When it comes to psychedelics, first thing that comes to people’s minds is magic mushrooms. They grow from the earth, but its effects will blow your mind—literally. When consumed the right way, magic mushrooms bring much-needed hallucinogenic and psychedelic effects, or what enthusiasts simply call a trip.
Some people are especially adventurous and prefer to experiment on the experience by washing down their mushrooms with some alcohol. Is this a safe thing? What will happen? Learn about magic mushrooms and the possible effects of ingesting them with alcohol when you keep on reading.
What Happens When Alcohol and Mushrooms Interact?
The main thing to think about when taking alcohol and mushrooms is the possibility of addiction. Getting addicted to mushrooms doesn’t always happen, but getting addicted to alcohol absolutely does.
Aside from that, there’s always a possibility that people experience some adverse effects, including panic attacks, seizures, diarrhea, agitation, muscle weakness, and in worse cases, comatose.
It’s common for people to experience a bad trip, especially if they haven’t mixed alcohol and mushrooms before. A bad trip can be a traumatic experience that induces anxiety, as the hallucinations will be unpredictable and potentially terrifying. Moreover, there’s a chance that the experience leads to depression even days after the bad trip has worn off.
On the other hand, people who enjoy the effects of mushrooms and alcohol taken together might not enjoy the experience when one is taken out of the equation. This thinking leads to alcohol dependence, which, in turn, can lead to withdrawals and a lengthy recovery process to get back to normal.
The worst interaction that you’ll possibly have with alcohol and mushrooms is when you fail to get the right kind and end up with poisonous shrooms instead. Getting the wrong type of mushrooms can lead to fatality if you are not careful. So, it’s best not to go foraging mushrooms on your own, especially when you are intoxicated.
Why Do People Mix Shrooms and Alcohol Together?
Some people who feel more adventurous in their shroom sessions might feel tempted to add alcohol into the mix. The main reason why shroom enthusiasts go down this route is that they believe mixing these two substances can lessen the adverse effects.
As magic mushrooms may cause nausea and paranoia, particularly in higher doses, alcohol plays a substantial role in helping people handle those effects. When mushrooms take effect, the trip can be overwhelming at times. Sometimes, the hallucinations and heightened emotions feel like too much, so people will turn to intoxication from alcohol to calm their nerves and numb their feelings.
Usually, shroom enthusiasts eat a mushroom and wash it down with some wine. In some cases, people get psilocybin powder and mix it into beer while brewing or wine fermenting to create a psilocybin-infused beverage.
There is also a common assumption that the “happy vibe” brought upon by these two substances can somehow add up and lead to an even better time.
What Are Magic Mushrooms?
Magic mushrooms, also known as shrooms, are considered a drug for their physical and psychological effects brought about by a component called psilocybin. Psilocybin has great power over the brain and the nervous system, which, in turn, produces the mind-altering effects that surprise people.
These mushrooms can be found worldwide, especially in Mexico, the southern states in the USA, Central America, and South America. Some species of psilocybin-laced mushrooms can also be found in Australia, India, and parts of Asia.
With 60 different strains of magic mushrooms enjoyed for their unique effects, more and more people feel intrigued to try it out. In some key cities like Denver and Oakland, it is now legal to consume these substances, but most of the world still considers them illegal substances.
What Are the Effects of Shrooms on the Mind?
You can experience numerous effects when you try out magic mushrooms, but here’s one thing to note—the experience varies per person.
According to the Center for Substance Abuse Research, many different elements can change the effects on your mind and body and how intense they can be. Some of them are where you use it, the type of mushroom you consume, how much you take, your mood during that day, your personality, and even past drug experiences.
However, on average, here are some of the psychological effects you may get from magic mushrooms:
- Environmental connection
- Failure to realize what’s real and what’s not
- Heightened senses
- Thinking problems
- Trouble focusing
In rare cases, people also experience synesthesia. It’s a condition where the senses blend together, and you may hear colors or see sounds. In other cases, people also say that they feel more spiritual after they take mushrooms.
In one 2016 study from the Journal of Pharmacology, some people state that there is also a possibility of feeling aggressive, violent, self-harming, or suicidal, but do note that these effects are very rare and are often the result of a “bad trip.”
What Are the Effects of Shrooms on the Body?
Though these are not the primary motivation people have for trying out mushrooms, it is undeniable that they come with physical effects, too.
In your shroom session, some physical effects you might experience are:
- Dry mouth
- Increased heart rate
- Muscle relaxation
- Dilated pupils
The greatest risk is in eating the wrong type of mushroom. There are numerous types of mushrooms, including poisonous ones. If you are not careful with where you source your shrooms, there’s a very big chance that you will encounter a toxic species that will poison you in some way instead.
Does Taking Shrooms Have Long-Term Effects?
Unfortunately, resources on the long-term effects of mushrooms are limited. There aren’t enough studies looking at what happens to people who take mushrooms regularly. Right now, the claims for positive psychological effects and its ability to stop addiction have some studies involved, but more research and data are needed to make objective claims.
First, a 2008 published study in the Journal of Psychopharmacology looked at the psilocybin effects in controlled settings. Half of the participants said 14 months of regular mushroom usage gave them a “personally meaningful” experience. Moreover, 60 percent of the participants said that the magic mushrooms increased their life satisfaction and sense of well-being.
Additionally, a 2016 study in the same journal mentioned that a single dose of psilocybin from magic mushrooms diminished the effects of anxiety and depression among terminal cancer patients.
It is important to note that these studies were all in controlled settings. What happens naturally in the real world can be incredibly different. Again, it must be emphasized that data is limited, and these claims are almost purely anecdotal.
When trying out magic mushrooms, it is best to approach them with caution in mind. As its effects are mind-altering, the magic mushroom experience is not something that you must enter unprepared.
If you have a higher risk of being addicted or someone who has had alcoholic experiences in the past, it’s best to stay away from magic mushrooms to eliminate the risk of being addicted again.
Being caught under a web of addiction can be the ultimate challenge. But it’s a problem that you can solve with the help of rehabilitation centers and a solid set of people ready to support.