The scientific name for hallucinogenic “Shrooms” is Psilocybin Mushrooms. More commonly known as “Magic Mushrooms,” the biggest concern about their use is the extreme potential they have for mental addiction. They closely resemble other varieties of mushroom that are dangerously toxic. Once they are eaten, it will alter your state of mind and consciousness, as well as bring on hallucinations.
The whole experience is called a “trip,” and once it begins it can last up to 12 hours. While they are tripping, most users experience synesthesia which is a condition where senses become confused, as in hearing colors and seeing or tasting sounds. Shrooms affect the mind more than the body, and mental addictions can be the worst form of torture there is.
Why Do These Mushrooms Have Such A Drastic Effect & Where Do They Come From?
Psilocybin is the active ingredient in “magic” mushrooms that give them their hallucinogenic reputation. Digestion breaks this chemical down and the users trip begins. There are synthetic versions available which produce the same effect but natural mushrooms come from the U.S., Mexico, the U.K. and South America.
Common Ways Mushrooms Are Used
Psychedelic mushrooms come in dried form and most users simply eat them plain. They are very bitter though, so those who don’t like the taste typically mix their dose with food to hide the flavor. Mushroom tea is a popular choice and many will add their shrooms to fruit drinks and other sweet foods. They don’t have an obvious odor so there is really no way to tell if someone has added shrooms to their food or drink unless you taste it yourself and know what to look for.
Tolerance Forms Quickly and Addiction Soon Follows
It doesn’t take long to build a tolerance for mushroom use. Within 24 hours after first use it takes twice the original dose for the same effect, and it generally takes approximately 5 days after the last use for tolerance to fade. Many people use mushrooms to escape from life’s stresses. Once they start on this path, other than forgetting them all by tripping on shrooms, users rarely even try to find other ways to solve their issues.
Mushrooms are not considered to be physically addictive and so far, are not tied to brain damage. However, a user’s brain becomes so accustomed to the pleasant feelings mushrooms induce, psychological addiction can’t be avoided. Shrooms have a low toxicity level so for a person who has been using them for some time, withdrawal is not always obvious when their supply runs out. Not everyone develops an addiction. Some can use mushrooms every day without problems while others who follow the same pattern end up addicted.
Symptoms of Mushroom Use & Their Mental Health Risks
No one who uses mushrooms is entirely exempt from the symptoms they produce. Some users may be better at hiding it than others, but there are few exceptions to this rule. Users don’t get to choose what kind of “trip” they take, and it can last up to 12 hours whether they are enjoying it or not. Bad trips are full of paranoia and they are stuck for the duration with no way out. In general, once the drug has run its course side effects fade, but is some cases they can and do last for years.
Symptoms can include:
Shaky mental health and mushroom use often go hand in hand. Users so enjoy the trips they don’t willingly give them up. Facing the potential loss of loved ones, careers, financial stability and even prison time doesn’t seem to scare abusers. The psychological dangers of prolonged use are many, including the relapse or onset of schizophrenia. Mushroom use can literally cost a persons sanity.
- Euphoric Feelings
- Auditory and Visual Hallucinations
- Changes In Perception
- Dilated Pupils, Blurred Vision
- Rapid Breathing and Shaking
- Impaired Motor Skills
- Feelings of Lightheadedness, Loss of Energy, Weakness and Drowsiness
- Increased Pulse Rate
- Nausea, Stomach Pain
- Changes In or Loss of Appetite
- Lowered Heart Rate
- Increased or Decreased Blood Pressure
- Paranoia, Depression and Aggressive Behavior
- Unusual Behavior or Illegal Actions To Replenish Mushroom Supply
- And Even Hypothermia
Watch for the following and be prepared to deal with:
Addiction Treatment and Support
- Extreme Mood Swings
- Unpleasant Emotions, Panic Attacks
- Changes In Personality
- Dilated Pupils
- Extreme Changes in Appetite
- Paranoid Delusions
Treatment for mushroom abuse is concentrated on keeping the user calm and stress free. The main focus of rehab is on the psychological dependency of mushrooms. There are several different ways of addressing this problem and an effective treatment center will know them all. Treatment is not “one size fits all.” From one to the next, addiction affects users in different ways. A good treatment center will create personalized programs for each individual which will address not only the addiction but any related issues as well.