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Can You Mix Psychedelic Mushrooms With Adderall & Stimulants?

Considering the potential risks and benefits of combining psychedelic mushrooms with stimulants like Adderall remains a topic of interest, particularly as anecdotal reports suggest a connection between psilocybin microdosing and tapering off stimulant medications. 

This concept is gaining momentum, with some individuals exploring psilocybin microdosing as a strategy to mitigate withdrawal symptoms during the transition away from stimulant medications.

Maybe you want to have a therapeutic psychedelic experience, but you take prescribed Adderall everyday and are unsure of the safety of mixing the two, or maybe you are just curious about how these two classes of drugs would interact with each other.

Since psychedelics are being explored by researchers for their potential benefits on a wide variety of symptoms and conditions, including anxiety, depression, and even ADHD, many are searching for safe ways to engage with these medicines.

“41.4 million Adderall prescriptions were dispensed in the U.S. in 2021, up more than 10% from 2020” (Pandey, 2022), and this statistic is startlingly rising given the medication’s potential for abuse.

While psilocybin in particular seems promising for Attention-deficit/hyperactivity Disorder, it may be challenging for those already on ADHD medications to make the switch should it be approved as a mainstream treatment.

Whether out of pure curiosity or a genuine necessity, we hope this article helps to clarify whether or not it is safe to take psychedelics while on Adderall or other stimulants.

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For harm-reduction purposes, we provide links to online psilocybin vendors, local stores, delivery services, and spore vendors for growing your own medicine at home.

Key Takeaways

  • Adderall and Ritalin are stimulants that affect norepinephrine and dopamine, while psychedelics target serotonin receptors, leading to distinct effects.
  • Stimulant medications pose significant risks, including abuse potential, whereas psychedelics are generally safer and less likely to lead to dependency.
  • Combining stimulants and psychedelics’ safety is uncertain, necessitating more research. Anecdotal reports suggest relative safety with Adderall and psilocybin, but we advise against it due to safety concerns and potential efficacy issues.
  • Psychedelic Passage: Your Psychedelic Concierge — The easy, legal way to find trustworthy psilocybin guides, facilitators, and psychedelic assisted therapy near you in the United States.

What is Adderall? The Effects of Stimulants vs. Psychedelics 

Adderall is a powerful nervous system stimulant—a combination of amphetamine and dextroamphetamine—which is commonly prescribed to treat conditions like ADHD and narcolepsy

It, along with other stimulant prescriptions, increases someone’s ability to focus and perform tasks through stimulating the central nervous system. Adderall specifically is most often taken in tablet form. 

In particular, “stimulants enhance attention, memory, self-regulation and executive function in individuals with ADHD” through increasing the activity of certain monoamines in the brain (Weyandt et al., 2018). 

Monoamines or monoamine neurotransmitters are a class of chemical messengers which communicate with receptors in the brain and gut. Examples of monoamines are serotonin and the catecholamines like adrenaline, norepinephrine, and dopamine. 

Adderall works by:

  • Stimulating the release of monoamines
  • Blocking the reuptake of monoamines
  • Inhibiting monoamine oxidase which is responsible for the breakdown of monoamines (Evans, 2019) 

Most importantly, monoamines are associated with the regulation of a variety of bodily functions and sensations including body temperature, pain perception, gratification, hormonal regulation, digestion, sleep, and a number of other autonomic functions.  

Aside from prescribed usage, Adderall is also “extensively abused and has a host of adverse and potential long-term effects” when used illicitly and recreationally for performance enhancement (Geoffrion et al., 2023). 

This potential for abuse continues to be an issue for college students and young people who use it for performance enhancement in work and school, including the medical community, with Adderall use on the rise even recreationally.  

However, when it comes to psychedelics, they have disparate effects on the brain, body, and overall mental state in comparison to stimulants. 

These differences stem from variations in their chemical makeup and how they interact with neurotransmitters like serotonin, dopamine, and norepinephrine as well as their receptors in the brain. 

Firstly, Psychedelics like LSD (lysergic acid diethylamide), psilocybin (found in psilocybe mushrooms), and DMT (dimethyltryptamine) primarily interact with the serotonin system in the brain. 

They do this by targeting the 5-HT2A serotonin receptors, producing their effects by mimicking or enhancing serotonin’s activity.  

This leads to profound alterations in perception, often resulting in vivid hallucinations, altered sense of time, and heightened sensory experiences. 

To further understand how psychedelics affect the brain, check out our article which covers that topic in more depth. 

On the other hand, stimulants are a class of drug that “increase the activity of the central nervous system” (Farzam et al., 2023) and “speed up the body’s systems” (DEA, 2020). 

Common stimulants include amphetamines (such as Adderall), methylphenidate (Ritalin), and caffeine.  

Stimulants work by increasing the levels of neurotransmitters like dopamine, norepinephrine, and to a lesser extent, serotonin, and these neurotransmitters are involved in the brain’s reward and pleasure pathways as well as in focus and arousal.  

While psychedelics mimic endogenous serotonin in the brain, stimulants interact more so with receptors for neurotransmitters like dopamine and norepinephrine. 

Lastly, psychedelics tend to have a lower potential for physical harm and no risk for addiction compared to stimulants, while stimulants can lead to addiction and health concerns when abused or used without medical supervision. 

Side Effects of Adderall 

  • Loss of appetite
  • Weight loss
  • Stomach upset
  • Nausea
  • Vomiting
  • Dizziness
  • Headache
  • Diarrhea
  • Fever
  • Anxiety or nervousness
  • Sleeping disturbances 
  • Insomnia

Contraindications of Adderall

  • Addiction and drug abuse
  • Cardiovascular disease
  • Anxiety
  • Glaucoma
  • Arteriosclerosis
  • Hyperthyroidism
  • Hypertension
  • MAOIs
  • Anorexia nervosa and eating disorders
  • Bipolar disorder
  • Depression
  • Psychosis, schizophrenia, or mania
  • Raynaud’s syndrome
  • Seizures
  • Tourette’s syndrome

Those potential contraindications should be monitored closely when dosing with Adderall and similar stimulants, although some have been shown as safe in certain instances.

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The Efficacy of Stimulants Compared to Psilocybin 

In comparing the efficacy of stimulant drugs like Adderall and psychedelics like psilocybin, the nuances of their neurocognitive effects and their potential implications for academic performance and mental well-being are brought to light. 

In Weyandt and colleagues’ 2018 study, they found through extensive research that Adderall can impair working memory performance and may adversely affect individuals’ self-perceived cognitive abilities and self-regulation capabilities.  

They also found that, despite its attention-enhancing properties, Adderall diminishes confidence in problem-solving, task completion, and social interactions, notably under academic stressors, after intake.  

And problematically, the use of stimulant drugs like Adderall has now been linked to increased task-related stress, possibly motivating students to resort to these substances during challenging academic periods.  

Lastly, they found that, when it comes to cognitive performance, oral reading and story recall were unaffected by Adderall, suggesting its neutral impact on certain academic tasks. 

Furthermore, Individuals diagnosed with Attention-Deficit/Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD) exhibit “reduced inhibition of the default mode network (DMN) during cognitive tasks” (Silberstein et al., 2018). 

The DMN has proven to be an important element of brain functioning in assessing particular pathologies such as clinical depression and ADHD.  

This pattern of brain activity is associated with self-referential thoughts, rumination, and non-present modes of thinking, and is hyperactive in those with clinical depression and ADHD. 

Both serotonergic psychedelics, like psilocybin, and Adderall have been observed to inhibit the DMN following administration.

Given these commonalities, this information could suggest that psychedelics are an effective ADHD treatment through modulating the DMN during task performance and enhancing task-related focus.

Should I Take Adderall & Magic Mushrooms at the Same Time?  

The notion of combining psychedelic mushrooms with stimulants such as Adderall raises questions about potential risks and benefits, yet a definitive consensus remains unknown. 

Little to no comprehensive research has been conducted on the combination of these two substances, but anecdotal reports seem to largely suggest that, depending on the dosage and setting, they could be safe. 

One recurring concern highlighted by users revolves around overstimulation and its adverse consequences, including the loss of focus and an uptick in body anxiety. 

Because of differences in the ways in which each individual metabolizes and reacts to various substances, it is likely a highly nuanced issue. 

To put it plainly: It is likely safe to combine the use of Adderall and psilocybe mushrooms, but we don’t recommend it. 

Not only can the stimulating effects of Adderall lead to panic, anxiety, and a higher risk of high blood pressure or adverse physical symptoms, it also potentially tampers with the pure effects of the psilocybin. 

Another concern to take note of is the fact that, any psychedelic involving an MAO inhibitor has been contraindicated for Adderall in the past, but the issue of MAOIs and stimulants still seems up for debate.

There is an argument to be made that psilocybin microdoses offer a potentially safer route in treating ADHD, with positive neuro compensatory changes that are otherwise absent in stimulant medications. 

Two papers, from 2021 and 2022, out of the University of British Columbia, have shown that self-reporters experienced key benefits, including improvements in motivation, focus, concentration, and mood, along with subsequent reductions in measures of depression, anxiety, and stress.

Overall, if you are looking to experiment with psychedelics like psilocybin mushrooms, it is best to do so in an intentional and pure way, so that the medicine can truly do its work without the influences of other substances. 

Interestingly, anecdotal narratives also suggest a potential connection between psilocybin microdosing and the process of tapering off stimulant medications such as Ritalin or Adderall. This process is gaining momentum as more people vocalize support and success. 

Some individuals have explored introducing a psilocybin microdose during this transition, purportedly aiding in mitigating withdrawal symptoms. 

However, it’s imperative to underscore the importance of professional guidance during such transitions to ensure a safe and effective trajectory.

Microdosing Psilocybin or Full Journeys with Psychedelic Passage 

Whether you are seeking alternatives to your ADHD medication and figuring out how to taper onto something new or you are engaging with these substances recreationally, we encourage you to utilize our resources and services.

Being supported by a psychedelic expert greatly reduces risks associated and also encourages positive and prepared exploration. 

Here at Psychedelic Passage, we connect you with our network of pre-vetted psychedelic facilitators who are located all over the country. Our network gives you access to tailored support throughout the entire psychedelic process. 

During the preparation stage, facilitators provide health screenings and offer preparation support to help you set intentions and mitigate pre-trip anxiety.

They also provide day-of and integration support for a safe journey and meaningful results. Our aim is to provide accessible safety services around psychedelic use. 

Find Confidence and Clarity with Psychedelic Passage’s Guidance

Hi there! We sincerely hope that you’ve found valuable takeaways that resonate with your current intentions. To explore research-based education, stay updated with psychedelic news, and benefit from practical how-to articles, we encourage you to head over to our resources page.

If you’re seeking personalized advice and are prepared to take the first step toward a therapeutic psychedelic experience, we invite you to book a consultation with our team of experienced psychedelic concierges or to fill out a matchmaking form.

This is an opportunity to be matched with a trustworthy local facilitator. You’ll be seamlessly connected to our rigorously vetted network of psychedelic guides, ensuring potential matches align with your needs.

Psychedelic Passage offers confidence and peace of mind by alleviating the burden of having to guess who’s right for you. If you want to discover how Psychedelic Passage can help you, we empower you to learn more about our services and check out client testimonials from those who’ve gone before you.

Your healing path is uniquely yours, and our commitment is to serve you at every juncture. Psychedelic Passage: Your Psychedelic Concierge — The easy, legal way to find trustworthy psilocybin guides, facilitators and psychedelic coaching near you in the United States.

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Frequently Asked Questions: Stimulants, Adderall, & Psychedelics 

1. Are There Potential Interactions Between Psychedelics and Stimulants?

Yes, combining psychedelics with stimulants can be unpredictable and possibly dangerous. Stimulants may intensify the effects of psychedelics, leading to an overwhelming experience or increased anxiety and agitation.

While there is no specific documented contraindication, it is best to use these substances independently or atleast work with them in a safe way when it comes to proper dosing, tapering, timing, and support. 

2. Can I Use Psychedelics to Counteract Stimulant Side Effects?

Using psychedelics to counteract stimulant side effects is not recommended. Both substances affect the brain differently and their combination can lead to unpredictable outcomes and potential health risks.

There are no known or documented benefits on stimulant side effects when it comes to psychedelics or psilocybin. 

3. Will Taking Adderall After a Psychedelic Experience Affect the Results?

Taking Adderall after a psychedelic experience may affect the results, specifically those associated with the afterglow period. Once the psychedelic trip is over, it is best to allow an integration period before jumping into other substances.

However, it’s crucial to prioritize mental and physical well-being when considering any substance use. If you need to immediately get back on a prescription for Adderall because of a health condition, be sure to consult professional support.

References:

  1. Adderall effects, risks, and dangers: Short and long term. American Addiction Centers. (2024, February 7). https://americanaddictioncenters.org/adderall/long-term-effects  
  2. Adderall shortage puts U.S. on brink of public health crisis. (n.d.-a). https://www.axios.com/2022/11/15/adderall-shortage-adhd-diagnosis-prescriptions  
  3. Drug fact sheet: Stimulants. (n.d.-b). https://www.dea.gov/sites/default/files/2020-06/Stimulants-2020.pdf  
  4. Farzam, K. (2023, July 2). Stimulants. StatPearls [Internet]. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/books/NBK539896/#:~:text=The%20term%20stimulants%20cover%20a,medical%20benefits,%20and%20recreational%20purposes  
  5. Mostowy, S. (2019, May 1). The widespread reach and possible physiological effects of adderall. Institute of Neuro Innovation. https://inifoundation.org/neuroscience-anthology-1/2019/4/29/the-widespread-reach-and-possible-physiological-effects-of-adderall  
  6. Weyandt, L. L., White, T. L., Gudmundsdottir, B. G., Nitenson, A. Z., Rathkey, E. S., De Leon, K. A., & Bjorn, S. A. (2018, June 27). Neurocognitive, autonomic, and mood effects of adderall: A pilot study of healthy college students. Pharmacy (Basel, Switzerland). https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC6165228/ 
  7. Plumber, N., Majeed, M., Ziff, S., Thomas, S. E., Bolla, S. R., & Gorantla, V. R. (2021, May 22). Stimulant usage by medical students for cognitive enhancement: A systematic review. Cureus. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC8216643/ 

  8. Rootman, J. M., Kryskow, P., Harvey, K., Stamets, P., Santos-Brault, E., Kuypers, K. P. C., Polito, V., Bourzat, F., & Walsh, Z. (2021, November 18). Adults who microdose psychedelics report health related motivations and lower levels of anxiety and depression compared to non-microdosers. Nature News. https://www.nature.com/articles/s41598-021-01811-4 

 
Picture of Dr. John Moos, MD

Dr. John Moos, MD

Dr. John Moos is a former Trauma and Acute Care Surgeon with over two decades of experience across several hospitals, including Sutter Health Memorial Medical Center and North Valley Hospital District. He earned his medical degree from the University of California, Davis School of Medicine, followed by postgraduate training at Keck School of Medicine at USC, where he served as Chief Resident in General Surgery.

Transitioning from trauma surgeon to trauma healer, John felt called to put the scalpel down. He embraced holistic healing practices and founded Soul Surgeon MD, a psychedelic healing sanctuary in Los Angeles. As a member of the Psychedelic Medicine Association and The American Society of Ketamine Physicians, Psychotherapists, and Practitioners, he now focuses on integrating psychedelic therapies into his unique healing framework.

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