Breathwork: Powerful Practice for Psychedelic Integration

Breathwork can help you achieve psychedelic integration by stimulating both conscious and unconscious levels of awareness in a way that is not possible through traditional speech-based therapies.

Psychedelic integration is an integral part of psychedelic-assisted therapy. It prepares clients for their journey and allows them to process and integrate what they’ve experienced. Interestingly, recent research suggests that psychedelic-assisted therapy can effectively help minimize depression and suicidal tendencies in treatment-resistant individuals and other mental health and addiction disorders.

Psychedelic breathing is a systematic exercise aimed at raising consciousness. It has the great potential to expand the mind and aid in self-discovery. The breathing practice can assist you in gaining more insight, fresh ideas, and clarity.

First, Let’s Read a Bit about Psychedelics

Psychedelics are a broad category of hallucinogenic substances, divided into conventional hallucinogens and dissociative drugs (ketamine). Both breathwork and psychedelic therapy aim to change the state of mindfulness from a “wakeful” reality – that is normal and our day-to-day practice – to one where our mind is more flexible and open, i.e., “ego dissolution.”

In ego dissolution, our distinctive perception of “I” or individual self is dissolved, and we notice more integration and connection with the rest of society. We experience altered states of consciousness when we exercise, dream, meditate, and so on, but to a much lesser extent than when we do with focused breathwork or psychedelic integration journey.

Breathwork, like psychedelics, appears to have emerged from the shadows and is gaining popularity in the mainstream. Influencers such as Wim Hoff, who use cold therapy and breathwork to activate our bodies’ natural potential to heal, and Patrick McKeown, who talks about the Buteyko Breathing method for neurological disorders, notably sleep, have recently popularised breathwork.

With psychedelics, the altered condition of consciousness is more particular to the compound that is ingested (such as lysergic acid diethylamide, or LSDs), whereas with breathwork, increasing the natural dimethyltryptamine (DMT) that is discharged from the pineal gland begins an experience like a psychedelic.

Breathwork, like psychedelics, has the power to interrupt the fundamental motivations of addiction, thereby serving as a disruptive strategy for addiction rehabilitation. The strategy is orchestrated around objectives like finding novel solutions to binge cycles, cravings and even planning strategies to avoid worsening by creatively exploring new ways of addressing physical and psychological triggers. Furthermore, understanding the roots of addiction by regaining access to previously unavailable memories is also an item on this agenda.

The more ambitious the outcomes, the longer the breathwork session will be. The treatment can take up to three hours to complete. The patient’s mind will have drifted nearly the same way as psychedelics do during this time. It’s a fantastic tool for anybody looking for personal empowerment and emotional self-discovery.

Breathwork Practice for Psychedelics Integration

One of the most critical aspects of health that has long been disregarded in Western medicine is our breath. Incorporating a psychedelic breathwork practice with psychedelic integration offers numerous advantages including a reduction of stress disorders and psychological distress. Psychedelic therapy is gaining popularity for its ability to break addiction habits and alleviate post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) symptoms. In addition, psychedelics can often reveal the source of addictive habits, allowing us to reframe our situations with more self-acceptance and love.

psychedelic breathwork

Deep breathing is a harm reduction psychotherapy approach. Its programs have been recognized as effective supplemental therapy for PTSD and addiction. Advanced breathwork practices, like psychedelic medicines, shut down the prefrontal brain, switching off our self-identity and letting the body proceed with stored emotions.

Like breathwork exercises, psychedelic-assisted therapy has emerged as one of the most promising innovative treatments for depression, anxiety, PTSD, and drug abuse in the last two decades. One of the breathing practices for Psychedelic integration is called Coherent breathing (resonant breathing) – which is a slow breathing rhythm that takes about six breaths per minute. It’s ideal for soothing the nervous system if the psychedelic experience has shown additional restorative integration methods. The technique is simple yet powerful. Simply breathe in slowly through the nose for a count of 5 and exhale slowly through the nose or mouth for a count of 5.

Another breathing practice for psychedelic integration is breathing meditation. Extended, more controlled breathing sessions assist in collapsing the conscious mind, allowing the body to release unpleasant emotions and enter altered levels of consciousness without using psychedelic drugs. After a psychedelic experience, these longer sessions are recommended to be repeated every 1-2 weeks for further integration.

According to research, classic psychedelics or hallucinogens are psychoactive drugs with high therapeutic promise and a powerful tool for analysing mystical experiences and behavioural-brain interaction in general. Psychedelic Harm Reduction approach and Integration (PHRI) is a transdiagnostic and transtheoretical clinical strategy for working with patients who have used or are thinking about taking psychedelics in any condition. PHRI combines harm reduction and psychedelic-assisted psychotherapy features and can be used in short- and long-term psychotherapy sessions.

Concluding Remarks

Both psychedelic therapy and breathwork have a lot of promises for self-discovery, healing, and development. Practices for psychedelic integration should be practical, enjoyable, and supportive. Various breathwork practices such as holotropic breathwork, and transformational breathwork can help you integrate your psychedelic experiences and get the most out of them.

The trend has garnered a fair bit of popularity recently, with many facilities now including it in their workshops.  However, more clinical studies are needed to ensure efficacy and safety, mainly to understand how these tools function with the chemical messenger system of the brain. The understanding will be useful in exploring and essentially recreating addiction through altered states of consciousness.

Breath Masters guides users through a breathing exercise. They also give instructions on how to get ready for the psychedelic sessions. Visit this link for more information if you are intrigued!

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