Washington: Drugs that cause hallucinations such as LSD may have therapeutic potential for reducing intimate partner violence, a new study has claimed.
The study looked at 302 men ages 17-40 in the criminal justice system. Of the 56 per cent of participants who reported using hallucinogens such as psilocybin or LSD, only 27 per cent were arrested for later intimate partner violence, or IPV as opposed to 42 per cent of the group who reported no hallucinogen use being arrested for IPV within seven years.
"A body of evidence suggests that substances such as psilocybin may have a range of clinical indications. Although we are attempting to better understand how or why these substances may be beneficial, one explanation is that they can transform people's lives by providing profoundly meaningful spiritual experiences that highlight what matters most," said Peter S Hendricks from University of Alabama in US.
"Often, people are struck by the realisation that behaving with compassion and kindness towards others is high on the list of what matters," he added.
From the 1950s through the early 1970s, thousands of studies reported on the medical use of hallucinogens, mostly LSD.
Due to the classification of the most prominent hallucinogens as Schedule I controlled substances in 1970, research on health benefits was suspended, causing many of these studies to be forgotten. However, research with hallucinogens has again started.
"Recent studies have shown that psilocybin and related compounds could revolutionise the mental health field," said Hendriks.
"However, additional research is needed. This study suggests that hallucinogens could be a useful avenue for reducing IPV, meaning this topic deserves further attention," he added.