Evidence has it that enjoying a good trip on magic mushrooms, otherwise known as shrooms can have a freeing impact on your mind. Several studies were conducted, which included some clinical trials, showing that the psychoactive ingredient that is present in shrooms called psilocybin, may have the potential of helping in relieving issues related to severe depression and anxiety.
Note, however, that shrooms have been classified under Schedule 1. This means that they are known with “no accepted medical use”. They are also illegal, which adds to the reason why scientists have found it quite difficult to exactly point out what they are capable of, and what they cannot do.
Can they Make Your Brain Bleed?
This common connotation has never been tested, given the reasons already mentioned above. However, some studies point to the other effects of using magic mushrooms. For one, it has been stated by the National Institute on Drug Abuse that tripping on shrooms can lead to relaxing feelings which are somewhat similar to the effects that result in using lower doses of cannabis.
Just like with that of other hallucinogenic drugs, including peyote or LSD, magic mushrooms are also thought to offer most of their effects on the neural highways within the brain, especially those that use serotonin, a neurotransmitter.
Also, they have an impact on the prefrontal cortex of the brain, which is the part that regulates thought analysis, abstract thinking, while playing a key role in both perception and mood.
Stories of Hallucination
When users were asked to describe how they feel after consuming shrooms, many describe hearing colors or seeing sounds as a common thing. These results were presented in a study and highlighted as an effect on how the substance psilocybin impacts the communication across the networks in the brain.
For example, individuals who were administered 2 mg of shrooms, experts saw stronger and new activity on various parts on the brain which rarely normally or even never participate in a “cross-talk”. These hallucinations proved to be a vital point which could lead to the understanding as to why this substance is found to be effective in easing depression.
The Study Continues
To continue with the study, research was done in 2012 regarding the properties of psilocybin. Even though certain areas in the brain were somewhat more pronounced, certain areas became muted, such as a specific region in the brain that plays a huge role in keeping composure to our sense of self.
This means that for people who go through depression, the connections that exist between this sense of self areas of the brain and the brain circuits are very strong. This is because individuals who enter into a depressive state have their brains overconnected. However, loosening such connections, while making new ones, may offer a sense of relief and calmness.
Results that came out of two clinical trials regarding the effects of the substance psilocybin on certain patients who are dealing with distress and depression that are connected to end-of-life crises suggest that administering a single dose of shroom is a hopeful, possible solution for the treatment of anxiety and depression.
After 6 months from the initial trial, around 80% of the participants showed a significant decrease in terms of the symptoms of anxiety and depression, as measured as what has been considered as a standard in a psychiatric evaluation.
The other team which also conducted a similar study reported that around 60% to 80% of their participants had also reduced depression and anxiety about 6 and a half months after that single tripping of the psychedelic substance.
So, is shroom a good thing?
Because of these studies showing a hint of positivity in the impact of the substance psilocybin, some researchers are led to the thinking of the possibility of shrooms also being able to help in relieving anxiety after they are used.
This interesting finding has also led some to open their minds to the possibility of looking into the capacity of shrooms affecting cancer patients, not with the disease itself, but with handling severe anxiety. A study from New York University showed that volunteers who experienced a placebo or were given a pill of psilocybin showed positive effects in this regard.
A psychotherapist from New York University explained that many of the participants have also experienced a result that left them feeling free with all of their anxieties and worries. It was thought to be a part of the entire healing process.
One thing to note, however, is that the tendency of feeling anxious is still possible, at least while patients are on the drug. Some have reported intense discomfort and anxiety within a few minutes up to a few hours while tripping.
These effects will soon lie low, as they started feeling a huge sense of relief afterward. Still, this experience does not apply to all, as it may still vary from one person to another. Other effects that one can expect include the dilation of pupils, as this is caused by an increase in the levels of serotonin.
No, It Does Not Make the Brain Bleed
To sum it up, no, shrooms will not make your brain bleed, at least literally. The abovementioned effects can somewhat be considered as positive, though are some unlikely effects as well. For example, some may not like the fact that their sense of time is distorted. They feel that time has slowed down, as this is one of the potential side-effects of consuming shrooms.
Also, some report experiences of out-of-body feelings, or experiences that feel real but are not. These experiences usually start around 20 to an hour and a half after taking shrooms and can last up to 12 hours. Of course, these experiences may still vary depending on the amount that you consume, your mood, personality, as well as your surroundings. You may even feel more imaginative and open. This goes to show that while the effects can be different from one person to another, needed precautions and understanding of your capacity will also help in making sure that the impact of shrooms will not be as negative as expected.