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Salvia Divinorum Use Among a College Student Sample

NCJ Number
Journal of Drug Education Volume: 38 Issue: 3 Dated: 2008 Pages: 297-306
David N. Khey; Bryan Lee Miller; O. Hayden Griffen
Date Published
10 pages
This study examined college students’ use of the hallucinogenic plant, Salvia divinorum.
Findings show that 22.6 percent of students surveyed had heard of Salvia divinorum. Of these respondents, the overwhelming majority reported learning about the drug through their friends: 81.9 percent learned about Salvia from their friends, 4.8 percent from a class, 2.7 percent from the Internet, 2.7 percent from a family member, 1.6 percent from the media, and 1.6 percent from a head shop. Findings are contrary to anecdotal evidence suggesting that Salvia divinorum is primarily an Internet phenomenon. The use of Salvia divinorum appears to be concentrated among Whites, males, and students from more affluent families. Only 40 percent of Salvia divinorum users in the sample purchased the substance themselves, suggesting Salvia divinorum use occurs in groups. This study suggests that while Salvia divinorum may pose a threat to youth; a thorough risk assessment based on sound research should be paramount in the process. To date, four States have made preemptive decisions to classify Salvia divinorum as a Schedule I drug before any indication of prevalence of continuance rates by extant research. Data were collected from 190 undergraduates at a large public university in the State of Florida. Table, figures, and references