Kratom Addiction: Symptoms, Signs and Side Effects
Symptoms of Kratom Abuse
Kratom is a substance that the Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) has identified as a concern in the United States. Other public offices and medical and scientific organizations have shared similar concerns about kratom side effects and the potential risks associated with the use of the drug. Despite these dangers, some people continue to use kratom for various reasons. Some people use it to treat chronic pain, to lessen the severity of opioid withdrawal, and to experience a euphoric high that is similar to that of opioids.
Kratom is derived from a plant that’s native to Southeast Asia. The drug is currently legal in the United States at the federal level, although several states have banned it. It’s not legal to use kratom in Thailand, Malaysia, Australia and some countries in the European Union. Despite the push to make kratom illegal, the drug is currently marketed as an herbal supplement or alternative treatment option in the United States. As such, there is no regulation on the product, and there’s no standardization as far as how the drug is sold or what it’s combined with. Sold online, kratom comes in different forms. It can be purchased as a powder, capsule or paste.
Taken at low doses, the symptoms of kratom use and kratom abuse are similar to that of using or abusing a stimulant. Low-dose use of kratom creates increased energy and alertness, as well as sociability. At high doses, the kratom side effects are similar to that of opioids. Kratom side effects when large doses are used include:
- Dulled emotions
The European Monitoring Centre for Drugs and Drug Addiction (EMCDDA) believes that a dose of a few grams of kratom is likely to produce stimulant-like side effects. A dose of anywhere from 10 to 25 mg is likely to cause sedation and relaxation. Smaller doses of kratom lead to effects lasting around an hour. Kratom side effects when the drug is used at higher doses can last up to six hours.