Can I Take Shrooms If I'm Pregnant or Breastfeeding?

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Thanks to the advent of psychedelic-assisted psychotherapy, ketamine, MDMA, psilocybin (also known as shrooms), and LSD are currently being studied for their ability to heal various mental health ailments. This renewed interest in psychedelics empowers many to lean into their curiosity about these substances.

This article will focus on 'shrooms,' sometimes called magic mushrooms, and their impact on pregnant and breastfeeding people. While shrooms have documented mental health benefits, some risks are associated with consuming them.

Read on to learn about shrooms, why people take them, and if you can take them while pregnant or breastfeeding (the neutral and more inclusive term is 'chestfeeding'). 

What Are Shrooms?

Shrooms

Shrooms are formally referred to as psilocybin. They are a form of mushrooms that produce long hallucinogenic episodes when consumed. Each episode can last for about 6 hours and distorts one’s sense of perception, sensory experiences, and overall reality.

When under the influence of shrooms, individuals can see things that aren’t happening, which makes it incredibly dangerous to engage in any activity while under the influence. Some may even find themselves engaging in behavior that is out of character for them.

What Disorders Can Shrooms Treat?

Shrooms can be helpful in the treatment of obsessive-compulsive disorder, depression, and post-traumatic stress disorder. In addition, some research has found it successful in decreasing mental health ailments in terminally ill patients.

Psychedelics in a Therapeutic Setting

When the client begins to engage with the clinician, they will spend the hallucinogenic episode making meaning out of the client’s experience.

When used for psychedelic-assisted psychotherapy, clinicians have perfected the dosage and setting best for administering shrooms. For instance, a trained mental health professional will give the client their dose of mushrooms while in a calm and soothing space. The clinician will invite the client to relax, listen to soft music, and notice the effects of the drug. Rather than engaging the client in talk therapy like a typical psychotherapy session, the clinician will wait for the client to begin speaking to them.

Shrooms Are Illegal for Recreational Purposes

It is illegal to take shrooms recreationally. If you’d like to ingest shrooms under legal circumstances, it is worth looking into the Multidisciplinary Association for Psychedelic Studies (MAPS). They offer information on current clinical trials and emerging research on the healing potential of psychedelic substances.

Can I Take Shrooms If I’m Pregnant?

If you are pregnant, you may wonder if taking shrooms during pregnancy could lead to any harm. This may lead to some pregnant people wondering if they’re a good candidate for taking shrooms.

You Should Not Take Shrooms While Pregnant

However, it is very dangerous and can cause significant harm to the developing fetus. Anything ingested by a pregnant person is inevitably passed along to the fetus. There are no studies on the risks of psilocybin to a developing fetus. Due to this lack of research, it is risky to ingest this drug while pregnant. Furthermore, ingesting an illegal substance while pregnant does run the risk of legal repercussions. 

Can I Take Shrooms If I’m Breastfeeding?

There are no studies on how psychedelics can impact a breastfeeding/chestfeeding infant. It is known that most drugs ingested will pass through the breastmilk, causing the infant to ingest the drug.

However, the acidity of psilocybin suggests it may be less likely to pass through the breast milk. Again, no studies can show how shrooms could impact an infant if they cross into breast milk.

Do Not Take Shrooms While Breastfeeding

Since there is a lack of research on this subject, it is highly advised to avoid shrooms if you are breastfeeding/chestfeeding. Furthermore, since they are a criminalized substance (unless ingested in a clinical trial), taking them while breastfeeding is likely to pose legal issues.

What Are the Risks of Taking Shrooms?

Aside from taking shrooms without knowing the risks to a developing or breast- or chestfeeding infant, there are risks for individuals who would like to take shrooms.

Psychedelic Trips

For example, it is possible to develop hallucinogen-persisting perception disorder (HPDD). This disorder causes someone who recently ingested a hallucinogen to experience a never-ending psychedelic trip. This can significantly impair cognitive functioning and can even be permanent. 

Psychedelics can be strenuous on the body. It may cause nausea, vomiting, or increases in blood pressure. This is particularly dangerous for those with preexisting conditions and, again, is very dangerous for anyone pregnant. 

6 Sources
Verywell Mind uses only high-quality sources, including peer-reviewed studies, to support the facts within our articles. Read our editorial process to learn more about how we fact-check and keep our content accurate, reliable, and trustworthy.
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By Julia Childs Heyl
Julia Childs Heyl, MSW, is a clinical social worker and writer. As a writer, she focuses on mental health disparities and uses critical race theory as her preferred theoretical framework. In her clinical work, she specializes in treating people of color experiencing anxiety, depression, and trauma through depth therapy and EMDR (eye movement desensitization and reprocessing) trauma therapy.