Some magic mushroom enthusiasts support smoking shrooms. According to these individuals, smoking the mushrooms (normally in conjunction with eating them) enhances the trip. Naturally, other fans of shroom trips which take the fungus the conventional way might wonder if they are missing out on something. Which leads to two questions. The first is, can you smoke mushrooms? The short answer is yes. The second question is, should you smoke them? The short answer: probably not.
The longer answer is that not a lot of research has been done on the effects of smoking shrooms. The evidence supporting the consumption of shrooms by smoking them is mostly anecdotal. However, there is a lot of evidence that eating mushrooms work just fine, and smoking them almost certainly works less well. Orally consuming magic mushrooms is the most efficient way to trip, and there are other reasons smoking probably is not the best idea as well. For one, mushrooms are usually smoked with other substances, such as tobacco or cannabis, which can alter a trip for the worse. Second, spores from the mushroom can become lodged in the throat or lungs if the fungus is smoked, possibly causing suffocation. Finally, igniting the mushroom destroys the mushroom's psychoactive components, so there is no real point.
Smoking shrooms is certainly possible. Magic mushrooms can be smoked if they are dried and then ground into a powder. They are then normally rolled into a joint along with another substance, like cannabis or tobacco.
Some psychedelic fans like to smoke and eat mushrooms at the same time, believing the combination improves the strength of the trip. Other psychedelic smoking advocates claim that smoking shrooms temper the intense psychoactive high that the fungus normally produces for a more mellow effect. Smoking mushrooms supposedly leads to feelings of euphoria, enlightenment, and insight. Some shroom smokers say that inhaling the fungus guarantees a good trip, increasing creativity, uplifting moods, and heightening the senses to inspire feelings of awe while taking in the world.
The reason that cannabis can be either smoked or eaten is that it has to go through a process called decarboxylation in order to have an effect. The desirable cannabinoids, like THC and CBD, start out as THCA and CBDA, which are inactive. To decarboxylate the cannabinoids within the plant and get them ready for consumption, the cannabis must be heated, burning off the excess carboxyl group and turning the acids into THC and CBD so their full effects can be enjoyed. When smoked, the decarboxylation process occurs when the joint or bowl is lit by a lighter. When making edibles, the cannabis must first be baked to activate the weed's cannabinoids.
Magic mushrooms, on the other hand, operate very differently. Shrooms contain the psychoactive compound psilocybin. This chemical is what distorts time perception, enhances the vividness of colors, sharpens hearing, and creates the euphoric feeling that comes with a shroom trip. Psilocybin combusts at 180℃ or 356℉. Cannabis and tobacco, on the other hand, burns between 500℃ and 900℃, or 932℉ and 1652℉. While cannabis may be activated by being smoked, psilocybin burns away, and no high is produced. While some shroom smokers still claim that smoking helps enhance the high, there is no concrete evidence of that. Some argue that magic mushrooms can be smoked at low enough temperatures to have an effect, but even so, the high is comparatively weak and does not last as long as it would if the shrooms were eaten instead.
Smoking shrooms actually comes with a few risks that are not present if they are just eaten. The main risk is that spores, or airborne fungi, can become lodged in the throat and lungs. Spores that get stuck can lead to inflammation in the throat and chest, and possibly cause choking. Once they are stuck, spores might also require a long and uncomfortable medical procedure to remove.
Also, since people usually smoke mushrooms along with some other substance and often eat mushrooms at the same time, the mingling of chemicals could lead to a very bad trip. Some negative effects might include paranoia, anxiety, vomiting, fear, confusion, headaches, and large gaps in memory. While normally the chances of having a bad trip after taking shrooms are very low if they are simply eaten. with only 14% of people having a bad experience after eating 3.2 grams according to one study, the chances of a bad trip go up when other substances like cannabis or tobacco are introduced.
Put simply, there's no good reason to smoke shrooms. People argue that smoking and eating shrooms at the same time produce a more effective high, but there is no concrete evidence to support that theory. Some also say that smoking shrooms mellow the trip, which is probably true since smoking a joint at temperatures higher than 180℃ inactivates the chemical that produces psychedelic effects. Still, it is just as easy to simply take a lower dose. Plus, smoking mushrooms can lead to spores blocking airways and negative interactions with any other substance the shrooms are smoked with.
Overall, there are no good reasons to smoke shrooms and several reasons not to. It's best to ingest them the normal way.