Dimethyltryptamine (DMT): Ingestion methods

Last modified: Sunday, 31. May 2009 - 1:41 pm

DMT is used in both its natural and synthetic forms. Natural DMT can be taken orally as an herbal tea or other beverage. If prepared this way, it is combined with another substance in order to maintain its effect. For example, certain religious groups concoct a beverage from plants that contain DMT and use this drink in sacred rituals. The drink, called ayahuasca, is usually made from two plants: chacruna, which contains DMT; and yag, which contains a substance called harmaline that allows DMT to pass through the stomach. The taste of ayahuasca is reportedly so foul that some people cannot bring themselves to drink it.
DMT usually has no effect when taken orally because it is inactivated in the stomach by an enzyme called monoamine oxydase. Adding harmaline blocks the effects of this enzyme and allows the drug to enter the user’s system. To become active orally, DMT must be combined with monoamine oxydase inhibitors (MAOIs), a highly potent and potentially dangerous medication.
Synthetic DMT is usually smoked, injected, or sniffed. The drug sometimes comes in the form of a crystal ready-made for smoking. Alternatively, some users will soak parsley in a liquid form of the drug and then smoke the dried leaves. When smoked or injected, DMT acts quickly. Its effects begin in five minutes or less, peak in about 20 minutes, and are usually over in an hour. The brevity of the DMT experience has earned it the nickname “businessman’s trip.” When sniffed, the effects of synthetic DMT begin and end even more rapidly. The intoxication begins in about 10 seconds, lasts for two or three minutes, and is over within 10 minutes.

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