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Sounds Like: MESS.kuh.lin

Classification: psychedelic protoalkaloid

Controlled Substance Act Schedule: I

Other names for Mescaline

  • big chief
  • blue caps
  • buttons
  • cactus
  • media luna
  • mesc
  • peyote
  • 3,4,5-Trimethoxyphenethylamine

Mescaline Addiction

Chronic use of mescaline builds tolerance fast, but that tolerance would only last for a few days if the user were to quit suddenly. The body excretes about half of the original dosage after six hours, albeit unmetabolized excrescence according to some studies. The drug’s effects usually don’t start until between one and two hours after that initial dosage was administered either. Mescaline causes cross-tolerance, however, with other serotonergic psychedelics like LSD. The effects of Mescaline are also similar to those of LSD. That said, no concrete data has shown that physical addiction is possible for mescaline users, but psychological dependence is regularly reported for the drug.

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Intended Use of Mescaline

Primarily via influence from Native American traditions, mescaline has been suggested as medical treatment for alcoholism and depression. Medical science has provided the medical rationale that this would be because those disorders correlate with serotonin deficiencies, which mescaline would inherently counterbalance. On the other hand, the drug’s status as a Schedule I controlled substance means the U.S. Food and Drug Administration views it as a substance with little to no medical value despite high risk. This has made it a controversial drug that’s difficult for researchers to acquire, so little data has accrued on the subject since the 1970s.

How Mescaline Is Taken

Mescaline is only ever administered orally as a tablet.

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Side Effects of

Mescaline induces a psychedelic state like that of LSD or psilocybin, but mescaline’s high is unique due to altered thought patterns and the intensity of resultant hallucinations both with eyes closed and eyes open. It modifies one’s sense of time and self-awareness, too. The visual effects are supposedly kaleidoscopic and even more so when the eyes are closed or in dim or dark lighting conditions. Effects can last for up to 12 hours.

  • Synesthesia
  • Euphoria
  • Hallucinations
  • Nausea

Signs of an
Addiction to Mescaline

Cravings compelling you to form habits in connection with the use of the drug

Inability to stop taking the drug

Growing interest in finding drugs with effects similar to mescaline like PCP

Prioritizing use over spending time with family or friends

Abuse Facts

Mescaline is believed to be a drug with a uniquely American history, having been utilized by the Aztecs in Mesoamerica who called it Peyote and revered it as a sacred plant that they thought could provide an access point to the spirit world. To this day, peyote is an essential mechanism of the Aztecan spiritual traditions.

Effects very widely from person to person based on the emotional state they were in before use and the size of the dosage they took. It also affects those who have developed tolerances for other hallucinogens differently from how it affects those who haven’t.

A consistent observation of mescaline use among those with mental illness is that mescaline greatly exacerbates psychosis or can even cause it. Some mescaline experiences can be traumatic even for those without mental illness diagnoses but especially for those with such diagnoses.

Lead guitarist, songwriter and singer for The Grateful Dead, Jerry Garcia used mescaline before starting the band but then switched to LSD and DMT because they were less nauseating.