Mycologists and microscopists, amateur or professional, often make use of our wide selection of psilocybin mushroom spores for research purposes. That’s why is here! Now we’re going to talk about magic mushrooms safety or the overall safety of psilocybe cubensis mushrooms for therapy and recreational purposes for safe options.

Magic Mushrooms Safety of Psilocybe Cubensis Species & Psychedelic Compounds, and Understanding Psilocybin

Research in a home microscopy lab is rewarding work in and of itself; fungi is among the most fascinating organisms on our planet, and the taxonomical opportunities within the cubensis species is massive when you consider the many different strains available. However, with psilocybin taking the mainstream by storm (the so-called shroom boom we’ve seen in recent years), this research is becoming more and more important. Psilocybe cubensis mushrooms safety is well-known and researched. Here we provide some tips and possible guidance on the best ways to take magic mushrooms via raw, tea, extracts, and more.

If scientists want to have a better understanding of psilocybin, the psychedelic compound in Psilocybe cubensis and other “magic” mushrooms, going back to the formative stages of the fungi—its spore state—is a key component to fully understanding the hallucinogenic compound itself. It’s this work that lays the foundation of so many other components of this area of study, ranging from mycology to the creation of synthetic psilocybin.

psilocybin mushrooms under purple light, graphical separator

Since the spores of psilocybin-containing fungi are legal in most of the United States, anyone is free to do this kind of research. Psilocybin doesn’t become present in the fungi until later stages of development, starting with mycelial colonization.

Magic Mushroom Safety and Magic Mushroom Use for Different Effects

However, one must ask: are magic mushrooms safe, and what is the best magic mushroom use or what are they used for ? With the proliferation of psilocybin-assisted therapy, a significant portion of the medical community must indeed think so—but why? How do we know how magic mushrooms affect your brain in such a positive way?

As it turns out, many studies have been conducted on the topic of magic mushroom safety. Let’s take a look at one of the biggest ones, which concluded that psilocybin-containing fungi are perhaps the safest “drug” in popular use:

Psilocybin (Magic Mushrooms) Are Thought to Be The Safest “Drug” According to This Comprehensive Study

are magic mushrooms good for you

An independent research company called GDS (Global Drug Survey) runs the world’s largest drug survey. Based out of London, the company produces reports frequently cited in media, medical research, and even corporate research. GDS produces the eponymous Global Drug Survey, which questions tens of thousands of individuals on average.

In 2017, the Global Drug Survey found that psilocybin (magic mushrooms) is the least harmful substance in popular use—eclipsing even cannabis, which is widely thought to be a comparatively low-risk substance.

In the study that year, more than 10,000 people reported that they had taken magic mushrooms (in a recreational circumstance for the majority of respondents). A scant 0.2% of participants reported needing emergency medical treatment as a result of having consumed psilocybin-containing fungi.

While the study doesn’t detail why these individuals needed emergency medical treatment, it’s possible that the participants had particularly “bad trips” or hadn’t consumed magic mushrooms at all. You can avoid a magic mushroom bad trip easily by using common sense and through proper magic mushroom identification. As we’ll discuss in just a moment, misidentification of psilocybin-containing fungi is a dangerous and all-too-common problem for would-be magic mushroom users.

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What was surprising about the findings is that magic mushrooms were resulted in the fewest people requiring medical intervention compared to any other drug in the survey, including cannabis, LSD, and alcohol. In fact, magic mushrooms required less than a fifth of the rate of medical intervention for alcohol or cannabis.

So-called “bad trips” can be extremely unpleasant for some, but the effects are mercifully short lived. Read on to the next section for more on magic mushroom side effects. For now, let’s take a moment to discuss the problem of “mistaken identity” in the magic mushroom world, especially as it pertains to amateur foragers.

magic mushroom side effects

Perhaps the most dangerous aspect of magic mushrooms is the possibility of misidentification. Are mushrooms poisonous to humans? Yes—some certainly can be, and some of them may look similar to Psilocybe cubensis or other psilocybin-containing fungi.

This phenomenon has lead to numerous problems in the past, with individuals who misidentified a fungi while foraging. Death from a poisonous mushroom is relatively rare despite conventional thought on the matter (although it is certainly possible), but severe illness is likely.

Needless to say, foraging in the wild for psilocybin-containing fungi is not only illegal in most jurisdictions, it’s a very bad idea—doubly so for anyone without serious mycological experience and training in wild psilocybin mushroom identification. Magic mushrooms should only be consumed under the supervision of a licensed psilocybin-assisted therapy practitioner in jurisdictions where doing so is legal.

Can You Get Addicted to Magic Mushrooms? Scientists Agree: No, Not Really

We say “not really” here because under the right circumstances, anything can be addictive in the sense that a behavior set can become a habit; have you ever met one of those people that never goes anywhere without a bag of seasoned sunflower seeds, or a pack of gum? Or how about someone who can’t sleep without a fan blowing on them?

You wouldn’t say that your friend is addicted to sunflower seeds or bubble gum, but you probably would agree that they have formed a habit. Whether that’s good or bad is highly dependent on the repeated behavior.

So, in the spirit of clarity, we’ll define addictive in the following way: physiological or psychological dependence, as on a substance.

Examining use patterns in humans and studies in nonhuman primates suggest that psilocybin possesses little or no abuse liability.

Human Hallucinogen Research: Guidelines for Safety, J Psychopharmacol. 2008 Aug; 22(6): 603–620.

In that sense, magic mushrooms are not addictive. In fact, humans experience a short-term but strong tolerance to psilocybin, even after a single dosage. For example: suppose you attended a psilocybin-assisted therapy session today and were administered 3 grams of full-spectrum psilocybin containing fungi (i.e., raw dried mushrooms).

Now, if you were to return again tomorrow and consumed the same amount, you wouldn’t have the same feelings—the psychedelic experience would be substantially less pronounced. Taking a higher dosage wouldn’t help much either.

This built in “regulator” in psilocybin-containing fungi means that not only are magic mushrooms not addictive, their effects can’t even be repeatedly experienced. This is why many people involved in psilocybin-assisted therapy have their sessions spread out over sometimes long stretches of time.

While psilocybin-assisted therapy is still a relatively new field in the medical community, some patients have reported only undergoing a sessions once per year—and that alone is enough for them to enjoy the many substantial benefits of psilocybin.

Let’s take a look at some of those benefits now:

The Benefits of Psilocybin Are Becoming Increasingly Well-Documented By the Scientific and Medical Communities

magic mushroom safety

As we’ve covered extensively here on Quality Spores, the scientific and medical research communities are rapidly uncovering the benefits of psilocybin for therapeutic applications; clinical trials have indicated that the compound may show significant promise in treating pain, migraines, headaches, dementia, PTSD, anxiety, depression, trauma, certain kinds of addiction, and general mental health.

If you’d like to learn about these purported benefits in more detail, we invite you to see our page about the benefits of magic mushrooms. These benefits are gained largely thanks in part to how magic mushrooms affect your brain. Psilocybin is converted into psilocin, which causes a psychedelic experience. New neural pathways can be formed, which may help in “overriding” old habits and forming new ones.

With the help of a licensed psilocybin-assisted therapy practitioner, this process has been show to be beneficial for many patients in jurisdictions where these kinds of therapy are legal, or in clinical trials at approved institutions such as Johns Hopkins.

In addition to learning more about how magic mushrooms work and figuring out the best ways to eat or take magic mushrooms, these researchers are also discovering how fresh vs dried mushrooms impact patients; generally patients in clinical trials are consuming synthetic psilocybin, which is easier to dose.

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However, for those patients who prefer or are participating in clinical trials where full-spectrum psilocybin is administered—that is, the whole fungi—dried mushrooms are generally used instead of fresh (or “wet”) mushrooms. This is because dosage, storage, and general use is easier. Since a larger amount of mushrooms can be consumed dry rather than fresh, some patients may also avoid having an upset stomach often associated with “wet” fungi.

Magic Mushroom Side Effects, Long-Term and Short-Term

For most people, any negative side effects experienced after taking magic mushrooms are very much in the realm of the short term—what might colloquially be referred to as a “bad trip.” Otherwise, Psilocybe cubensis safety is very good.

A bad trip on magic mushrooms can involve feelings of anxiety, fear, or stress. Since perceptual changes are part of the psychedelic experience, unpleasant (albeit temporary) changes in the visual system may be incurred, which for some can be distressing. Impairment of thinking can also occur, leading to dangerous behavior—which is why one should only ever undergo psilocybin-assisted therapy with the help of a trained and licensed practitioner.

are magic mushrooms poisonous

As for long term mushroom side effects on health, the persons most at risk are those with preexisting psychotic disorders, such as schizophrenia or bipolar I or II. In the vast majority of cases, persons with these disorders should never take psychedelic drugs, psilocybin or otherwise. Those with first or second degree family members who have these disorders may also wish to abstain.

We mention the above mostly for completeness; the reality is that millions of people in the United States alone have consumed so-called “magic mushrooms” since the 1950s. However, it would be fair to say that nothing in life is “guaranteed” to be safe—so do your own research and make sure you know what you’re getting into with the help of a licensed medical practitioner before undergoing psilocybin-assisted therapy.

Remember, the magic mushroom drug classification is Schedule I. Are magic mushrooms class B? No, they’re Class A! Magic mushrooms are illegal in most of the United States and elsewhere (although spores are not); while this may change in the future, it’s true at the time of this writing. Please check with your local jurisdiction before making any bad decisions!

How to Study Psilocybin Mushroom Spores at Home, Legally

Psilocybin mushroom spores are legal in all states other than California, Idaho, and Georgia. Individuals living in any of the other 47 states are legally able to order magic mushroom spores for research purposes; they’re a popular taxonomical challenge for at-home microscopists and amateur mycologists.

If that describes you, please feel free to visit our shop and browse our wide selection of magic mushroom spore strains!

If you’d like to learn more about magic mushrooms, psilocybin and its fascinating history and the story of how it came to the western world, the life cycle of fungi, and much, much more, we invite you to download our completely free eBook for microscopists and mycologists, Mushrooms, Psilocybin, and YOU, available below:

Mushrooms, Psilocybin and YOU ebook by Quality Spores


Get answers to your questions about mushroom spore legalities and discover the long history of our relationship with mushrooms. It is a great primer to get started in the world of mushroom spore microscopy and premium spores.

In addition to your free copy of the report, you’ll also get signed up to the Quality Spores mailing list so that you can receive additional information about amateur microscopy, mushroom spores, and even special coupons, discounts, and important site announcements. You definitely don’t want to miss it!