Table of Contents
- What Kratom is
- How it works
- What people use Kratom for
- Side effects of Kratom dependence
- Is Kratom addictive
- Do we know how long Kratom lasts in your system
- Treatment for Kratom addiction
- Signs of Kratom use
- Getting help for Kratom addiction at Avenues Recovery Maryland
- Bottom Line
Kratom is a kind of drug that people use to control several health problems. However, like many other drugs, they get addicted to it. As a result, this leads to addiction and abuse problems.
There are many things that you need to know about this plant. So, spare a few minutes and read further.
What Kratom is
It is a tree whose leaves help to generate medicines and recreational drugs. However, kratom is banned in several states of the United States, due to safety reasons.
It is important to note that people use this plant for the withdrawal from morphine, heroin, and other opioid drugs. Many people also believe that it can help with depression, cough, anxiety, and many other conditions. Keep in mind that there is no scientific evidence that proves the significance of these uses.
Relying on kratom for any purpose is also unsafe. This is because Kratom uses are associated with severe side effects such as seizures, liver damage, hallucinations, and death. The U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) recommends that people avoid this plant and its products due to its serious side effects.
How it works
According to an FDA study, this plant is an agonist that attaches to mu-opioid receptors in your brain. Note that these are the same receptors that activate when you consume opioids, such as heroin or painkillers. Experts believe that 7-hydroxymitragynine and mitragynine can help reduce pain by binding with these opioid receptors. As a result, your pain decreases significantly.
Because of these properties, Kratom had become popular among people as a substitute to opioid pain medication such as OxyContin (oxycodone and Vicodin (hydrocodone). Generally, professionals use this element to manage severe pain linked with health problems such as fibromyalgia and arthritis.
A 2014 online survey showed that individuals who use kratom leaves in the USA are mostly middle-income and middle-aged people experiencing chronic pain. Almost 8,000 individuals filled in the survey and reported that they were using Kratom to improve their mood or treat pain.
Besides that, a small number of participants responded that they were using it so that they could quit opioid drugs or treat opioid withdrawal.
What people use it for
As we have discussed, there is no sufficient evidence to prove that Kratom can help to improve, treat, or relieve any health condition. However, several research studies are underway to prove that it can help in the following conditions.
- acute pain
- chronic pain
- athletic performance
- high blood pressure
- sexual problems that control pleasure and satisfaction during sexual activity
- withdrawal from morphine, heroin, and other opioid drugs
Side Effects of Kratom Dependence
While individuals who consume these leaves believe in their effectiveness, some studies show that Kratom has several safety problems and side effects, even more than its benefits. In the United States, poison control centers had 1,800 reports that showed the use of Kratom and deaths due to it from 2011 to 2017.
Apart from this, according to the reports, five to seven infants exposed to Kratom go through withdrawal.
The plant has a long list of side effects, including:
- dry mouth
- weight loss
- nausea, chills, and vomiting
- muscle pain
- liver damage
- changes in urine
- muscle pain
It can also impact your nervous system and mind. For instance, it causes:
- delusion and hallucinations
- breathing suppression
You also need to know that it takes around five to ten minutes. Plus, its effects stay for two to five hours. The impact of the Kratom also increases depending on in what quantity you are consuming it. In addition to it, in animals, this plant has more effect than morphine. An infant can also get exposed to it when a mother who is breastfeeding consumes this element.
You also need to know that most of the side effects occur when you consume it for a longer time and in high doses. There is no research that states what quantity of Kratom is toxic for individuals.
Is Kratom Addictive?
FDA has shown their concern over the usage of Kratom, as it affects your opioid receptors, similar to morphine. This property can lead to the risk of abuse, addiction, and dependence. Daily usage of Kratom can also lead to addiction and dependence in some individuals. As a result, some people suffer withdrawal symptoms after they stop using it.
Here are some withdrawal symptoms that you can experience.
- muscle pain
- unsteady movements
- mood swings
Do we know how long Kratom lasts in your system?
Researchers need more evidence to find out the half-life of Kratom. How long Kratom will stay in your body depends on several factors, such as:
- type of kratom
- frequency of use
- body f7at
- metabolic rate
- food and water intake
Treatments for Kratom Addiction?
Depending on your condition, your health provider may choose the following options for the treatment.
Kratom Addiction Detox & Tapering
As you may know, detox is the term used for the process of removing toxins from your body. In different types of addictive and psychoactive substances, such as benzodiazepines, health professionals lower dosages over a period of time to minimize withdrawal cravings and symptoms. This method is known as weaning off the substance or simply tapering. The objective of this treatment is to gradually rebalance brain chemistry over time, rather than shocking your brain by suddenly stopping drug usage.
When a person consumes any drug such as Kratom and suddenly stops consuming it, their brain can suffer from a rebound effect. In this case, your brain tries to balance the sudden changes, leading to g several withdrawal symptoms. It is important to note that tapering your dosage can prevent or lower the side effects of withdrawal. Since the drug will still be present in your mind, it can help your brain chemistry to balance itself naturally.
Kratom Withdrawal Medications
Some health specialists also believe that addicts can manage Kratom dependence with supportive care that revolves around treating some withdrawal symptoms that usually occur during detox. Also, EMCDDA reports show that anxiolytic, anti-inflammatory, and antidepressants medications can play a great role in resolving symptoms of withdrawal when consumed with the combination of dihydrocodeine and lofexidine. A drug, lofexidine, used to lower high blood pressure, can be beneficial for you to control symptoms of withdrawal of opioids.
If you are suffering from other substances abuse, your doctor will alter the medications to avoid unexpected drug interactions and complications. The detox program contains procedures like screening. However, Kratom is not included in conventional toxicology screenings, as it is not a controlled substance. Therefore, it is important for the health provider to know whether you are using Kratom or any other drug or medications so that they can choose to terminate accordingly.
Signs of Kratom Use
If you want to help your friends and family but only have doubt that they are using Kratom, you can check for certain signs and indications. The behavior and body language of individuals consuming Kratom are greatly different from others.
You can look for some common side effects such as:
- social behavior
- changes in appetite
You may also look for extreme changes in their appearance, moods, and behaviors. If they are consuming Kratom in significant amounts, you will also see a difference in their overall health.
Getting Help for Kratom Addiction at Avenues Recovery in Indiana
We all know that living with pain is a difficult task. If you are experiencing pain, you may already know how significantly it can impact your quality of life. This is why, if you are thinking of using Kratom for your pain, it’s better first to contact a health provider and discuss your problem with them. Some health facilities utilize alternative and complementary therapies with the combination of traditional medical approaches for pain management and treatment. For instance, mindfulness and some other type of body practices help some patients to control pain and other problems.
If people who are already using Kratom as a pain reliever and observe that they are getting addicted to it, they need to get help as soon as possible. On the other hand, if you want your family or friends to quit their addiction, you need to take them to any trusted healthcare professionals who can convince them to get treatment. At Avenues Recovery in Fort Wayne, Indiana, our medical and clinical team work together to create a treatment plan that treats someone suffering from kratom addiction and addresses his or her specific struggle. Our facility is beautiful, our people are warm and welcoming, and our community is growing.
Kratom is a plant that may deliver benefits to you. But, due to little research, it’s better to avoid using it for any health condition. Plus, there are no particular dosages that prove to work on your conditions. This is why, if you ever think to use this element, visit a health facility for more guidance.