Five Things to Consider Before Jumping into Healing Through Plant Medicines

Happily, more and more people are slowly learning about the power of psychedelic plant medicines to heal a growing list of ailments and disorders. Mounting scientific evidence clearly shows the therapeutic benefits of psychedelic medicines for dealing with multiple health issues/concerns -- especially compared to pharmaceuticals that more often mask the problem rather than helping solve the underlying issue.

If you are now on that journey of considering psychedelic plant medicine for healing, here are five things to consider as you are deciding upon your options.

Note: As always, please do your research and consult with trusted doctors/professionals before making any major life decisions -- including the use of these plant medicines.

First, determine if you are a good fit for plant medicine. People with certain physical and mental conditions should not do psychedelics of any kind.

You also need to decide if you are truly open to the healing potential of plant medicines. Most of us grew up within the conventional medicine system, starting with being seen by a pediatrician and getting all our shots and vaccinations, and continuing to see a conventional doctor to this day. We have placed our doctors on a pedestal when they are just people like you and I. Many conventional doctors, in my opinion, are much too focused on prescription drugs rather than on alternate methods of healing -- including nutrition and plant medicines.

The results from an interesting study from Ohio State University states, "findings suggest that people more open to new experiences and willing to surrender to the unknown may be best positioned to have a positive experience on psychedelics, and individuals who tend to be preoccupied or apprehensive could be more likely to have a negative, or challenging, experience."

The key is understanding that these medicines are tools -- not cures. These plant medicines open your brain to greater insights and understanding, which can then help you process your pain and put you on a path to healing.

Second, research the best plant medicine for the healing you seek. While each of these plant medicines is a psychedelic, it seems that each has specific benefits.

Ayahuasca seems to help treat addiction, anxiety, treatment-resistant depression, and post-traumatic stress. It's also a tool for psychological healing, personal growth, and expanding consciousness. People have found a plethora of mental and physical healing from this fascinating plant medicine.

Psilocybin has been shown to do extremely well in the easing of major depression, as well as secondary benefits, including feelings of well-being, the ability to express emotion, and social functioning. People also use psilocybin to help with alcohol use disorder and other addictions, migraines, and post-traumatic stress.

Ibogaine seems most used for fighting addictions to drugs such as heroin, morphine, and other opioids. Ibogaine seems to increase abstinence and relieve withdrawal symptoms of these truly addictive and destructive drugs.

Third, explore the best setting for your plant medicine journey. Every person in psychedelics stresses the importance of setting for these plant medicine journeys/ceremonies. Participants need to feel they are in a safe and secure place, so if you are doing your healing outside your home, do the research to make sure you will feel comfortable and safe at the facility. You'll want cozy clothing, pillows, and blankets. You'll also want to explore music and lighting to see what works best for you.

Part of the setting should also involve having a sober and trusted trip-sitter at your location -- someone who can help guide and comfort you through any "challenging" experiences during your psychedelic journey.

Obviously, if you are traveling to a facility, be sure to vet it as best you can. In countries where the plant medicines are legal, you should be able to find much information; the problem lies in the U.S. and other countries, where these centers operate underground and prospective participants have to rely on word-of-mouth and testimonials from trusted people.

Fourth, prepare for your plant medicine journey. Another critical factor most psychedelic experts discuss is mindset. You want to go into a ceremony/journey with a clear intention for healing; these are medicines, not party drugs. While the medicine may show you something completely different than your intention, experts still recommend having that clear focus... and to also keep your expectations to a minimum.

But preparing also goes beyond setting intentions. In many cases, to have the best experience with the plant medicines, a simple diet is recommended (especially for ayahuasca) -- and it's best to stop other forms of self-medicating, if possible, with alcohol, cannabis, and recreational drugs.

Fifth, commit to post-ceremony integration of your plant medicine journey. As mentioned previously, these plant medicines are simply tools that allow participants to use and access what they need for their healing. Integration counseling -- right after the journey/ceremony and for weeks and months afterward -- helps participants understand and try to place meaning on their experiences... and help build a framework for incorporating all the lessons and new understanding to their lives.

It's best to start keeping a journal weeks before your planned ceremony -- filled with your intentions and thoughts, including any dreams you have leading up to consuming the plant medicine. You should also write down your experiences from the ceremony as soon as you can after it is completed... and keep adding to it and reflecting on it for the weeks after your ceremony, slowly working on parts of you that you plan to change based on the insights gained from your psychedelic experience.

Final Thoughts About Psychedelic Plant Medicines

These plant medicines have a rich and long history of use within numerous indigenous tribes across the globe. These medicines are powerful and life-changing. These medicines need to be respected and taken with the utmost intentions for healing and insight -- and not simply for recreational hallucinations.

See also Tripsitter -- an educational resource exploring the safe and responsible use of psychedelics.

Learning More About Psychedelics From Dr. Randall

Useful Articles to Learn More About Psychedelic Medicines

Dr. Randall Hansen is an advocate, educator, mentor, ethicist, and thought-leader... helping the world heal from past trauma. He is founder and CEO of, a network of empowering and transformative Websites, including

He is the author of the groundbreaking Triumph Over Trauma: Psychedelic Medicines are Helping People Heal Their Trauma, Change Their Lives, and Grow Their Spirituality and the well-received HEAL! Wholeistic Practices to Help Clear Your Trauma, Heal Yourself, and Live Your Best Life.

Dr. Hansen's focus and advocacy center around true healing ... healing that results in being able to live an authentic life filled with peace, joy, love. Learn more by visiting his personal Website, You can also check out Dr. Randall Hansen on LinkedIn.