Harm reduction approaches involve focusing on reducing negative consequences of drug use through either social policy (e.g., needle exchange programs) or psychotherapy. Drug testing or drug checking is one form of harm reduction and involves options for making sure that substances (e.g., MDMA) one buys do not contain harmful unwanted additives. There are several harm reduction organizations and websites that provide education and information to promote the safe and responsible use of psychedelics.
- DanceSafe is an organization designed to promote safety in nightlife and electronic music event settings and has Chapters throughout the US and Canada. DanceSafe provides on-site drug testing for events where psychedelics are typically consumed, as well as at home drug testing kits that you can purchase online. DanceSafe also provides helpful information about the effects of various substances and harm reduction tips for safe use.
- Erowid is an organization dedicated to collecting reliable and non-judgmental information about psychoactive plants and chemicals for educational purposes. Their website includes a wealth of information about subjective experiences, pharmacological properties, trip reports, and guidelines for safe use.
- Tripsitters is a resource for information and guidance about using psychedelics and includes information for sitters or guides ion how to best support someone who plans to use psychedelics.
- Third Wave is a research-based information website that includes information about microdosing.
- National Harm Reduction Coalition is a nationwide advocate and ally for people who use drugs and provides information and resources for the safe use of drugs.
- Fireside Project offers a Psychedelic Peer Support Line which is a free, confidential support line that individuals can use during and after their psychedelic experiences.
Psychedelic Harm Reduction & Integration Therapy
Another way to protect yourself when it comes to using psychedelics is to find a therapist who knows Psychedelic Harm Reduction & Integration Therapy. PHRIT is an approach to therapy that incorporates the client’s psychedelic experiences into their session(s) and provides a safe space for them to discuss preparation and integration of said experience. While searching for a therapist with competence in PHRIT, it’s important to keep in mind that most psychedelics are still federally illegal in the United States, even in cities where they’re decriminalized. Therefore, therapists cannot encourage illegal psychedelic experiences but can help you discuss plans so as to identify potential risks and benefits, as well as assist in making more informed choices. With that being said, PHRIT can be incredibly beneficial for folx looking to make sense of or simply talk about their psychedelic experience in a supportive and safe space.