Although Kratom is not a new drug exploding onto the scene, it is a drug that has become more abused in recent years. Kratom is derived from the leaves of a tropical evergreen tree, Mitragyna Speciosa, in Southeast Asia which have opioid properties and some stimulant-like effects. The herbal substance has been used medicinally in the southeast countries in Asia since before the 19th Century. In the United States during the last decade, Kratom has been used to help reduce opioid withdrawals and even worse, abused for the psychoactive ingredients used to get high.
What you need to know about Kratom
In case you were wondering, Kratom is not regulated through the FDA (Food and Drug Administration) who has been forthright in stating that there is no proof that Kratom is safe or effective in treating any condition. According to the FDA, Kratom is not approved for interstate commerce and has been on an import alert starting in February of 2019. The DEA (Drug Enforcement Agency) lists Kratom as a “drug of concern” even though it has not been regulated or considered a safe controlled substance in the United States. In fact, there has been no action to put Kratom as a scheduled drug although it has been contemplated to label it as Schedule I Drug.
Other insights into Kratom
With the onset of 10-15 minutes that can last anywhere from two to five hours, the recreational use of Kratom to get high has increased. The same effects that are caused by stimulants are experienced in lower doses of Kratom while increased doses mimic opioids including the side effects such as constipation, high blood pressure, and excessive perspiration. Kratom can also lead to overdose especially when other fatal drugs are combined with it. People who are addicted to opiates may attempt to substitute Kratom for heroin or OxyContin because Kratom is not yet detectable on many standard drug tests. Underage kids may also use Kratom to get high instead of getting drunk because the age limit to buy the drug is 18 and over and can be easily bought online or at a local head shop.
As more Kratom overdoses come to light and the frequent abuse of Kratom has become known, there is more information being analyzed about this enigmatic drug. If you or someone you know is abusing Kratom, you should get the help needed immediately because any prolonged abuse can cause addiction or worse, overdose. No one, including you, should be a statistic when you can be part of the solution in recovery.
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