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Are Mushrooms Addictive? Your Questions About Psilocybin Mushrooms Answered

September 6, 2023
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You may have heard about how “magic mushroom” use is legal now in the state of Oregon. Many people are touting this hallucinogenic substance for its ability to help with medicine-resistant depression, obsessive-compulsive disorder, and other mental health issues.

But are psilocybin mushrooms addictive?

You’re excited about how these therapies are helping other people, but you worry that you won’t respond as well to treatment and could become addicted.

We’ll answer all your questions about the addiction potential of psychedelic mushrooms and give you some tips on how you can consume them safely.

are psilocybin mushrooms addictive

What Exactly Are Magic Mushrooms?

Magic mushrooms are fungi plants containing the psychoactive compound psilocybin, which has hallucinogenic effects when ingested. You may also hear of them referred to as:

  • Hallucinogenic mushrooms
  • Psychedelic mushrooms
  • Psilocybin mushrooms; or
  • Shrooms

These types of mushrooms are natural substances that may cause changes in moods, thoughts, or perceptions when used. More and more studies are being done on them to see how psychedelic therapy can be used in a variety of health and addiction issues.

Where Are Magic Mushrooms Found?

Most species of psychedelic mushrooms can be found in subtropical and tropical forests, but they may also be found in meadows or other areas. They are also plentiful in the Pacific Northwest. These mushrooms thrive in humus soil that is rich in plant debris. They are native to North America and Central America.

One of the reasons it’s important to ingest mushrooms under the guidance of trained professionals is that taking the wrong type of mushrooms can be harmful. We advise against going on the hunt for magic mushrooms on your own and suggest that you find a licensed facilitator in your area to guide you.  

Clinical Cognitive Training provides the best in psychedelic facilitator training programs in Portland, OR. We’re teaching future leaders of these therapies to help users stay safe while experiencing all the potential benefits of psilocybin.

Are Magic Mushrooms Addictive?

Many people who are interested in exploring the use of psychedelic mushrooms for health and mental benefits want to know, “Are mushrooms addicting?”

They have every right to be concerned based on things we’ve heard about “magic mushrooms” in the past. But the good news is that psilocybin mushrooms are not physically addictive.

Studies have shown that these substances are nonaddictive. Not only that, they are also being used to try and treat other addictive behaviors in Johns Hopkins studies on smoking and alcohol use disorder, among others.

However, if mushrooms are used improperly and without supervision, they can be abused and some people may form a psychological addiction. That’s why it’s so important that they are used responsibly and with the proper guidance.

are magic mushrooms addictive

Physical Addiction vs. Psychological Addiction

With substances that cause physical addiction, the user experiences physical symptoms like pain and sickness when they use it or are in withdrawal. These symptoms may range from mild — like a headache when you don’t have your normal amount of caffeine — to quite serious, such as seizures. 

Some of the most physically addictive substances include methamphetamine, heroin, and cocaine.

With psychological addiction, the user doesn’t have a physical need for the drug but instead has a strong mental desire for it. Psychological addictions are influenced by the pleasure centers of the brain that make you want to recreate the good feelings you get from certain behaviors (think sex, drug use, eating, etc.). 

Substances such as psychedelic mushrooms could cause psychological addictions.

3 Ways To Avoid a Psychological Addiction To Mushrooms

You may be interested in the medicinal uses of mushrooms and even think they can help your issues, but you still find yourself concerned about the possibility of psychological addiction. Here are three ways to stay safe and avoid a mental dependence on psilocybin.

#1: Monitor Your Dosing

It’s very important to monitor your dosing and allow time for the mushrooms to leave your system completely. In Oregon, they don’t allow back-to-back sessions for this very reason. You have to wait at least a day between doses to allow your body to metabolize the psilocybin.

Many people safely experience psychedelic mushrooms by participating in microdosing, which allows less than 5 mg to be ingested at one time.

However, you can build up a tolerance to psilocybin over time, so some people need to take more to feel an effect and can safely do so. A heroic dose of hallucinogens is considered to be 35 mg, and the state of Oregon doesn’t allow more than 50 mg to be ingested per session.

#2: Take Them Under Supervision

You should always experience mushrooms under the care and supervision of a licensed psilocybin facilitator. They will conduct a consultation before the start of your series to make recommendations on the appropriate dosage to achieve your desired goals and outcomes.

Facilitators are there to advise on dosing, guide your sessions, and help monitor your behavior along the way. With close supervision, it’s unlikely that anyone would form a mental dependence on mushrooms.

#3: Notice the Early Signs of Psychological Addiction

Signs that you are psychologically addicted to a substance include:

  • Thinking about it all the time
  • Increasing frequency of use
  • Loss of interest in usual daily activities
  • Strong emotional cravings for it
  • The belief that you need it to do certain things like socialize, sleep, or even just function

If you start to notice any of these, you may want to seek help.

are psychedelic mushrooms addictive

What To Do if You Think You’ve Developed a Dependence on Mushrooms

Because dependence on psilocybin isn’t physical, there won’t be a need for an inpatient program that closely monitors withdrawal signs. For psychological dependence, an addictions counselor is likely to provide the help you need.

If you need help finding a certified addiction specialist in your area, visit FindTreatment.gov sponsored by the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration.

Clinical Cognitive Training: Building an Effective Path To Using Mushrooms Safely

Now that Oregon has allowed the legal use of psilocybin for treatment, it is vital that those interested in facilitating the use of this substance can find a place to train for it.

Clinical Cognitive Training was one of the first certified psilocybin facilitator training centers in the country and is on the leading edge of programs in Portland, OR. If you’re interested in becoming a facilitator, we’re here to equip you with all the skills and knowledge you need to assist with psychedelic therapy.

Some of the advantages of receiving your education at Clinical Cognitive Training include:

  • Hybrid program flexibility – There’s no need to quit your day job! Continue to work and fit in your training around your schedule.
  • Small class size – Most classes only contain six students.
  • Getting the most out of your training – We go above and beyond state requirements for hours and also provide CPR and First Aid certification.

Plus, our tuition rates are among the most affordable in the state. If you think becoming a psilocybin facilitator is right for you, please contact us for more information about our facilities and application process.

The content in this blog is not intended to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment. Always seek the advice of your physician or other qualified health provider with any questions you may have regarding a medical condition.