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How microdosing psilocybin may mitigate the uncomfortable effects of COVID-19

No matter where you are, no matter who you are- you have in some way felt the effects that COVID-19 has had on our globe. Whether this crisis has affected you positively or negatively is merely a byproduct of the worldwide impact that the novel coronavirus has had on every member of the human race.

From economic disturbances, to changes in the way we interact with one another, there are few aspects of “normal life” that the virus hasn’t touched. Anxieties, stress levels, and depressive behaviors have reached all-time highs. Relationships, even those with our spouses or children, have been put to the test and pressed the bounds of our mental fortitudes. Couple this with the fact that many standard mental health outlets, like going to the gym, socializing at the pub, or just taking a quick road trip, have all but been lost. Largely due to realistic fears regarding continued viral transmission and the possibility of overburdening healthcare systems.

In essence, it’s difficult to even discuss COVID-19 without feeling like a Debbie Downer. It’s rare that new scientific discovery regarding the virus’s’ habits is ever what someone would consider “good news”. Even talk of reopening or pending social engagements seems to have a tone of discontent. Rerouting enjoyment through several filters of fear and caution before ever actually getting to the experience of the thing. Which leaves many asking: “What am I supposed to do about it?”

Microdosing: Canada, COVID, and Mental Health

When it comes to microdosing for mental health, Canada isn’t necessarily the world leader, but it’s definitely a country worth looking at. Following the passing of favorable marijuana legislation, the country has been able to assuage many dusty and outmoded fears about recreational drugs having little benefit to society. Which many are now taking that momentum and applying it to other historically “entertainment purposes only” drugs. Namely, psilocybin.

Canada has long been on the forefront of “alternative” thinking as far as big government goes. Perhaps it’s the nationalized healthcare system, or the fact that their citizens are just that much closer to the earth that connects us all. Whatever the case may be, Canada has become near synonymous with microdosing research, becoming a favored spot to look for scientists and enthusiasts alike. If COVID-19 has served any amount of good news to us, it’s perhaps that we’ve now seen, with wide-eyed realization that “normal” wasn’t working. Normal wasn’t sustainable.

The long practiced mechanisms of standard daily life have all but failed most of us during the time of pandemic. Created a widespread sense of loss, and left many dealing with mental health crises that are similar to those experienced by people who suffer with intensive PTSD. Creating a global bereavement that is hard to quantify. Many health officials warn that it won’t just be the medical providers and covid survivors that will fall prey to this overwhelming sense of loss- but everyone. As we all individually grieve for a life that was.

Buy Shrooms: Canada Discusses Aftermath of COVID-19

Not just Canada, but governments and authority figures across the world have begun to warn their citizens of the impending mental fallout that COVID will most likely bring in its wake. Pressing for more health conscious and mindful activities now, before the real mental anguish sets in. The Canadaian government has gone as far as suggesting mindfulness practices to people who feel they may be suffering from the anxiety and stress that this pandemic has caused, but other denizens of the country have a different plan: Consider psychedelics.

Microdosing is essentially a practice in which someone takes sub-hallucinogenic doses of psilocybin according to a microdosing schedule. This has been reported to help center and focus some individuals, who also note an increase in motivation and positive thinking. Shrooms have long been touted for their powers of spirituality and healing, but it can often be difficult to integrate a full on trip into daily routines, which is where microdosing may present a better structure for individuals that are beholden to more stringent schedules or codes of conduct. Or, simply feel more comfortable tackling their mental health issues on a more incremental scale.

Psilocybin, once it has been metabolized in the body begins to mimic a familiar face amongst modulators of mood- serotonin. While the actions that psilocybin takes once broken down and absorbed by the body are many, nearly all of these actions have to do with the various neurotransmitters that are heavily involved with cognition and mood regulation. Meaning that small doses of psilocybin could be expected to act as an excellent treatment for people who find themselves acutely affected by COVID-19 and the excess stress that it has brought with it.

They could also point to a more affordable option for people living south of Canada’s lush borders. As the fatal dose of psilocybin is a near laughable amount, couple with evidence of a high therapeutic index and low incidence of unsavory side effects, psilocybin could prove to be an effective treatment for a huge number of people, specifically those that fall through the cracks when traditional methods don’t work.

Quick Microdosing Guide: COVID and Microdosing

There has also been a small amount of suggestion that psilocybin could reasonably help to mitigate inflammatory response mechanisms, with one Canadian company pressing for psilocybin use as a treatment for Rheumatoid arthritis. Something that could reasonably point toward future COVID-19 treatments, although the supporting research for this effect is still a long way from being solid.

Other countries, such as the US and even in the UK, have fielded reports of experts and academics calling for relaxed laws regarding the use of psilocybin containing mushrooms to help tackle this impending mental health crisis. Many suggesting that research into microdosing schedules be better funded, to help integrate old-fashioned attitudes with a growing body of evidence that suggests the non-hallucinogenic concentrations would be beneficial.

In effect, most microdosing guides suggest that hopeful microdosers take roughly 1/20th of a hallucinogenic dose, which research suggests is anywhere from 2 to 5 grams for an average body size. But, as the compound interacts differently with most people, it’s important to discover your personal therapeutic dose, by taking the smallest noticeable dose and working down slightly from there. Essentially, if 2mg produces noticeable effects, but 1mg does not- somewhere between the two is an ideal dose for the purpose of microdosing. Once a therapeutic dose has been found, many guides suggest sticking to a routine of once a day/5 days with 2 days off, or once a day every other day. Both for short durations of a few weeks to a few months. Microdosing guides will vary depending on where they are sourced, but a common thread among all is small amounts combined with “on again, off again” schedules. Curating each microdosing regime to the needs of those experiencing it.