Psilocybin is a hallucinogen that works by activating serotonin receptors, usually in the prefrontal cortex. This part of the brain affects mood, cognition, and perception.
Hallucinogens act in other areas of the brain that regulate arousal and panic responses. Psilocybin Mushrooms do not always cause active visual or auditory hallucinations. Instead, it distorts how some people taking the drug perceive objects and people already in their environment.
The amount of medication, past experience, and expectations about how the experience is shaped can all affect the effectiveness of psilocybin.
After the intestine ingests and absorbs psilocybin, the body converts it to psilocybin. The hallucinogenic effects of psilocybin usually occur within 30 minutes of ingestion and last for 4 to 6 hours.
In some individuals, changes in sensory perception and thinking patterns may last for several days.
Mushrooms containing psilocybin are small and usually brown or tan. In the wild, people often confuse mushrooms containing psilocybin with other toxic mushrooms.
People usually consume psilocybin as freshly brewed tea or prepare it with food to hide the bitterness. Manufacturers also grind dried mushrooms into powder and prepare them in the form of capsules. Some people who consume these mushrooms are covered with chocolate.
The potency of mushrooms depends on:
In the United States, a national survey of substance use and health reports that between 2009 and 2015, about 8.5% of people use psilocybin at some point in their lives.
The ritual use of psilocybin for mysterious or spiritual purposes dates back to pre-Columbian Mesoamerican society and continues to this day. Psilocybin is often used as a recreation in dance clubs or by selected groups of people seeking a transcendental spiritual experience.
In the medical setting, doctors have tested psilocybin for use in the treatment of cluster headaches, end-stage cancer anxiety, depression, and other anxiety disorders.
However, some scientists have questioned its effectiveness and safety as a therapeutic tool.
The effects of psilocybin vary from person to person based on the user's mental state, personality, and familiar environment.
If recreational users have mental health problems or are anxious about the use of hallucinogens, they are at increased risk of having a bad experience.
Psychological stress is the most commonly reported side effect after recreational use of psilocybin. This distress can take the form of extreme anxiety or short-term psychosis.