Salvia, like many other hallucinogenic drugs, has been used throughout history as a healing drug. The Mazatec tribe, indigenous to southern Mexico, originally used the plant as a part of a healing ritual. Since then, however, people have begun to use the plant recreationally.
So what do you need to know about salvia? Is salvia addictive? How many people have used the plant? Is it legal to take or have salvia? Here’s what you need to know about salvia and salvia use.
What Does Salvia Feel Like?
It’s estimated that 1.8 million people have taken salvia at some point in their lives. The plant is part of the mint family, and it’s either chewed or dried and smoked to get the desired effect.
What does salvia feel like? The feeling you’ll get when using salvia can best be described as a disconnect. People who’ve used the drug tell us that they didn’t know where they were, and some didn’t know who they were. They hadn’t remembered that they’d taken a drug.
Many people experienced hallucinations ranging from a distortion of reality to actual visions. But the strangest side effects of salvia are the hallucinations in the other senses. Users described the feeling as “bugs on your skin.”
And salvia has a unique effect. Stimulation of one sense can cause a hallucination in another. In other words, an auditory stimulation may cause a visual hallucination.
Salvia Side Effects
The most frequently cited salvia side effects are the hallucinations. But there are other effects, as well. First, you’ll likely become very nauseous. Your speech will be slurred, or even unintelligible. Your heart rate will drop dramatically, and you’ll begin to sweat profusely. Most likely, you’ll probably lose control of your motor skills.
There are very few people who describe a salvia trip as pleasant. In fact, most say that smoking salvia was the scariest thing they’ve done in their lives. Unlike other drugs like cocaine or meth, there are very few pleasurable salvia side effects, and some have said smoking salvia felt like “a journey to hell.”
Is Salvia Addictive?
There haven’t been too many studies done on the addictive properties of salvia. But users of the drug have had a few words about the topic. Most say that the trip you experience when you take salvia is so bad, you’re not ever likely to want to do it again. So, while the drug is possibly addictive, it’s not guaranteed that a salvia user will ever take the drug twice.
How Long Does Salvia Last?
Salvia trips are quick to come on and just as quick to leave. You’ll first notice the effects of salvia around 15 minutes after you chew or smoke the plant. Full effects are felt about 30 minutes into your trip.
The effects of salvia only last between 15 minutes and two hours for most people. In rare cases, the salvia high may last up to two hours. That, though, depends on factors like metabolism, body weight and the amount of the drug ingested.
Is Salvia Legal in the US?
Back in 2002, a United States Representative from California, Joe Baca, proposed a bill which would make salvia a controlled substance. That bill failed, and there are now varying laws between the states.
For example, in North Carolina it’s illegal to possess or use salvia. However, if you’re a student of agriculture, you may be exempt. In the state of New York, salvia is legal. There are no laws restricting the possession or the use of salvia.
Is Salvia Legal in the UK?
In the United Kingdom, it’s legal to possess and to cultivate salvia. However, it’s illegal to distribute the plant for the purpose of human consumption. It’s also illegal to import the plant for human consumption.
Why is Salvia Illegal?
Salvia is often used as a decorative plant. It boasts pretty, colorful flowers and is frequently used in gardening and landscaping. So why is salvia illegal?
Again, there are places where it’s legal to use and possess salvia. Many states and countries have introduced legislation which might ban the use and possession of the drug. But, in most cases, use of the plant is only a misdemeanor. In many states, using salvia will result in a fine as low as $25.
Salvia is legal in some places but it’s a very powerful hallucinogenic. The effects of the drug haven’t been studied fully, and it’s unclear what the long-term impact of the plant on health might be.
Salvia vs LSD
Which is more powerful, salvia or LSD? Well, salvia is said to be the most powerful hallucinogenic known. Both LSD and salvia are hallucinogens, but salvia is thought to give a more intense high.
Under the influence of both drugs, you’ll see and hear things that aren’t there, and you’ll experience a “trip.” But there’s one big difference between salvia and LSD: perception.
Most users of LSD know, even while they’re high, that they’re high. They know that their hallucinations aren’t real and are just an effect of the drug.
Salvia users say that line is hard to see. They’ve already forgotten they’re under the influence, in most cases. People who use salvia say that the high is just an alternate reality. That they think the visions and other hallucinations are really happening.
Salvia vs Marijuana
Somehow, salvia has come to be classified by users as a part of the marijuana family. In reality, that’s not true. The salvia plant is closely related to mint and to sage. And while both plants are smoked, there’s very little similarity between salvia and marijuana.
Marijuana users will tell you that the high is relaxing. Marijuana is a calming drug, for the most part, although there may be some feelings of paranoia associated with smoking weed.
Salvia, conversely, is not calming at all. Salvia users say they felt excessively paranoid but couldn’t understand why. They saw “visions” of danger – one man visualized that each of his friends were opposing army members on a battlefield. And while the salvia high only lasts a few minutes, those few minutes can be extremely dangerous.
It’s natural to be curious and ask questions about salvia. And we in no way condone salvia use, but we would like to share this final thought with you. Many salvia users have enlisted the help of friends. While they’re experiencing the terrifying high of a salvia trip, their friends are present to ensure they do no harm to themselves or anyone else.