|Summary sheet: DMT|
|Common names||DMT, N,N-DMT, "Dmitry", "The Glory", "The Spirit Molecule"|
|Routes of Administration|
N,N-Dimethyltryptamine (also known as DMT, N,N-DMT, Dmitri, and "The Spirit Molecule") is a classical psychedelic substance of the tryptamine class. Despite being one of the simplest psychedelic compounds, it is known for its unique ability to produce short-lived but intense visionary states and complete hallucinations. It is thought to produce its psychedelic effects by binding to serotonin receptors in the brain, although the precise mechanism is not fully understood.
DMT is present in over 65 species of plants and has been identified as being a normal constituent of human metabolism and an endogenous neurotransmitter in certain rodents. Its presence is also known to be widespread throughout the plant kingdom. Although various theories have been postulated, its neurobiological function has yet to be determined.
Depending on the dosage and method of administration, the effects of DMT can range from mild psychedelic states to powerfully immersive life-altering experiences which are often described as the ultimate displacement from ordinary consciousness in which users report experiencing ineffable spiritual realms or alternate dimensions.
When vaporized or smoked, DMT produces short-lived effects with a very rapid onset that is sometimes described as an "inconceivably high-speed rollercoaster ride." When ingested in combination with a MAOI or RIMA agent, it becomes active orally and significantly longer lasting, immersive, and interactive in nature: this combination is known as ayahuasca. Ayahuasca brews have been used traditionally in South America since at least around the year 1500.
Unlike most highly prohibited substances, DMT is not considered to be addictive or toxic by the scientific community. Nevertheless, unpredictable adverse reactions such as uncontrollable anxiety, delusions and psychosis can always occur, particularly among those predisposed to mental disorders. While these negative reactions or "bad trips" can often be attributed to user inexperience or improper preparation of set and setting, they have been known to happen spontaneously among even highly experienced users as well. It is therefore highly advised to use harm reduction practices if using this substance.
- 1 History and culture
- 2 Chemistry
- 3 Pharmacology
- 4 Subjective effects
- 5 Natural plant sources
- 6 Research
- 7 Toxicity and harm potential
- 8 Legal status
- 9 See also
- 10 External links
- 11 Literature
- 12 References
History and culture
DMT was first synthesized in 1931 by the German chemist Richard Helmuth Fredrick Manske. Its discovery as a natural product is generally credited to Brazilian chemist and microbiologist Oswaldo Gonçalves de Lima who, in 1946, isolated an alkaloid he named nigerina (nigerine) from the root bark of jurema preta (Mimosa tenuiflora).
DMT was unequivocally identified in 1959, when American chemists were provided a sample of Mimosa tenuiflora. In 1955, a team of American chemists led by Evan Horning isolated and formally identified DMT in the seeds and pods of Anadenanthera peregrina.
Since 1955, DMT has been found in a host of organisms: in at least fifty plant species belonging to ten families, and in at least four animal species, including one gorgonian and three mammalian species.
DMT, or N,N-dimethyltryptamine, is a member of a family of organic compounds known as tryptamines. Tryptamines share a core structure consisting of a bicyclic indole heterocycle attached at R3 to an amino group via an ethyl side chain. DMT contains two methyl groups (CH3-) bound to the terminal amine RN at the end of this chain.
DMT has many homologs and analogs from base tryptamines like MET and DPT, to four and five position substituted variants such as 4-PO-DMT (psilocybin), 4-AcO-DMT (psilacetin), 5-HO-DMT (bufotenin), and 5-MeO-DMT.
DMT is a white, pungent-smelling, crystalline solid. It is insoluble in water, but soluble in organic solvents and aqueous acids.
DMT's psychedelic effects are believed to come from its efficacy at the 5-HT2A receptor as a partial agonist. However, the role of these interactions and how they result in the psychedelic experience continues to remain elusive.
In addition to this, N,N-dimethyltryptamine is believed to be an endogenous ligand for the sigma receptor. However, the significance of the sigma-1 receptor remains the subject of ongoing scientific research.
DMT in its smokeable form is reported to be the least mentally inebriating psychedelic. It is due to a lack of perceived intoxication that many people describe DMT as a genuine experience that is actually happening to them. It is worth noting that many people report that smoked DMT is extremely clear-headed in its style and tends to produce less personal insight in comparison to orally active psychedelics such as ayahuasca, LSD and psilocybin due to its short-acting nature.
Disclaimer: The effects listed below are cited from the Subjective Effect Index (SEI), which relies on assorted anecdotal reports and the personal experiences of PsychonautWiki contributors. As a result, they should be taken with a healthy amount of skepticism. It is worth noting that these effects will not necessarily occur in a consistent or reliable manner, although higher doses (common+) are more likely to induce the full spectrum of reported effects. Likewise, adverse effects become much more likely on higher doses and may include serious injury or death.
- Spontaneous bodily sensations - The "body high" of DMT can be described as a pleasurable all-encompassing glow. It maintains a consistent presence that quickly rises with the onset and hits its limit once the peak has been reached. It is capable of becoming very powerful at higher doses and can remain for up to half an hour after the experience itself has ended.
- Changes in felt gravity - At higher breakthrough doses, physical feelings of being launched across vast distances at incredibly high speeds are commonly reported.
- Spatial disorientation
- Changes in felt bodily form
- Physical autonomy
- Nausea - This effect is much less common than it is with 5-MeO-DMT as well as longer-lasting psychedelics like psilocybin mushrooms or mescaline. However, it can still manifest spontaneously and sometimes lead to sudden bouts of vomiting.
- Pupil dilation
- Increased heart rate
- Temperature regulation suppression
- Seizure - This is a very rare effect but is believed to happen in those who are predisposed to them, especially while in physically taxing conditions such as being dehydrated, fatigued or undernourished.
- Drifting (melting, breathing, morphing and flowing) - In comparison to other psychedelics, this effect can be described as highly detailed, slow and smooth in motion and static in its appearance.
- Colour replacement
- Colour shifting
- Colour tinting
- After images
- Scenery slicing
- Symmetrical texture repetition
- Environmental patterning
The visual geometry encountered can be described as more similar in appearance to that of psilocin than LSD. It can be comprehensively described through its variations as intricate in complexity, abstract in form, equally organic and digital in feel, structured in organization, brightly lit, multicoloured in scheme, glossy in shading, equal in sharp and soft edges, large in size, fast in speed, smooth in motion, equal in rounded and angular corners, immersive in depth and consistent in its intensity. At higher doses, it is significantly more likely to result in states of level 8B visual geometry over level 8A.
The geometry present with smokeable DMT is considered by many to be the most profoundly intricate and complex set of visual geometry found within the entirety of the psychedelic experience. In comparison to orally active DMT (ayahuasca), it is significantly more digital in appearance and contains a colour scheme which is similar to LSD and a structured style that resembles a high dose of psilocin (4-HO-DMT).
DMT produces a full range of high level hallucinatory states in a fashion that is more consistent and reproducible than that of any other commonly used psychedelic. These effects include:
- Internal hallucination (autonomous entities; settings, sceneries, and landscapes; perspective hallucinations and scenarios and plots) - DMT produces high level internal hallucinations at appropriate doses more consistently than that of any other psychedelic. They are more common within dark environments and can be comprehensively described through their variations as lucid in believability, interactive in style, new experiences in content, autonomous in controllability, geometry-based in style and almost exclusively of a personal, religious, spiritual, science-fiction, fantasy, surreal, nonsensical or transcendental nature in their overall theme.
- External hallucination (autonomous entities; settings, sceneries, and landscapes; perspective hallucinations and scenarios and plots) - These are more common within dark environments and can be comprehensively described through their variations as lucid in believability, interactive in style, new experiences in content, autonomous in controllability, geometry-based in style and almost exclusively of a personal, religious, spiritual, science-fiction, fantasy, surreal, nonsensical or transcendental nature in their overall theme.
- Analysis enhancement
- Déjà vu
- Ego replacement
- Emotion enhancement
- Cognitive euphoria
- Feelings of impending doom
- Increased music appreciation - This typically occurs only at lower sub-breakthrough doses, and is not as prominent of an effect as it is with longer lasting psychedelics like LSD or psilocybin. Many people prefer to have their DMT experiences in complete silence, other than shutting out perceptual distractions this is often done to prevent a muddled or overwhelming experience.
- Memory suppression
- Mindfulness - This effect tends to occur after the experience has ended and the individual has returned to ordinary waking consciousness, to a sense of presence and sensitivity towards one's inner sensations as well as outer environment.
- Multiple thought streams - This effect tends to manifest in a much more chaotic fashion, in tandem with the sensation of cognitive overload.
- Novelty enhancement
- Personal bias suppression
- Rejuvenation - This effect tends to occur after the experience has ended and the subject has returned to ordinary waking consciousness, often in Near-Death Experience (NDE) variants of a DMT experience.
- Autonomous voice communication
- Time distortion - This effect is a very prominent aspect of the DMT experience, which only tends to last under 15 minutes but is commonly reported to subjectively feel as if it had lasted much longer, in some cases "many lifetimes" or even an "eternity". This particular effect is most prevalent and notable with "breakthrough" experiences.
- Synaesthesia - In its fullest manifestation, this is a very rare and non-reproducible effect. Increasing the dosage can increase the likelihood of this occurring, but seems to only be a prominent part of the experience among those who are already predisposed to synaesthetic states.
- For a number of individuals these effects are consistently more reproducible and powerful with smoked or vaporized DMT than they are with other “classical psychedelics” such as LSD or mescaline, this is most likely due to its very intense but relatively short-lived effects. These components are unique to DMT in that for a majority of its users they are significantly more likely to manifest during "breakthrough" experiences as opposed to sub-breakthrough level experiences.
When smoked or vaporized at moderate to heavy dosages, the DMT experience consistently manifests itself in a progressive sequence which can be described as follows:
1. "Breaking Through"
The first step of a DMT trip is the come up that leads onto an experience commonly referred to as "breaking through." This seems to have at least a few different ways of presenting itself to the user.
The first thing that a person notices is an extremely distinct set of visual enhancements such an increase in visual acuity and colour intensity. This is followed by a sudden onset of high level 3 geometry which increases in its intensity until it envelopes and covers the external environment. These effects are often accompanied by auditory hallucinations such as soft crackling sounds or high pitched extended tones. There is also the possibility of accompanying physical sensations as one "breaks through." These can include feelings of suddenly being pushed through and onto the other side of a membrane or feelings of shooting through space at high speeds.
2. "The Waiting Room"
Almost immediately after a person has inhaled enough DMT to have "broken through", they often find themselves spending a brief amount of time in what is sometimes described as a psychedelic "waiting room" or "loading screen." The appearance of this space can assume a seemingly infinite variety of forms but generally appears in the shape of an enveloping tunnel comprised of rapidly shifting, interlocking geometry. This lasts approximately 10 – 20 seconds and feels qualitatively different from other stages of the experience.
3. "The Other Side"
Once the waiting period is over, the user will feel that they have "broken through" onto the other side. It is here where users experience intense level 7 geometry and level 3 - 4 internal hallucinations. It is worth noting that although experiences vary between individuals, DMT trips often follow common archetypes, scenarios, content, and plots. These scenarios generally consist of visiting what appears to be an alternate reality that is often described to contain autonomous entities, settings, sceneries, and landscapes as well as themes of a cosmic, transcendental, or transpersonal nature.
4. "Drifting Down"
The final stage is experienced as the sensation of being pulled further and further away from the scenario until it is no longer visible and one finds themselves back in reality. This is typically accompanied by level 3 - 4 geometry as well as a sense of general exhilaration and awe. The moderate to mild geometry stays for a further 10 – 15 minutes before disappearing completely, sometimes leaving a noticeable "body high" that lingers for up to an hour.
Anecdotal reports which describe the effects of this compound within our experience index include:
- Experience: 100ug ALD-52 - Nice weekend trip
- Experience:2.5g Mushrooms + 500mg DMT
- Experience:25mg DMT - Your wall can't save you
- Experience:300mg DXM + 25mg DMT + Cannabis - A crazy night
- Experience:30mg (smoked) DMT - The Monolith
- Experience:337mg DMT fumarate - A Day With DMT
- Experience:340 mg DXM + 30 mg DMT + Cannabis - Amazing Synergy
- Experience:40mg (smoked) - The planet became a watermelon
- Experience:40mg DMT - Second breakthrough
- Experience:40mg smoked - Ego death and unity with a friend
- Experience:50mg - Demon faces and déjà vu
- Experience:50mg - Truth
- Experience:75mg DMT - Experiencing Death
- Experience:80mg - progressing deeper into states of unity and interconnectedness
- Experience:An Excessive Amount - N,N DMT / Marijuana - Stuck Inside an Egg
- Experience:DMT (unknown dose, smoked) - It felt like I was on rails the whole time
- Experience:DMT (unknown, smoked/vaporized) - She Struggles then Finds Beauty and the Nature of DMT Itself
- Experience:DMT (unknown, smoked/vaporized) - Unexpected Correspondences
- Experience:DMT (~50mg) + Cannabis - Geometric Angels
- Experience:DMT: 1,1mg 1/5 changa x3 – The continuation
- Experience:DMT: 200mg 1/5 changa - Bad yet glorious trip
Additional experience reports can be found here:
Natural plant sources
Mimosa hostilis root bark
Mimosa hostilis (also known as Mimosa tenuiflora, Jurema and Tepezcohuite) is a perennial tree or shrub native to the northeastern region of Brazil and is found as far north as southern Mexico. Around 1% of the dried weight is DMT. It is legal to purchase online in many parts of the world and a commonly used source for performing DMT extractions or brewing into ayahuasca.
Acacia confusa root bark
Acacia confusa (also known as Acacia Petit Feuille, Small Philippine Acacia, Formosa Acacia (Taiwan Acacia) and Formosan Koa) is a perennial tree native to South-East Asia. It is legal to purchase online and easily accessible in many parts of the world. The plant matter itself contains the following chemicals:
- N-Methyltryptamine: 1.43% (not psychoactive without MAOI)
- DMT: 1.15%
Preparation methods for this substance found within our tutorial index include:
- DMT extraction using sodium hydroxide and naphtha
- Acid-base DMT extraction, based on Marsofold's tek
- D-Limonene and vinegar DMT extraction
- Norman Tek
- DMT ingestion methods
Dr. Rick Strassman has hypothesized that the pineal gland is responsible for the production and release of DMT which he believes possibly could be excreted in large quantities at the moments of birth and death. However, this view was contested by David E. Nichols in 2018, who argued that the pineal gland secretes insufficient amounts of DMT to produce psychoactive effects.
In 2019, a study by Jimo Borjigin demonstrated in rat brains that brain neurons with the two enzymes required to make DMT were not just in the pineal gland but also in the neocortex and hippocampus.
Toxicity and harm potential
DMT is considered to be non-addictive, is not associated with any form of neurotoxicity, and has an extremely low toxicity relative to dose. As with other psychedelic substances, there are relatively few physical side effects associated with acute DMT exposure. Various studies have shown that in reasonable doses in a careful context, it has little to no negative cognitive, psychiatric or physical consequences.
However, as with psychedelics generally, DMT is thought to be able to act as a potential trigger for those with underlying psychiatric conditions. Those with a personal or family history of mental illness are advised not to use this substance unless under medical supervision.
Despite the lack of physical risks, it is highly advised to approach this substance with extreme caution and harm reduction practices.
The median lethal dose (LD50) of DMT in humans has never been reached in any setting, nor is this expected to change due to its pharmacological properties.
Dependence and abuse potential
Like other serotonergic psychedelics, DMT is considered to be non-addictive with a low abuse potential. There are no literature reports of successful attempts to train animals to self-administer DMT — an animal model predictive of abuse liability — indicating that it does not have the necessary pharmacology to either initiate or maintain dependence. Likewise, there is virtually no withdrawal syndrome when chronic use of DMT is stopped.
Notably, tolerance to the effects of DMT does not appear to occur. The reason for this is unknown. Likewise, DMT does not produce cross-tolerance with other psychedelics, meaning that after the consumption of DMT psychedelics will not have a reduced effect.
Although many psychoactive substances are reasonably safe to use on their own, they can quickly become dangerous or even life-threatening when combined with other substances. The list below includes some known dangerous combinations (although it cannot be guaranteed to include all of them). Independent research (e.g. Google, DuckDuckGo) should always be conducted to ensure that a combination of two or more substances is safe to consume. Some interactions listed have been sourced from TripSit.
- Lithium - Lithium is commonly prescribed in the treatment of bipolar disorder. There is a large body of anecdotal evidence that suggests taking it with psychedelics significantly increases the risk of psychosis and seizures. As a result, this combination is strictly discouraged.
- Cannabis - Cannabis has an unexpectedly strong and unpredictable synergy with the effects of psychedelics. Caution is advised with this combination as it can significantly increase the risk of adverse psychological reactions like anxiety, paranoia, panic attacks, and psychosis. Users are advised to start off with only a fraction of their normal cannabis dose and take long breaks between hits to avoid over intake.
- Stimulants (Amphetamine, cocaine, methylphenidate, ...) - Stimulants affect many parts of the brain and alter dopaminergic function. Combined with psychedelics, stimulation can turn into severe anxiety, panic, thought loops, and paranoia. This interaction may result in an elevated risk of mania and psychosis.
- Tramadol - Tramadol lowers the seizure threshold and psychedelics may act as triggers for seizures in susceptible individuals.
Internationally, DMT is classified as a Schedule I controlled substance under the United Nations 1971 Convention on Psychotropic Substances, meaning that international trade in DMT is supposed to be closely monitored and its use is supposed to be restricted to scientific research and medical use. Natural materials containing DMT, including ayahuasca, are not regulated under the 1971 Psychotropic Convention.
- Australia: DMT is controlled under Schedule 9 of the Poisions Standard.
- Austria: DMT is illegal to possess, produce and sell under the SMG (Suchtmittelgesetz Österreich).
- Brazil: DMT is illegal to possess, produce and sell under Portaria SVS/MS nº 344. Rules are relaxed regarding religious use.
- Canada: DMT is a Schedule III controlled substance.
- Denmark: DMT is a Category B controlled substance.
- Estonia: DMT is a Schedule I controlled substance.
- France: DMT is classified as a narcotic.
- Germany: DMT is controlled under Anlage I BtMG (Narcotics Act, Schedule I) as of January 24, 1974. It is illegal to manufacture, possess, import, export, buy, sell, procure or dispense it without a license.
- Italy: DMT is a Schedule I controlled substance.
- Hungary: DMT is illegal to possess, produce and sell.
- Ireland: DMT is controlled under the Misuse of Drugs Acts, 1977.
- Latvia: DMT is a Schedule I controlled substance.
- The Netherlands: DMT is classified as a Lijst 1 (List I) controlled substance under the Opiumwet (Opium Law).
- New Zealand: DMT is classified in New Zealand as a Class A controlled substance under the Misuse of Drugs Act 1975.
- Norway: DMT is a Schedule I controlled substance.
- Russia: DMT is a список I (List I) contolled substance. It is illegal to possess, produce and sell.
- Serbia: DMT is a List 4 controlled substance.
- Sweden: DMT is controlled under Förteckning I (Schedule 1).
- United Kingdom: DMT is a Class A controlled substance.
- United States: DMT is a Schedule I controlled substance. Rules are relaxed regarding religious use, however. In the US, dried root bark of Mimosa hostilis had been considered a "grey area" item for a long time. However, recent efforts by the DEA appear to be focusing on eliminating internet sales of the bark, citing 21 USC § 841, which states that "(IV) any compound, mixture, or preparation which contains any quantity of any of the substances referred to in subclauses (I) through (III)" is also considered an illegal substance. Many USA based vendors have since been stocking Acacia confusa bark as a result due to its very similar alkaloid content.
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