Treatment for Psilocybin Mushroom Addiction
How to Approach a Psilocybin Addict
It can be difficult to watch someone you care about struggle with a psilocybin or “magic mushrooms” addiction. Your loved one may engage in self-destructive behaviors and isolate themselves from others. Oftentimes, individuals with substance addictions are in denial about their problematic patterns of use. Fortunately, there are several structured options for concerned individuals to consider when approaching a psilocybin addict.
Formalized strategies that can be used to encourage an individual with a psilocybin addiction into treatment include the following:
- Contacting a local mental health treatment provider. Often, individuals who are concerned about a loved one with an addiction do not know where to begin. The first step may be the most important. In these cases, it is often advisable to contact a local mental health treatment provider who specializes in addiction treatment. The treatment provider can make an objective determination as to what course of action to take. This may involve the treatment provider meeting with the person or the formation of a team to perform an intervention.
- Performing an intervention: In this context, an intervention occurs when a group of close friends or family members of an addict approaches an individual and attempts to persuade them to get treatment.1 Individuals suffering with addiction are more likely to engage in treatment if significant others are involved in the intervention process.1 Successful interventions are organized, are overseen by professional interventionists or professional addiction treatment specialists, and serve to approach individuals in a caring and non-confrontational manner.
- CRAFT: An alternative to standard interventions is the Community Reinforcement and Family Training Model (CRAFT), which is a comprehensive approach designed to help concerned significant others (CSOs) navigate a loved one’s addiction and ultimately increase treatment engagement.3 The program assists the CSO by helping them to learn their role in their loved one’s addiction and teaches them how to positively motivate the family member into treatment. Finally, CRAFT teaches family members and friends how to take care of themselves so that they can fully support their loved one in the healthiest manner.
Can You Get Addicted to Shrooms?
To date, there is little evidence to suggest that individuals who use psilocybin long-term develop physical dependence on the drug. Tolerance, on the other hand, does most likely develop in individuals who use the drug repeatedly.6 However, there is no evidence that a withdrawal syndrome occurs in these individuals.
It is important to understand, though, that a person does not have to develop physical dependence in order to have an addiction to the hallucinogen. Addiction is characterized by problematic substance use despite negative consequences, and using mushrooms can lead to significant impairment and distress in a user’s life. An individual who meets the formal diagnostic criteria for a substance use disorder (see below) with regards to their use of psilocybin would be diagnosed with what’s known as a hallucinogen use disorder, and they may benefit from a formal treatment program.
What Are the Signs of Magic Mushroom Addiction?
According to a number of sources, the addictive potential of psilocybin is questionable.5,6,7 Still, the United States Drug Enforcement Administration classifies psilocybin as a Schedule I controlled substance along with other substances—such as heroin—which are characterized as having great potential for abuse and for the development of physical and psychological dependence.8
Reliable figures on psilocybin use/abuse are not available. However, in 2014, approximately 1.2 million individuals over the age of 12 reported being current users of psychedelic or hallucinogenic drugs.9 Even if the abuse potential of psilocybin is not as great as that of other drugs, some of these individuals may still develop compulsive behaviors that qualify them as having substance use disorders.
The signs of a psilocybin addiction or, more technically, a hallucinogen use disorder, include:10
- Compulsive psilocybin use despite negative physical and psychological problems.
- Inability to quit or cut down on use.
- Using psilocybin more often or for longer periods of time than originally attended.
- Spending a significant amount of time trying to obtain and use the drug, as well as recovering from its effects.
- Failing to fulfill major obligations at home, school, or work because of psilocybin use.
- Strong cravings or urges to use it.
- Continuing to use psilocybin despite interpersonal and social problems caused by drug use.
- Neglecting previously enjoyed recreational, social, or occupational activities in favor of drug use.
- Taking psilocybin in hazardous situations, such as while driving.
- Continuing to use it despite psychological or physical problems caused or exacerbated by use.
- Needing increasing amounts of psilocybin over time to produce desired effects.
In order to be diagnosed with a psilocybin addiction, the individual must demonstrate 2 or more of the above symptoms within a 12-month period.10
Psilocybin Addiction Treatment Types
You don’t have to battle psilocybin addiction alone. There are a number of different treatment options for those who are addicted to shrooms. Standard treatment protocols for addiction can be combined with specialized adjustments for each individual’s unique needs. Options for magic mushroom addiction treatment may include:
- Inpatient treatment and care: Although there is no current evidence that individuals who chronically use/abuse psilocybin will exhibit any physical dependence on the drug, problematic patterns of use can still develop. Individuals who compulsively abuse psilocybin may benefit from inpatient addiction treatment programs initially. Treatment in inpatient settings helps patients distance themselves from personal and environmental factors that may initiate relapses, allowing them to focus solely on their recovery.
- Dual diagnosis care: Some individuals suffering with psilocybin addiction may additionally suffer from co-occurring mental health disorders, such as depression, anxiety, bipolar disorder, and schizophrenia. Someone with an addiction and a comorbid mental health condition is said to have a dual diagnosis. It’s important that those with dual diagnoses receive comprehensive treatment programs that address both issues simultaneously in order to reduce the risk of relapse.
- Psychotherapy: Those in recovery will benefit from psychotherapy in the form of group therapy, individual therapy, or a combination of both. This allows them to explore the issues that led to their psilocybin abuse. Therapy helps patients to identify warning signs of relapse and utilize coping skills in trigger situations. Additionally, counseling can aid in the development of stress management and relapse prevention skills.
- Social support: An important aspect of recovery from magic mushroom addiction is social support. This can come in the form of family assistance and therapy, community mental health care groups, 12-step groups, or alternative groups such as SMART Recovery.
- Additional Services: Other important supports should be provided as needed. Examples include psychoeducation, peer support, vocational rehabilitation, drug education, relapse prevention groups, and case management.
Find Mushroom Addiction Treatment Programs
If you or a loved one is struggling with magic mushroom addiction, help is available and recovery is possible. Rehab programs are located throughout the U.S., and a variety of treatment types is available. You can use SAMHSA’s Find Treatment tool to search for facilities. Many state government websites will also provide local drug and alcohol resources to those in need. To find your state government’s website, do a web search for your state name and ‘.gov.’
American Addiction Centers (AAC) is a leading treatment provider and has trusted rehab programs across the country. If you or someone you know needs help recovering from psilocybin addiction, please call us free at to find treatment options.
American Addiction Centers maintains a strong partnership with a large group of insurance companies at our addiction treatment facilities. Start the journey to recovery and find out instantly using the form below if your health insurance provider may be able to cover all or part of the cost of rehab and associated therapies.
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