PAT sessions, we can strengthen the new neural connections formed during the psychedelic session. 

These new connections help us retain insights gained during the psychedelic experience, and create more helpful thought and behaviour patterns – pivotal elements to long-term healing.

Odyssey Mind + Body Psychedelic Integration Practices

Navigating the intense emotions of a psychedelic experience can lead to profound self-understanding and a renewed world perspective. 

By integrating mind and body practices into our daily lives, we can better navigate these experiences.

Here are three practices and their benefits at different therapeutic stages.

Yoga at EntheoMed's Kelowna Integrated Healthcare Centre for Psychedelic Integration

Yoga: Bridging Mind, Body, and Consciousness

Before the Session

Engaging in a yoga practice as a background to psychedelic-assisted therapy experience can help individuals establish a deep connection between their mind, body, and consciousness. The grounded feeling created by a yoga practice can help you enter your psychedelic medicine journey with a more present ‘set’ or mindset.

During the Session:
Grounding experienced through yoga can help individuals find stability and calm when faced with intense emotions or sensations during the psychedelic experience. 

After the Session: 

Regular yoga practice can assist in maintaining the mind-body-consciousness connection, helping individuals stay in touch with the insights and emotional releases experienced during their session. It can also help in processing any bodily sensations or emotions that continue to arise post-session.

Breathwork at EntheoMed's Kelowna Integrated Healthcare Centre for Psychedelic Integration

Breathwork: The Power of Controlled Breathing

Before the Session

Practicing breathwork can help individuals become more grounded. By learning to regulate their breath, they can access a calm and centered state of mind, preparing them for the session ahead.

During the Session

Breathwork can serve as an anchor during the psychedelic experience. When emotions or sensations become intense, returning to controlled breathing can provide immediate grounding. It offers a tangible way to navigate the ebb and flow of the experience, helping reduce possible overwhelm. 

After the Session: 

Continued breathwork can assist in the integration process. It can be a way to revisit and process emotions or sensations that arose during the session. Moreover, it can serve as a daily practice to maintain the sense of grounding and connection to oneself, reinforcing the therapeutic benefits of the psychedelic experience.

Mindfulness: Anchoring in Presence

Before the Session: 

Developing a mindfulness practice can help create a baseline of centredness. This foundation can be invaluable when entering the often unpredictable realm of psychedelic experiences. 

During the Session: 

By having the capacity to observe thoughts and emotions without judgment, individuals are better equipped to face whatever arises during their session.It serves as a grounding tool, enabling them to stay present and navigate the experience with clarity.

After the Session:

Post-session, mindfulness supports the integration process. By maintaining a non-judgmental awareness, individuals can reflect on their experiences, discerning the lessons, emotions and insights without becoming overly attached or averse to them. This ongoing practice can help solidify the healing and insights gained during the session.

Psychedelic Integration is the key to transforming insights gained from non-ordinary experiences into long term change in one’s inner world and experiences. By embracing practices like the ones mentioned here, individuals can cultivate an inner environment that supports lasting change catalyzed by psychedelic medicine.

Odyssey Mind + Body at the EntheoMed Mothership

The EntheoMed Integrated Healthcare Centre in Kelowna is Odyssey’s home base (or Mothership) for Ketamine-Assisted Therapy and Chronic Pain treatments.

It’s also a sanctuary where our community can enjoy Odyssey Mind + Body Integration Practices together, as part of their healing journey.

We will soon offer yoga, breathwork and sound healing sessions at our space every week, for only $25 a session.

For those unable to attend in person, Odyssey Mind + Body Online offers free bi-monthly sessions focusing on |mindfulness, sleep and other health and wellness topics.

To stay informed about our Odyssey Mind + Body Integration Sessions and get the latest updates on psychedelics for mental health, sign up to our newsletter. 

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