What happens when you mix psychedelics with cannabis? How do these psychoactive drugs interact with one another in the human body?
These were the questions asked by researchers at the international journal Psychopharmacology. A recent study published in the journal found, “The simultaneous use of cannabis together with classic serotonergic psychedelics was associated with more intense psychedelic experience across a range of measures.”
The researchers found these results by aggregating data from an online survey. They would send out an initial survey to individuals seven days prior to the day they decided to partake in a psychedelic experience and then would send a second survey one day after the psychedelic experience. Among the respondents, 39.3% of those surveyed took cannabis during their psychedelic experience.
“We found evidence of more intense mystical-type, ego dissolution and visual experiences in conjunction with cannabis use,” the researchers explained.
Mystical-type experiences refer to strong emotions often felt in psychedelic experiences, associated with positive moods, feelings of unity and a sense of sacredness. Ego dissolution refers to the experience of losing one’s self-identity, rather seeing oneself as part of a greater community of people.
In addition, taking a low or moderate amount of cannabis created heightened psychedelic experiences. The study examined additional research, finding different kinds of psychoactive substances are often used together in order to mitigate unpleasant side effects such as dysphoria.
The study tracked individuals on a fear scale and found those partaking in high doses of cannabis were more likely to have a fearful response to their psychedelic experience.
The online survey consisted of 321 individuals. Among those individuals, 50.2% were taking LSD, 29.3% took psilocybin commonly found in magic mushrooms and 11.8% took ayahuasca.
“We are mindful not to be too hasty in inferring that cannabis use directly caused these effects,” the researchers explained, “and thus will explore different explanations for our findings, including, first, the possibility that cannabis may indeed have had a direct effect.”
The impact cannabis has to boost a psychedelic experience may be due to its own ability to create euphoric feelings, which can feel similar to some psychedelics.