Mushrooms containing the psychedelic chemicals psilocybin or psilocin are known as magic mushrooms (also as shrooms or mushrooms). Hallucinations can be induced by these chemicals. Psilocybin powder is also available in capsule form.
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Fresh or dried mushrooms may be eaten. Powdered psilocybin can be snorted or injected, and it is also available as a powdered supplement. Mushrooms are:steeped into tea
- added to cooked foods
- added to fruit juice (if powdered)
Psilocybin mushrooms are not the only type of mushroom that can be mistaken for poisonous ones. Some mushrooms that appear to be psilocybin mushrooms are in fact poisonous. You might harm your liver or even die if you consume a harmful fungus. It is illegal to cultivate, sell, or transport fungi. If you’re discovered, you may face hefty fines or even jail time.
What does it look like?
Pickers frequently mistake poisonous mushrooms for “magic mushrooms,” making it easy for them to be fooled. Eating a harmful mushroom can cause severe illness or even death. Magic mushrooms are often sold uncooked or dried. The liberty cap (Psilocybe semilanceata) and the fly agaric (Amanita muscaria) are the most frequent kinds in the United Kingdom.
- Liberty caps look like small tan-coloured mushrooms
- Fly agarics look like red and white spotted toadstools
It’s vital to understand that not all varieties of magic mushroom are the same strength. The fly agaric mushroom, for example, is generally more potent than the liberty cap fungus.
Another method of consuming magic mushrooms is using liquid psilocybin. It’s made from psilocybin, the naturally occurring psychedelic chemical found in various types of mushrooms, including liberty caps, and has a pale brown color. Vials are used to store it (small bottles).
What does it taste/smell like?
Liberty caps are generally eaten raw and have a strong earthy flavor and rubbery feel to them, making them extremely chewy. They don’t taste like the mushrooms you prepare at home, and some people mask the flavor by wrapping them in an omelette or serving them with tea.
Common Side Effects of Mushrooms
Although some people use hallucinogens as a method to connect with their spiritual side, there is always a chance that they will develop mental and emotional issues or cause mishaps while under the influence. Magic mushrooms are frequently consumed together with alcohol and other drugs by teenagers, increasing psychological and physical risks.
The amount of psilocybin and psilocin in any specific magic mushroom is unknown, and the amounts of psychoactive materials vary considerably. This implies it’s quite difficult to forecast a person’s length, intensity, and type of “trip.”
Consuming shrooms can result in a light trip with feelings of calm or drowsiness, but it may also induce frightening hallucinations, delusions, and panic. Convulsions have been reported as one of the worst-case outcomes of magic mushrooms use. Physical and mental side effects are possible with magic mushroom usage.
- Dilated pupils
- Increased heart rate, blood pressure, and temperature
- Lack of coordination
- Muscle weakness
- Distorted sense of time, place, and reality
- Hallucinations (visual or auditory)
- Having introspective (spiritual) experiences
- Panic reactions
More study is needed on the long-term, long-term consequences of magic mushrooms, but it’s been reported that users can develop longer personalities as well as experiences flashbacks years after consuming them.
Another potential hazard associated with magic mushrooms is poisoning. Poisoning occurs when poisonous mushrooms are mistaken for magical ones, as was the case in the tragedy described above. Mushroom poisoning can manifest itself in a variety of means depending on the type of mushroom ingested and other factors (see “What Are Magic Mushrooms?”).
It’s also typical for magic mushroom products to be tainted. Only 252 (28%) of the 886 samples purported to be psilocybin mushrooms tested by Pharm Chem Street Drug Laboratory were actually hallucinogenic, according to a study of 886 specimens evaluated by the laboratory.
Signs of Magic Mushroom Use
If your loved one is using shrooms, they may be nauseous or appear nervous or paranoid. In the case of drug use, it’s always important to pay attention to any changes in sleeping and eating patterns as well as shifts in mood, personality, and social activities.
There are rare but potential long-term side effects of hallucinogens including disorganized thinking, mood changes, paranoia, and/or visual disturbances.
When a person experiences hallucinations or visual disturbances long after taking a hallucinogenic drug, they are suffering from hallucinogen persisting perception disorder (HPPD). These are also known as “flashbacks” and might be confused with a brain tumor or a stroke.
You may notice that your loved one is experiencing dissociative effects of hallucinogens, which may include:
- Difficulty breathing
- Inability to move
- Increase in blood pressure, heart rate, and/or body temperature
- Loss of coordination
- Loss of memory
- Mood swings
- Psychotic symptoms
- Speech difficulties
- Suicidal thoughts or attempts
- Weight loss
If your loved one is taking mushrooms, they might display unusual behavior such as jumping out of a window or other dangerous actions.
If the mushrooms they have taken were contaminated or mixed with other drugs, they may show signs of poisoning including tachycardia (heart beating too fast), hypertension (high blood pressure), hyperthermia (body tissue becomes too hot), nausea, or vomiting.
Tolerance, Dependence, and Withdrawal
Like most drugs, the more you use magic mushrooms, the more tolerance you develop. Tolerance also develops quickly with regular use, meaning that with regular use, a person will need more of the drug to achieve the same effect.
Developing a tolerance can be especially risky with shrooms because consuming a large amount can result in overdose symptoms, which while not fatal, can include:
- Muscle weakness
- Panic or paranoia
How Long Does Psilocybin Stay in Your System?
The short-term effects of magic mushrooms typically wear off in 6 to 12 hours.4 But people can experience long-term changes in personality and flashbacks long after taking the drug.
The average half-life of psilocybin ranges from an hour to two, and it generally takes five to six half-lives for a substance to be eliminated from your system.
The typical urine drug screening for employment does not test for psilocybin, but there are specific tests that can be ordered to test for it. Like many other drugs, magic mushrooms can be found in hair follicles for up to 90 days.
How Long Does Psilocybin Stay in Your System?
Psilocybin is not addictive and does not lead to compulsive use. This is partly because the drug can cause an intense “trip.” Plus, people can build a tolerance to psilocybin fairly quickly, making it hard to have any effect after several days of repeated use.
While people rarely report physical symptoms of withdrawal when they stop using the drug, some experience psychological effects, which may include depression.
How to Get Help for Mushroom Misuse
If you suspect a loved one is experimenting or regularly using magic mushrooms, consider having a firm yet loving conversation with them about the risks of psychedelics, especially when combined with alcohol or other drugs. At this time, it’s also important to emphasize that you are there to help and support them.