The term ‘magic mushrooms’ has been commonly used since the 1960s to describe the hallucinogenic mushrooms that produce psilocybin, a substance that can lead to psychedelic effects.
There are over 200 species of mushrooms that contain psilocybin, and they can be found in many parts of the world. Often, they are found growing wild in grasslands and pastures, but they can also be cultivated in the home or picked from trees in wooded areas.
Psilocybin is the active compound found in magic mushrooms. It is converted into psilocin in the body, which is what causes the hallucinogenic effect. A person using magic mushrooms will experience sensory distortions, alterations in perception of time and space, and altered emotions and moods. In addition, color perception, memory recall, and the sense of self are all affected.
Magic mushrooms are often used recreationally, particularly by young people and adolescents who may not be aware of the potential dangers of taking them. The physical effects include nausea and stomach cramps, headaches, sweating, chills and shivering, muscle weakness, and loss of appetite. Psychological effects can include paranoia, panic attacks, psychosis and suicidal thoughts.
Magic mushrooms are often taken together with other substances such as alcohol or marijuana as a means of reducing the negative side effects. This can lead to an additive effect and even more dangerous consequences. Mixing prescription or recreational drugs with magic mushrooms can increase the risk of toxic reactions or even potentially fatal consequences.
Psilocybin is not metabolized by the body into another drug but is instead broken down into different chemicals. Therefore, it enters the bloodstream directly without passing through the brain barrier. This means that it takes much less psilocybin to cause an effect than would be expected with other hallucinogenic drugs like LSD or mescaline.
Magic mushrooms can be addictive since tolerance to their effects develops quickly. People who take them regularly often try to dose themselves higher each time in order to achieve the desired hallucinogenic effects. Since tolerance develops quickly, there is always a risk that taking too much will cause serious adverse reactions or even death.