3 Things To Expect When Taking A Mushroom Trip

3 Things To Expect When Taking A Mushroom Trip

A mushroom trip has many different aspects to it. However, there are certain changes you can expect to occur on both low and high doses, although to varying degrees.

In this post, we will take a look at the three things to expect when taking psilocybin mushrooms. These aspects of the psychedelic experience are perceptual, emotional, and bodily changes. We will also highlight how these effects can differ depending on the dose of mushrooms you take.

Perceptual Changes From Psilocybin Mushrooms

Magic mushrooms, like other psychedelics, can cause a range of perceptual changes. These are changes to your visual and auditory perceptions. Depending on the dose, these changes can range from alterations to what you can sense in your environment to hallucinations (sensory perceptions in the absence of an external stimulus, so sensing things not actually present).

Low Dose Mushroom Trip

If you take a low dose of “shrooms” (0.25-1 g of dried Psilocybe cubensis mushrooms), you might experience the following perceptual effects.

  • Colors becoming slightly brighter
  • The edges of objects appearing more distinct
  • Things looking as if they’re in high definition
  • The features of objects moving slightly
  • Music and external sounds having a different quality to them

These effects are more likely if you take around 0.5-1 g of magic mushrooms. 0.25 g of P. cubensis would, for many people, be more like a microdose. If microdosing magic mushrooms, there shouldn’t be any perceptual effects. People who are sensitive to psychedelics, however, might experience a change in perception on less than 0.5 g of mushrooms.

Medium Dose Mushroom Trip

On a medium dose of mushrooms (1-2.5 g), you can expect the following changes to your perceptions.

  • Colors become noticeably enhanced and vivid
  • Objects move, morph, and ‘breathe’
  • You can see geometric patterns overlaid on objects and the environment, as well as behind closed eyelids
  • You can see tracers (trails left behind moving objects, similar to those seen in long exposure photography)
  • Synesthesia: when different sense perceptions become mixed, so you can see sounds and hear colors, for example
  • Sounds become noticeably distorted

High Dose Mushroom Trip

On a high dose of magic mushrooms (2.5-5 g), the perceptual effects can be intense and include the following.

  • Visions of imagery, scenes, and entities (both with eyes opened or closed)
  • Seeing objects and people morph in intense and strange ways
  • Strong geometric and fractal hallucinations
  • Auditory hallucinations

Emotional Changes From Psilocybin Mushrooms

Whether during a psychedelic experience or psilocybin therapy, your emotions can change slightly or significantly. You may experience a range of emotions during a mushroom trip, as well as experience a change in your emotional attitudes toward certain things, such as yourself, your relationships, nature, and the world at large.

Low Dose Mushroom Trip

On a low dose of magic mushrooms, you might experience the following.

  • Positive mood
  • Calmness
  • Anxiety
  • Increased appreciation for music

Medium Dose Mushroom Trip

On a medium dose of psilocybin mushrooms, any emotional changes you experience will be more intense and can include the below.

  • Euphoria (including when listening to music)
  • Empathy
  • Anxiety, fear, dread, or panic
  • A feeling of contentment or peace of mind
  • Gratitude
  • Paranoia

High Dose Mushroom Trip

If you take a high dose of psilocybin mushrooms, you can experience emotions to a depth you’ve never felt before. These emotional states may include the below.

  • Ecstasy
  • Bliss
  • Boundless love
  • Intense feelings of gratitude
  • A strong feeling of euphoria and joy when listening to music
  • Intense states of dread or despair
  • A feeling of sacredness

Bodily Changes From Psilocybin Mushrooms

When taking a magic mushroom journey, you should also be prepared for some bodily changes. The physical side effects of psilocybin mushrooms are, for most people, manageable. These bodily changes are generally not as intense as they are with other natural psychedelics, such as iboga, mescaline-containing cacti, and ayahuasca.

Low Dose Mushroom Trip

On a low dose of psilocybin mushrooms, any physical changes that occur will be very mild. They can include the following.

  • A slight feeling of nausea
  • Dilated pupils
  • Increase heart rate, blood pressure, and temperature
  • A light body high

Medium Dose Mushroom Trip

If taking a medium dose of magic mushrooms, the bodily effects can become more noticeable. They can include the below.

  • Nausea (this feeling of uneasiness in the stomach usually only lasts at the beginning of the trip)
  • Sometimes vomiting
  • More dilated pupils
  • A further increase in heart rate, blood pressure, and temperature
  • Perspiration
  • A stronger body high
  • Muscle weakness

High Dose Mushroom Trip

On a high dose of psilocybin mushrooms, you may experience:

  • Strong nausea
  • A greater chance of vomiting
  • An intense body high
  • Loss of coordination (this is why it’s important to have a trip sitter when taking a high dose, as they can ensure that you don’t jeopardize your physical safety in any way)

Nausea from magic mushrooms isn’t as prominent as it is when taking mescaline-containing cacti, iboga, or ayahuasca (these other psychedelics commonly result in vomiting). However, this physical effect of mushrooms can still feel uncomfortable and unpleasant to many users. There are ways to minimize nausea side effects, including the below.

  • Taking the mushrooms on an empty stomach
  • Eating fresh ginger or ginger sweets, or drinking ginger beer or ginger tea
  • Taking common anti-nausea medication
  • Lying down during the period of nausea, taking slow, deep breaths, and focusing on your breathing

How Psychedelic Trips Can Differ

Individuals can have wildly different experiences on magic mushrooms, even when taking the same dose. There are so many other factors besides dose that can affect the psychedelic experience, most notably set and setting.

Set refers to your mindset going into the experience, including your mood, attitudes, beliefs, expectations, and personality. Meanwhile, setting is the context in which you take the mushrooms, including your physical environment, the people you’re tripping with, and the music you listen to.

If you want your mushroom journey to be as pleasant and smooth as possible, then it’s vital to pay close attention to your set and setting, especially when taking higher doses.

Make sure that you are emotionally prepared for the experience and feeling stable and well-rested on the day you dose. Moreover, have the experience with the right people around, should you want others to be present (either as fellow trippers or as a sober trip sitter). Be selective of where you trip, too: being undisturbed and comfortable at home or out in nature is usually ideal for positive experiences.

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Sam Woolfe

View all posts by Sam Woolfe

Sam Woolfe is a freelance writer based in London. His main areas of interest include mental health, mystical experiences, the history of psychedelics, and the philosophy of psychedelics. He first became fascinated by psychedelics after reading Aldous Huxley's description of the mescaline experience in The Doors of Perception. Since then, he has researched and written about psychedelics for various publications, covering the legality of psychedelics, drug policy reform, and psychedelic science.

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