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    Borderline Personality Disorder

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Psychedelic therapy to treat borderline personality disorder

Borderline personality disorder (BPD) is characterized by extreme feelings of frustration, depression, or anxiety, as well as significant difficulty controlling those emotions. Your thought or action patterns can appear rigid to the point that interruptions cause you significant distress. The condition’s intensity and unpredictability can alienate sufferers, making them feel alienated and increasing their risk of self-harm and suicide. “Borderline” applies to the additional mental health problems that people with this disorder are frequently on the verge of being diagnosed with.

Breaking up relationships is an important aspect of BPD. It is a defensive mechanism that is often activated by a traumatic thought, concept, or memory, which causes the person with BPD to see a person, location, circumstance as all good or all bad. It can change in a matter of seconds.

This can be very confusing and upsetting for the family or partner, as it seems as though their loved one is continually pushing and pulling them. For the person going through it, their fight or flight mode kicks in when a threat (fear of abandonment) is detected; it feels like you’re in a tunnel with just one way to look; it’s like a physical downward spiral.

One approach for coping with splitting in dialectical behavior therapy is to allow the patient to retain two paradoxical thoughts at the same time. This can come across as overly simplistic, and it most definitely is, but rewiring the brain is a long process, which could be facilitated by psychedelic medicine.

Someone who is lost in their mind and unable to get out of their own head and empathize with others will certainly benefit from psychedelics.


Possible causes


You could be more susceptible to developing BPD if you inherit genes from your parents. According to one study, if one identical twin has BPD, the other identical twin has a 2-in-3 risk of getting BPD as well. These findings should be interpreted with caution, since there is no proof of a gene for BPD.

Chemical imbalance

Many people with BPD are thought to have a problem with their brain’s neurotransmitters, especially serotonin. Neurotransmitters are “messenger chemicals” that the brain uses to communicate with other brain cells. Serotonin imbalances have been related to depression, aggression, and the inability to regulate destructive impulses.

Brain development issues

The scans showed that three regions of the brain in many people with BPD were either smaller than normal or had unusually high levels of activity. The amygdala – which is involved in emotion regulation, especially “negative” emotions like fear, aggression, and anxiety; the hippocampus – which helps regulate behavior and self-control; and the orbitofrontal cortex – which is involved in planning and decision making.

Environmental factors

Among people with BPD, a range of environmental factors seem to be common and widespread. These include: being a victim of emotional, physical, or sexual abuse; being subjected to long-term anxiety or depression as a child; being abandoned by either one or both parents; growing up with another family member who had a serious mental health condition, such as bipolar disorder or an alcohol or drug misuse problem.

Traditional treatment options

Dialectical behaviour therapy

The dialectical-behavior therapy (DBT) is a form of cognitive-behavioral therapy. Its primary objectives are to teach people how to live in the moment, cultivate healthy stress coping mechanisms, control their emotions, and strengthen their interpersonal relationships.

Dialectical means “the co-existence of opposites.” In dialectical behaviour therapy, people are taught two seemingly opposite strategies: acceptance (i.e., that their experiences and behaviours are valid), and change (They have to make positive changes to manage emotions and move forward).


Several studies have shown that some antidepressants are successful in treating specific symptoms of BPD. SSRIs, for example, can help with emotional distress, impulsivity, self-harm, and rage.

TMS therapy

Repetitive transcranial magnetic stimulation (rTMS) may help improve refractory depression in patients with BPD, according to research presented at the American Psychiatric Association’s annual meeting.

Current status of psychedelics in the BPD intervention
While research into the use of psychedelics in treatments for a variety of psychiatric disorders has shown promise, no studies into the use of psychedelics in BPD interventions have yet been conducted.

Exploring the case for research on incorporating psychedelics within interventions for borderline personality disorder

Richard J. Zeifman, Anne C.Wagner Borderline Personality Disorder (BPD) is a serious psychological disorder marked by behavioral and emotional dysregulation, as well as self-identity and social functioning disruptions. Despite the fact that there are evidence-based psychotherapeutic treatments for BPD, they have significantly limited treatment efficacy. There is a huge need to improve existing BPD interventions. […]

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Psychedelics and the new behaviourism: considering the integration of third-wave behaviour therapies with psychedelic-assisted therapy

Zach Walsh, Michelle St. Pierre The evidence for the use of third-wave behavior treatments as adjuncts to psychedelic-assisted therapy is examined in this review. It establishes shared theoretical foundations for both approaches, as well as common mechanisms of action such as enhanced mindfulness, decentering, emotion control, and distress tolerance. It also defines possible targets, such […]

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