Published: May 1st, 2018
Categories: Magic Mushrooms
Are you in the process of planning your first ever magic mushroom or truffle experience? If so, there’s a few things to consider first to make sure that you get the most out of your experience. People take mushrooms for multiple reasons, such as recreational and spiritual. Regardless of the reason, many people have had profound and even life-changing experiences from doing so. However, the experience can be extremely intense, and can lead to what is known as a “bad trip” if the person can’t handle the experience or did not prepare sufficiently.
There are two psychoactive compounds within mushrooms that are responsible for the effects, psilocybin and psilocin. Both of these molecules occur naturally within psychedelic mushrooms. When mushrooms are dosed orally, or eaten, the body converts psilocybin into psilocin.
A mushroom experience is dependant of many factors, including dosage. The experience may be different depending on a person's temperament, past experiences, mind set, setting, and so on. Reports state that some people have seen massive positive changes from taking mushrooms, and even tackled mental illnesses. In others, they have an almost opposite effect, and can induce feelings of paranoia and even schizophrenic-like outbursts.
Mushrooms trips are characterised by visual and auditory hallucinations and distorted perception. Sensations such as hearing colours or seeing sounds may occur, due to the way psilocybin affects communication within the brain.
The overall quality of an experience can be potentially improved by preparing for the event. Here are a few tips to attempt to optimize your experience if you believe taking mushrooms is right for you.
The idea of set and setting was proposed by American psychologist, author, and psychedelic advocate Timothy Leary. Set and setting is the idea that both the internal and external environment can greatly impact the direction of a psychedelic experience. The “set” refers to the mindset of an individual.
If a person enters a psychedelic experience with a negative mindset or during an extremely turbulent or distressing time of their life, chances are these emotions are going to come to the surface during the experience and catalyse a bad trip. However, if an individual enters the experience in a joyful, positive, and optimistic mindset, then they are likely to have a positive experience.
“Setting” refers to the physical external environment that the trip takes place within, and can have just as much of a profound effect on the outcome as mindset. For example, taking a large dose of mushrooms within an artificial environment, such as a nightclub or party might expose a person to far too much sensory stimulation. Taking mushrooms within a natural and quiet environment, such as a forest or beach might contribute to a much more rewarding experience.
A trip sitter is a trustworthy and responsible individual that accompanies their friend during their experience. They can either remain sober or take a small dose in order to join their friend. Having a trip sitter present can help to keep things under control if the individual starts to experience a bad trip. They can help to bring them back down, or even seek help if things get very serious. The very presence of a trip sitter can help to muster a supportive and safe environment.
Mixing substances can take away from the purity of only ingesting mushrooms, and may reduce or distort the experience. It can also make things quite dangerous if done recklessly. Taking mushrooms after drinking large amounts of alcohol or taking large quantities of other drugs probably won’t mix well, and could cause extreme behaviour, and more than likely a bad trip.
Eating mushrooms on an empty stomach will help to absorb the psilocybin efficiently and more quickly. This may also help to reduce nausea that might set in after taking mushrooms too close to consuming food.
Dosage is an extremely important aspect of the trip. Too little won’t cause the desired effect, and too much may lead to an overwhelming experience. 0.25g of dried mushrooms are reported to be a threshold dose that will lead to a light experience, whereas 1-2.5g is reported to be a medium dose that may cause visuals and an altered state of consciousness. These weights may be subject to an individual's metabolism, body weight, and sensitivity.
The effects of mushrooms can last between 3-6 hours, so it makes sense to keep hydrated during this time. Sugary drinks can also be used to keep some energy coming in without having to digest food. Consume sugary drinks if you feel you need to “come down a bit”.