Research has shown that a single dose of ibogaine has a success rate of anywhere from 70% to 90% when it comes to immediately interrupting addiction to heroin, cocaine, methadone, alcohol, or other addictive substances. As far as long-term success, that often requires a greater commitment than just doing Ibogaine and expecting your life to change. The immediate effects of the Ibogaine treatment experience often reveal the underlying trauma that led to the addiction in the first place and helps the individual find some acceptance of self. Combined with a comprehensive aftercare program, Ibogaine treatment has the potential to help patients establish long-term abstinence from addictive substances.
Most addiction therapies will leave one with grueling withdrawal symptoms and long-term side effects. When Howard S. Lotsof, then a heroin addict, first took Ibogaine as a recreational drug, he was shocked to discover some 30 hours later that he no longer craved heroin nor did he have any withdrawal symptoms from it. The experience sparked in him a life-long interest in researching Ibogaine and its ability to not only interrupt addiction, but to alleviate withdrawal symptoms. Due to the unique pharmacokinetic nature of the medicine, it acts on numerous receptor sites in the brain to physiologically attenuate withdrawals and rapidly create a neurogenerative (brain growth) effect that can be sustained for months with proper nutritional, social, and physical support. This makes it the only treatment that effectively deals with the dreaded PAWS (Post Acute Withdrawal Symptoms) that so many suffer after detox.
As an Entheogen, Ibogaine has the power to help individuals find a greater sense of purpose, heightened spirituality, and connection. Often, the introspective journey provides clarity into the events that caused the deep pain and trauma in the first place and sometimes even allows the person to accept where they are without needing to understand–it is no longer important as the trauma no longer serves them. Author Daniel Pinchbeck, in his book Breaking Open the Head, describes Iboga/Ibogaine as “10 years of psychoanalysis in a single night.”
Ibogaine is used for personal development and spiritual growth due to its ability to activate long-term memories while retrieving information from the unconscious, which together yields deep insights. It essentially allows the participant to merge his or her conscious and subconscious mind, coming into a state of greater awareness and understanding of life and personal history. Often these memories are shown to the person as a series photographs, movies, or paintings, similar to the life review that seems to happen with near-death experiences. This type of experience can be viewed as a controlled death or ego death which allows for the creation of a whole new identity free from past attachments and baggage.