In recent years, more and more people have been looking for natural ways to get high. Salvia divinorum is a natural herb that belongs to the mint family. It’s original to southern Mexico, South and Central America. People can buy Salvia leaves, seeds, or stems in most tobacco shops or online. But, it’s vital to look at salvia addiction facts and statistics to understand the impact of this somewhat legal drug.
What is Salvia?
Salvia divinorum is a plant medicine that can be vaporized or inhaled to produce hallucinogenic effects. The Mazatec people have been using it for centuries.
Its active ingredient, salvinorin A is used for religious ceremonies and medicinal use. The main ingredient in salvia acts as a potent activator of nerve cell targets called kappa opioid receptors. These are different from the receptors activated by opioid drugs like heroin and morphine.
This potent psychoactive compound triggers visual hallucinations, detachments, and other symptoms. While salvia isn’t addictive like most common drugs are, it can cause dependence. Not to mention adverse effects on someone’s physical and mental health.
5 Salvia Addiction Facts You Should Know
Salvia is a recreational drug used for religious ceremonies and other experiments. Thus, there’s not much we know about its effects. Yet, in recent years, salvia addiction facts prove that more people turn to salvia to find answers to treat ailments and more.
1. Salvia Isn’t a Controlled Substance
Like other hallucinogenic drugs, salvia isn’t controlled. It does not have an approved medical use in the United States, and no federal agency regulates it. But, it is listed as a “drug of concern” by the Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) since people still abuse salvia.
The drug is available online, at herbal supplement stores, and any ayurvedic medicine center. Street names for salvia include Diviner’s Sage, Magic Mint, Sally-D, and Maria Pastora.
2. Long-Term Salvia’s Effects Remain Unknown
Salvia is a hallucinogen, one of the strongest. People experience short-term side effects like chills, nausea, and depersonalization. Yet, there’s little research about the long-term effects of salvia use.
Studies believe long-term use can lead to cognitive impairment. Some people struggle with anxiety or difficulty adjusting to reality after suffering “bad trips.” When people combine salvia with other drugs or alcohol, they increase their risks of complications and overdose.
3. Salvia Is Legal in Some States
This life-threatening substance is legal in so many states. Salvia is legal in states like California and Maine, while the substance is available without restriction in Florida. So far, only Missouri, Oklahoma, and Delaware categorize it as a Schedule I controlled substance. The DEA is considering classifying salvia as a Schedule I drug alongside LSD and heroin.
4. People Can Suffer Salvia Intoxication
When someone experiences severe hallucinations by salvia, they need medical attention immediately. Salvia intoxication can lead to seizures, mental instability, and other complications. When people take salvia alone, they are at higher risk of experiencing a “bad trip,” which can have life-threatening consequences.
5. Most People Try Salvia to Experiment
Most people don’t seek salvia as a recreational drug like they would marijuana. Yet, they experiment because they learn about famous stories of what people see and feel under the influence of salvia. Salvia users are experimental, besides those who use salvia as part of a religious ceremony or hoping to heal from a chronic condition. The good news is that about half of those who try it say they won’t do it again.
Salvia Addiction Statistics
There’s little research about the impact of salvia on our health and system. Yet, salvia addiction statistics prove that we need more restrictions. People say that salvia addiction is rare. But people often use it with other drugs and alcohol to heighten the effects, which places them at risk of overdose.
- According to the National Institute on Drug Abuse, almost 12% of high school seniors used salvia in the past year.
- According to the 2016 National Survey on Drug Use and Health, about 5.3 million Americans aged 12 or older have tried salvia.
- Close to 37 states attempted to regulate the sale and possession of salvia in 2011.
- Depending on the concentration of salvinorin A, the drug’s effects kick in anywhere between 10 seconds to 30 minutes.
- Salvinorin A, the active compound in salvia, has potency like that of LSD.
Today, salvia is still used in religious ceremonies and treats illness by the Mazatec people of Mexico. Salvia abuse is common among teenagers.
Substance abuse among teens is becoming more and more prevalent:
- About two-thirds of high schoolers have tried alcohol
- Almost half have been attempting marijuana
- 2 in every ten reported misusing prescription medications
Salvia Addiction Treatment
Addiction to salvia is rare, but some people fall addicted to its effects or feel they need to use the substance to function. Side effects of salvia addiction are hazardous to those using them, and most of the time, they don’t notice them until it’s too late.
When people experience withdrawal symptoms, they go back to taking it even more to control their symptoms. Speak with an addiction specialist to determine the best way to seek help for synthetic marijuana addiction. At Lighthouse Recovery Institute, our drug addiction recovery programs include:
- Medical Detox: can help patients experiencing withdrawal symptoms go through this process comfortably.
- Intensive Outpatient Programs: a more flexible program that includes at least nine hours of treatment per week.
- Group Therapy: having peers who understand their situation is vital for recovery. We also incorporate 12-step support group meetings to help foster a community network.
- Long-term Recovery Programs: a way to access ongoing support for those in early recovery.
Get Help Today
If you or someone you love is struggling with substance use disorder, seek help immediately. Call 866-308-2090 today and speak with an addiction specialist to learn more about our addiction treatment programs.
We treat each patient in a case-by-case scenario because we know no two addiction stories are alike. Start walking towards your recovery, and we’ll be here supporting you and your family every step of the way. Please don’t wait another day to start addiction treatment–your life depends on it.