What is Salvia Divinorum?
Description of Salvia Divinorum?
Salvia divinorum, the scientific name for the drug Salvia, is a psychedelic plant: traditionally grown in northeastern Oaxaca, Mexico in the region of Sierra Mazateca. For many centuries, the indigenous Mazatecs tribe uses the herb for medicinal and religious purposes. Mexico being one of the few native places where Salvia divinorum grows, many people try to grow it in other areas outside Sierra Mazateca. In the US, Salvia is planted in some mountainous regions with similar climates.
Salvia divinorum is a close relative to many common plants such as: the mint and sage family. Horticulturalists are still unlikely to sell Salvia divinorum in any local nurseries. Even household-cooking Sage, Salvia officinalis, shares the same genus grouping with Salvia divinorum. Salvia divinorum’s psychoactive compound is called Salvinorin A. It produces the psychedelic out-of-body visions that people see and hear when taking Salvia. Salvia and mushrooms the most-potent-natural hallucinogens. Presently in the US, Salvia divinorum and the key compound Salvinorin A are not classified as illegal controlled substances. There are lobbying groups who want to change Salvia’s status. Anti-Drug groups want to make it Schedule I drug. As this type of controlled substance, the drug should be highly addictive and frequently abused with no medicinal use at all. Researchers are still exploring the herb’s healing effects. Presently, Salvia and Salvinorin A are only illegal in Australia.
What is the Scientific Name of Salvia Divinorum?
- Salvia Divinorum Epl.
What is the Chemical Formula of Salvia Divinorum?C23H28O8 (Molecular Formula)
What is the Origin of Salvia Divinorum?
Jean B. Johnson, a young linguist from UC Berkeley, went to Oaxaca, Mexico for research. Later in the late 1930s, he would be the first person to write about Salvia DIvinorum. In a Mazatec ceremony, shamans made tea from the dried "hierba Maria" leaves. This tonic prompted introspective visions in its patients. In the 1950s, Roberto G. Weitlaner, an Austrian researcher and engineer, observed the therapeutic effects of "yerba de Maria." Research-Botanists Gordon Wasson and Albert Hofmann acquired the first dried and fresh samples of Salvia divinorum from the Mazatec people. Their 1962 publication described the healing herb as "a less potent alternative" to psychedelic healing mushrooms.
In the early 2000s, neuroscientists discovered that Salvia divinorum affected the K-opiod receptor (KOR) proteins. These receptors mostly regulate mood, pain perception, and motor control. Salvia divinorum functions as a KOR agonist. Agonists can increase natural neurotransmitter activation in this region and aid in other drug addiction recovery. Psychiatric research still thinks that Salvia’s active ingredient could have psychotherapeutic applications in mental illnesses such as schizophrenia and Alzheimer's.
What is the Legal Status of Salvia Divinorum in the US?
Some states have classified Salvia Divinorum as a Schedule I Drug; however, a federal ruling has not been reached yet.
What are the Common Street Names of Salvia Divinorum?
- Magic Mint
- Purple Sticky
- Hojas de Maria
- Seer’s Sage
- Lady Salvia
- Mystic Mint
- Ska Maria Pastora
- Sage of the Seers
- Yerba Maria
- Maria Pastora
- Shepherdess’s Herb
- Diviner's Sage
How is Salvia Divinorum Used?
With sufficient amounts of Salvinorin A, psychoactive effects will occur. Salvinorin A is Salvia’s key hallucinogenic chemical compound. There are a few popular ways to use Salvia. Each method has varying effects: some ways are more intense, while other preparations yield more manageable highs.
Dried Salvia leaves are often smoked using a bong or pipe. Some users choose to roll it into a joint. The hallucinogenic effects usually last up to one or two hours. Chewing fresh leaves and then swallowing them is another way to trigger psychedelic responses.
When fresh leaves are mashed up and compressed into a nugget, the Salvia leaves do release some Salvinorin-A chemicals and diffuse through the person’s saliva and mucus membrane. This method yields more benign hallucinations, peaking around 10-20 minutes. The longer the Salvia user chews the leaves, the more robust the psychedelic experience becomes.
Salvinorin-A essence is also extracted with alcohol and dried leaves. Heating Salvia essence will create vapors producing a psychedelic high. Other people spray it on cigarettes. When fresh Salvia leaves are pulverized, users dilute Salvinorin-A juice with water and drank as an herbal remedy. The active ingredient is not very water soluble, most of the chemical is absorb in the mouth before passing through the stomach. This preparation may have moderate effects compared to smoking dried leaves.
When vaporizing Salvia Divinorum, the essence is heated and the fumes are inhaled.
How Long Does Salvia Divinorum Stay in Your System?
At least four to eight fresh leaves are needed to achieve any significant psychedelic effects. The hallucinations start creeping in after approximately ten minutes. The mind-altering visions last for forty-five minutes or longer.
For recreational use, some psychedelic-mind-explorers smoke the crushed dried leaves from a pipe or bong. This way provides short but intense hallucination within a few minutes. This type of trip lasts fifteen minutes to a little over one hour. Typically, 0.20–0.80 grams of Salvia are used in a bowl.
Chewing the bitter leaves rolled up into little balls gives a longer-mellower trip. These typical psychedelic explorations produce mild to medium visions. Requiring 10–30 grams of fresh Salvia or 1–6 grams of dried leaves in one session, people sometimes experience bad visions. Alcoholic infusions made from dried Salvia leaves yield similar results. These less-intense visions appear in five to ten minutes and last upwards of two hours.
What are the Signs and Symptoms of Short-Term Salvia Divinorum Use?
What are the Short-Term Effects of Salvia Divinorum Use on the Body?
- Sensation of Twisting Motions
- Visual Hallucinations
- Awkward Sentence Patterns
- Decreased Heart Rate
- Sensation of Spinning
- Slurred Speech
- Heaviness or Lightness of the Body
- Distorted Perceptions of Reality
- Loss of Physical Coordination
- Auditory Hallucinations
- Impaired Motor Control
- Nightmarish Visions
What are the Short-Term Effects of Salvia Divinorum Use on Behavior?
- Emotional Mood Swings
- Severe Paranoia
- Feeling of Detachment and Anti-Social Behavior (from a person’s surroundings)
- Loss Sense with Reality and Increased Delusions of Grandeur
What are the Signs and Symptoms of Long-Term Salvia Divinorum Addiction?
What are the Long-Term Effects of Salvia Divinorum Use on the Body?
- Physical Dependence on Salvia
- Impaired Cognitive Function
- Impaired Memory
- Decreased Dopamine Levels in the Brain
What are the Long-Term Effects of Salvia Divinorum Use on Behavior?
- Depression and Suicidal Tendencies
- Psychological Dependence on Salvia
- Emotional Instability
How to diagnose if you are Addicted to Salvia Divinorum?
The drug’s effects last for only 15 minutes to one hour. This means that evidence of Salvia use may quickly disappear. To determine whether an adolescent is abusing salvia, look for the following warning signs:
- Hoarse Voice or other Signs of Smoking
- Traces of Dried Leaves in Backpacks, Pockets or other Personal Items
- Unusual smoky odors on clothing or personal belongings
- Poor Physical Coordination or Clumsiness
- Bloodshot eyes
- Unusual Containers or Smoking Paraphernalia
If your teen’s behaviors or attitudes change in the following ways, he or she may have a substance abuse problem. Here are some revealing physical and behavioral signs of salvia abuse:
- Loss of Interest in his Favorite Hobbies
- Isolation from Friends or Family
- Episodes of Aggression
- A sudden neglect of Personal Grooming
- Abnormal Mood Changes
- Disturbed Sleep Patterns, Insomnia
- Extreme Moodiness or Irritability
What are the Withdrawal Effects of Salvia Divinorum?
- Diarrhea and Indigestion
- Gastrointestinal Symptoms
How is Salvia Divinorum Addiction Treated?
Salvia often cited as being not physically addictive. Studies show that some people exhibit psychological withdrawal when they try quitting Salvia. Similar to LSD, people develop psychological dependency on psychedelic drugs such as mushrooms or salvia. Addiction forms when their drug-driven out-of-body experiences become more exciting than their mundane-daily existence. These psychedelic mind-explorers won’t stop using or experiencing hallucinogenic visions. Their hallucinogenic journeys become a way to escape from bigger personal issues or a way to self-medicate other mental problems.
A large portion of psychedelic substance users have co-occurring disorders. They have additional mental illnesses such as bipolar disorder, attention deficit disorder, depression, childhood traumas, PTSD, etc. These recovering addicts cannot successfully quit drugs unless they tackle their other psychological issues as well. Using proper medical detox procedures, counseling, and psychiatry medication, substance-abuse rehab therapy can help the addict. After entering an appropriate residential treatment program, they get 24/7 help. The initial part is a physical examination and mental-health screening. Afterwards, patients work with the rehab team to come up with a personalized treatment strategy that looks at the person’s issues holistically. The next step comes in the form of substance detoxification. This procedure cleanses all hallucinogenic substances from the body safely. After detox, recovering addicts enter into residential housing and get situated. The whole community works through certain group therapy programs. Other patients may face similar drug addiction challenges. The foundation of any effective rehab program is individual addiction therapy and group or family counseling. Complete rehab programs also include developing a nuanced understanding of the patient’s own addiction, personalized gym training sessions, learning to manage stress without turning to drugs. Recovering patients should visualize a life free from drugs. While returning home, recovering addicts should continue psychotherapy and participate in 12-step meetings in their local community.
What is the Extent of Salvia Divinorum Use?
In 2006, the US conducted a Public Health and Drug Use study. Researchers discovered that Salvia divinorum use was about 0.3 % for people 12 years or older. Overall, about one to two million people have confirmed using Salvia before. The drug is often used by young adults between eighteen and twenty-five. Studies suggest men are more likely to use it than women.
Looking at one 2009 report from a US drug research group, Salvia divinorum use was approximately 5-7% among high school seniors: this number is comparable to ecstasy use at the time. It appears that Salvia use is not so widespread and usually contained to small-group experimentation. It’s not so a cool-social drug used at parties.
Another 2006 research survey commissioned by the Khey group looked at US University students with an average age of nineteen to twenty years old. 6.0% of their total sample size has had a Salvia experience and expressed very little interest in experiencing a Salvia trip ever again. This conclusion suggests that repeated Salvia abuse is very low.