In this episode, my guest is Nolan Williams, M.D., a triple board-certified psychiatrist, neurologist and professor of psychiatry and behavioral sciences at Stanford School of Medicine. He is also the Director of the Stanford Brain Stimulation Lab. We discuss clinical applications for brain stimulation, behavioral protocols and novel drug treatments to halt and reverse mental health disorders, including depression and post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD). We first discuss the neural circuits for self-identity and mood and stress control. We discuss Dr. Williams’ work using transcranial magnetic stimulation (TMS) to depression, trauma, PTSD, and other mood disorders. We then dive deep into the history, biology, modern use, and safety margins of the various psychedelics, including MDMA, LSD, ketamine, ibogaine, ayahuasca, and psilocybin, as well as cannabis and the use of SSRIs in both adults and children. Finally, we discuss behavioral treatments for mental health disorders, including sleep and sleep deprivation, light exposure, exercise, and training to control the brain-heart-rate pathways. Regardless of age, all those interested in mental health should benefit from the incredible breadth and depth of Dr. Williams’ knowledge and the clarity with which he conveys that information.
- Adjunctive triple chronotherapy (combined total sleep deprivation, sleep phase advance, and bright light therapy) rapidly improves mood and suicidality in suicidal depressed inpatients: An open label pilot study (Journal of Psychiatric Research)
- Development of a rational scale to assess the harm of drugs of potential misuse60464-4/fulltext) (The Lancet)
- Breaking Open the Head: A Psychedelic Journey into the Heart of Contemporary Shamanism (by Daniel Pinchbeck)