What Is Salvia

Know the facts and connect with support to help you address known or suspected substance use with your child.

Salvia (aka salvia divinorum) is a psychoactive mint, used in traditional spiritual practices by the Mazatec people of Mexico. It is legal in both Mexico and the United States. However, some states have banned the leafy green, making its possession — like that of heroin or cocaine — a felony.

Also known as magic mint and diviner’s sage, among other slang terms, salvia looks like green plant leaves or a liquid extract. It can be chewed, smoked, or vaporized, depending on the form it is in. Salvinorin-A, the active property of salvia divinorum, is considered to be the most potent, selective and naturally occurring hallucinogen when smoked — rivaling the potency of the synthetic hallucinogens like LSD.[1]

Understand the risks

This drug is a psychoactive hallucinogen that can cause dramatic and sometimes frightening mind-states. Physical effects include dizziness, slurred speech, and loss of coordination. Harm from Salvia divinorum most likely occurs from inadequate preparation or from using the drug in a setting in which it is dangerous to be intoxicated from any drug at all (i.e. driving).[2]

Identify & address use

Signs of use include dizziness, slurred speech, loss of coordination and short but intense hallucinations. If you’re concerned your child may be using salvia or other substances, the following can help you address the behavior more effectively.