Predictors of Salvia divinorum Use Among a National Sample of Entering First-year U.S. College Students

Julie M Croff, William DeJong


Objective: Past epidemiological studies have revealed that 18- to 25-year-olds have the highest rate of Salvia divinorum (salvia) use. This study examines predictors of salvia use among a large national sample of incoming first-year college students attending 144 academic institutions.
Method: Each institution instructed their entering first-year students to complete an online alcohol course. A total of 7,314 randomly selected students completed a version of the course’s baseline survey that included questions about salvia use.
Results: Salvia use in the past two weeks was reported by 3.5%. In a multivariate model, past-two-week salvia use was more common among students who were male, non-White, and had an absent father; this study did not correct for multiple statistical tests, and therefore, these results may be spurious. Salvia use and use of cigarettes and marijuana were strongly related in bivariate analyses. Current drinkers were approximately two times more likely to use salvia in the past two weeks. More than a third of those reporting past-two-week salvia use reported using salvia while under the influence of marijuana in the past month.
Discussion: This study is the first to examine salvia and other substance use over the past two weeks and explores the use of salvia under the influence of marijuana. Students being disciplined for marijuana-related offenses should be questioned about the concomitant use of salvia.


salvia; other drug; college student

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