Also Known As
Deemsters, Dimitiri, The Spirit Molecule, Elf Spice, Businessman’s Trip
Despite being one of the most simply structured psychedelic compounds, DMT’s profound ability to create potent, yet short-lived, hallucinatory and visionary states makes it an appealing substance to many psychonauts.
DMT has been found 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 and amphibians. 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 concretely determined.
There are proponents of the theory that DMT is released in mass amounts from the pineal gland upon death and is how we are greeted by the afterlife. This same mechanism may also be responsible for lucid dreaming and out of body experiences. Regardless, DMT has been vastly popularized through traditional plant medicines concoctions like Ayahuasca or Bufo which is a 5-MeO-DMT compound that is secreted by the Sonoran Desert Toad.
How It Works
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.
How It Feels
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.
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.
At higher breakthrough doses, physical feelings of being launched across vast distances at incredibly high speeds are commonly reported.
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 has a faster onset than any of the drugs on this list — it can kick in seconds after use, and its acute effects last only about a half-hour. It brings users to a place of introspection and, as one frequent microdoser put it, “cuts out anything that isn’t serving me in the present moment, so I can just enjoy being.”
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.
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.
How To Microdose DMT
DMT has a low threshold at just 2mg and may be hard for most individuals to effectively microdose. A typical dose would generally be considered somewhere in the 20-40mg range. As opposed to other microdoses, the effects of DMT, as discussed, wear off within 15 or 20 minutes and do not cause lingering cognitive effects.
Depending on your supplier, you may be able to find a DMT vape pen that can allow for small inhaled doses that would be considered akin to a microdose. But dosing with this method is largely subjective and be quite unreliable.
On the other hand a pure powder form of DMT can be weighed out on a jewelry scale and then vaporized directly in a glass pipe (yes, a crack pipe).
Another option may also come in the form of changa, a smokkeable blend of sacred vines and plants that contain DMT and MAOi’s. Again the effects may be unpredictable for the end user, but they wear off quickly enough.
The Latest Science
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.