Salvia, a Hallucinogenic Recreational Psychoactive Drug
For those of you that haven't heard of Salvia yet, this is an extremely powerful hallucinogenic plant called Salvia Divinorum. Salvia is a continuous growing (perennial) herb that's related to the 'mint' family that grows in specific areas of the Sierra Mazateca region of Oaxaca, Mexico.
The main toxic ingredient in Salvia is salvinorin A and it's extremely potent. Studies show that salvinorin A is responsible for the hallucinogen effects the user receives when abusing Salvia.
Anthropologist in the 1930s discovered salvia divinorum while they were looking for cures in Mexico; they were looking for medicinal and magical cures. Salvia divinorum has been used in rituals by the Mazatec Indians for healing purposes.
Salvia has not been classified as a controlled substance but there have been several States and Countries that have passed legislation to regulate the use of this hallucinogenic drug. Right now the DEA has listed Salvia as a drug of concern and may consider classifying Salvia as a Schedule I controlled drug which is what LSD and Marijuana are. Those that abuse Salvia purchase this psychoactive drug through the internet and at head shops. Some users of Salvia refer to it as 'the new weed' or the 'new marijuana' and brag about their Salvia use.
When Salvia is abused in the United States it is usually chewed or smoked. When an individual chews fresh leaves of the Salvia the juicy material is absorbed through the membranes in your mouth and by swallowing some of the juice. The hallucinogenic effects start to appear within 5 or 10 minutes. Some people smoke the dried leaves in water pipes or as joints and sometimes vaporized and inhaled. Smoking Salvia divinorum is the most common way of abusing this herb and it only takes about 30 seconds for the effects to start taking place.
Salvia divinorum Abuse Effects
Salvia alters the brain and the user experiences distorted visions, hallucinations, reality is not only distorted and disconnected but it's also very intense. Out of body experiences and hearing colors and seeing sounds are part of the distorted reality an abuser of Salvia experiences. Most Salvia abusers have said that the hallucinations and distorted experiences are short lived though. This is probably why the user repeats the abuse.
Abusing substances like Salvia divinorum and other psychoactive drugs is not only dangerous to the user but others as well. Many times when abusing substances, alcohol or other drugs the user also gets behind the wheel and drives. The effects of these dangerous substances can be deadly not only to the user when operating a motor vehicle but to innocent people on the roads and highways as well. Combining Salvia with alcohol or other drugs is like playing Russian roulette with the user's life as well as everyone else's.
This video shows individuals tripping on Salvia and explains the dangers of this hallucinogenic drug. Listen to a mother as she talks about how she believes Salvia drove her son to commit suicide.
One thing is for sure; abusing any type of drug or substance in time is dangerous to the user and many times can be deadly to others. Driving while under the influence of any substance is dangerous to everyone involved. When an individual is 'high' on drugs or hallucinating while under the influence of Salvia or any other hallucinogen, psychotic episodes can cause a person to do things that they wouldn't normally do. Hearing voices and having out of body experiences can cause danger to the drug user and possibly other innocent people.