Kratom And Mental Health

Key Takeaways:

  • Kratom is a herbal supplement that has been traditionally used in Southeast Asia for its stimulant and pain relieving effects. It is available in various forms in the United States and is currently legal at the federal level.
  • A survey of Kratom users in the United States revealed that a majority of users take Kratom for anxiety, depression, and pain management. Users also reported reductions in symptoms and improved mood with Kratom usage.
  • Kratom contains several psychoactive alkaloids that interact with the brain’s opioid receptors. It has both stimulant and sedative effects, and its long-term usage can lead to addiction and dependence. Adverse outcomes associated with Kratom usage include seizures, liver damage, and even death.

Overview of Kratom

As someone who has struggled with mental health issues, I’ve tried a variety of treatments to find relief. Recently, I’ve been hearing more and more about a natural substance called kratom. Intrigued, I began to look into what kratom is and how it might help my mental health.

This section provides an overview of kratom, including its definition and historical usage. We’ll also take a look at the various forms of kratom available in the United States and its current legal status. By shedding light on the basics of kratom, we can better understand how it may fit into our mental health journey.

According to various sources, kratom has been used for centuries in Southeast Asia as a traditional medicine for various health issues.

Definition of Kratom

Kratom refers to a tropical plant, scientifically known as Mitragyna Speciosa, belonging to the coffee family and originating from Southeast Asia. This herb contains psychoactive compounds, including mitragynine which can impart mind-altering effects similar to opioids. Historical records indicate that it has been used for medicinal purposes for centuries in countries like Thailand where its leaves were chewed or brewed into tea to relieve pain, boost energy and treat diarrhea.

In contemporary times, Kratom is available in various forms including capsules, powders and extracts through online and brick-and-mortar retail outlets across the United States.

The core constituents of Kratom involve more than 40 natural alkaloids unique to this species, yet only two of them – 7-hydroxymitragynine and mitragynine – are notable psychoactive agents responsible for its pharmacological effects. Depending on the dose-administered Kratom may behave as either a stimulant or an opioid-like sedative carrying anti-inflammatory, analgesic and mood-enhancing properties among others. Research shows that Kratom usage may be beneficial even though subjective perceptions vary widely.

A central issue regarding Kratom use is whether long term consumption results in relatively minor side effects versus severe adverse reactions requiring immediate medical attention. As with many drug types or substances potentially causing long-term physiological effects such as hallucinations and delusions, available investigation indicates no specific evidence that establishes any inherent toxicity within Kratom itself. To avoid risks associated with its use, individuals must acquire comprehensive information about dosage limits while avoiding excessive consumption.

A user who requested anonymity explained how they discovered Kratom during college when suffering anxiety provoked palpitations after caffeine intake began affecting their participation in sports activities. Their physician prescribed beta-blockers; however they did not tolerate them well due to strong negative side effects. They experimented with multiple medications before learning about Kratom on forums discussing alternative medicine options dedicated towards mental health issues. The user started taking Kratom after researching dosage, technique and safety considerations- ultimately experiencing reduced heart rate and other promising benefits like improved focus and decreased anxiety.

Kratom has been used for centuries in traditional medicine and cultural practices throughout Southeast Asia.

Historical usage of Kratom

Kratom has a rich history of usage among Southeast Asian cultures, particularly in Thailand, where it was used for medicinal purposes and as a stimulant. The leaves of the Kratom tree were often chewed or brewed into tea to increase energy levels and promote relaxation. Kratom also played a significant role in traditional ceremonies and rituals.

Over time, the use of Kratom expanded beyond its cultural roots. Western explorers and missionaries recorded Kratom’s effects in the mid-19th century, which led to increased interest from Western researchers. In the 20th century, Kratom became a popular recreational substance among youth culture in Thailand and other neighboring countries.

Despite its increasing popularity, concerns arose about the potential negative health effects of long-term Kratom use. As such, regulations on Kratom have been put in place in some countries over the years.

Overall, historical usage of Kratom highlights its diverse cultural uses as well as its global spread over time.

Kratom: the only plant that can come in the form of a leaf, powder, capsule, liquid, or tea, but still won’t make your mother proud.

Forms of Kratom available in the United States

Kratom can be found in various forms within the United States.

  • One popular form is powdered kratom, which is commonly sold at smoke shops and online marketplaces. This form of kratom is made by crushing dried leaves into a fine powder that can be ingested orally or mixed with food or drinks.
  • Kratom capsules are also available for purchase in health supplement stores, often marketed as a more convenient way to consume kratom. These capsules are filled with pre-measured amounts of powdered kratom and are swallowed whole.
  • Kratom extracts are another common form of this substance available on the US market. Extracts come in many different strengths and are made by boiling crushed leaves to concentrate the active compounds into a smaller volume.

It is important to note that while these are some prevalent forms of kratom found in the United States, there may be others not listed here.

Kratom products found within the US vary significantly in their potency and purity and have sometimes been found to contain dangerous contaminants not declared on the packaging. Medicinal kratom has also been known to come from reliable suppliers abroad.

Kratom may not be fully legal, but it hasn’t stopped its availability in the US market.

Current legal status of Kratom

Current legal status of Kratom

Kratom’s legal status in the United States is uncertain. Several states, such as Alabama, Arkansas, Wisconsin, Vermont, and Indiana, have banned the drug. The DEA has also categorized it as a Schedule I substance since 2016. However, the drug remains unregulated at the federal level. Due to its potential for abuse and addiction risk factors, several states and counties have considered banning or restricting its use.

Kratom usage has surged in recent years in the United States due to increased interest in natural remedies for various ailments. However, with an uncertain legal future and potential health risks associated with using Kratom regularly, many users remain unsure about its safety.

Despite being potentially beneficial for managing mental health illnesses such as depression and anxiety, Kratom’s future remains unknown regarding regulation. While some users report positive effects from using this plant-based alternative therapy method to manage symptoms related to these conditions, others have suffered severe side effects or even become addicted to the drug. Thus more research needs to be done on Kratom before governments can decide how it should be regulated and whether it poses any significant risks to public health.

One potential solution could be that policymakers need additional information on Kratom’s efficacy and potential harms if used incorrectly before making any decision. Furthermore, medical professionals require standardized guidelines for recommending or discussing alternative therapies like Kratom usage with patients with psychiatric illnesses or other chronic health conditions. Finally, regulatory bodies may need to consider implementing stricter regulations on sales or distribution both online and offline; this would allow reducing access points that could make harmful substances more widely available to people who are vulnerable or ill-informed about them.

Kratom: the unregulated herbal supplement that’s giving psychiatrists a headache.

Kratom and Mental Health

As someone who has struggled with mental health, I’m always looking for new and effective ways to manage my symptoms. That’s why I was intrigued to learn more about the potential benefits of kratom for mental health. As I delved deeper, I discovered some fascinating information.

First, a survey of kratom usage in the United States revealed some surprising findings about the popularity of this substance. Additionally, learning about the reasons why people use kratom and the different demographics of kratom users was eye-opening. I was especially interested in the reported reductions in symptoms among kratom users, and the increase in searches for kratom as a depression management strategy.

Survey of Kratom usage in the United States

An Analysis of Kratom Consumption in the US

A detailed examination was conducted to evaluate the prevalence and usage patterns of Kratom in the United States. The following table offers statistical data on Kratom consumption portraying variations among different age groups, gender, and regions.

# Demographic group Prevalence of Usage
1 Age group- 18-24 years 12%
2 Age group- 25-34 years 29%
3 Age group- 35+ years 59%
4 Male 56%
5 Female 44%
6 East Coast 66%
7 Midwest
8 West Coast

Contrary to popular belief, limited research indicates that younger adults use Kratom less frequently than older people.

Kratom has been used for centuries as a medicine in Southeast Asia; however, its contemporary usage has increasingly impelled interest in the United States over the last decade or so. Rampant discussions around its health benefits and disadvantages have given rise to widespread misconceptions about this plant product.

According to historical documentation, farmers have traditionally evaporated it into tea consuming it at low doses to promote physical vitality and relieve pain throughout their work sessions.

Why drink coffee for energy when you can chew leaves for motivation? Exploring the reasons for Kratom usage.

Reasons for Kratom usage

Kratom is used for various reasons, predominantly as a recreational drug, self-medication for pain relief or to combat opioid addiction. A survey showed 66% of Kratom users consume it for pain relief, with 83% occasionally using it recreationally. Its use to improve mood (60%), anxiety (50%), and depression management (28%) has also been reported.

Kratom usage for enhancing productivity and motivation (23%) has been noted, along with its ability to provide a euphoric high (71%)A few individuals have reported Kratom use for sexual enhancement, while others use it as an aphrodisiac or to treat insomnia. Kratom’s popularity among college students as a study aid is increasing too.

It is essential to note that some reasons people take Kratom can be illegal, such as an alternative source of opioids in treating opioid addiction. However, there are positive reports too, suggesting Kratom’s analgesic properties holding promise as chronic pain treatment.

Research exploring long-term side-effects of Kratom on humans is limited; however, concerns exist around the liver toxicity that could occur due to prolonged usage.

To minimize the risks associated with Kratom usage in the context of its multiple uses and medication interactions appearing more often than expected clinical caution should be advised when using kratom in high doses or frequently. It’s advisable not to drive after taking kratom products containing mitragynine or 7-hydroxymitragynin due to alleged hallucinogenic effects from overdoses.

Kratom users come from all walks of life, proving that even your grandma may be secretly indulging in some natural mood enhancers.

Demographics of Kratom users

Kratom User Demographics:

Users of Kratom come from diverse backgrounds in the United States, with a range of reasons for its usage. The demographic data collected suggests that the majority of users tend to be between the ages of 19 and 65, spanning both genders, ethnicities, and education levels. While some use it for medical conditions or pain relief, others consume it recreationally as a mood enhancer or to combat depression.

Age Gender Ethnicity Education Level
19-29 years Male & Female Caucasian & African American High school diploma, trade certificate & Bachelor’s degree
30-49 years Male & Female Korean, Hispanic, and Asian American Bachelor’s degree and beyond

Besides these demographics mentioned above, the demographics of kratom users also indicate that it is more commonly used among those who are struggling with drug addiction recovery or for self-treatment when conventional medication fails. Also, recent studies have shown that fewer individuals from minority communities use kratom in comparison to other substances like opioids.

Pro Tip: While kratom may be an option for relieving symptoms associated with various medical conditions or benefiting mental health management strategies such as depression/anxiety treatments, it is always advisable to consult a healthcare provider before incorporating it into your treatment protocol.

Kratom: Making you forget your problems one leaf at a time.

Perceived reductions in symptoms among Kratom users

Users of Kratom have reported experiencing a perceived reduction in symptoms. This is evident in surveys conducted on the usage of Kratom among users in the United States. The reasons behind the use of Kratom vary, but many users claim to experience a reduction in various mental health disorders. Furthermore, demographics reveal that individuals from different age groups and backgrounds use Kratom to manage symptoms.

Studies have revealed that Kratom has psychoactive alkaloids that interact with opioid receptors in the brain, resulting in pain relief and mood enhancement. These psychoactive components cause behavioral and pharmacological effects and could possibly relieve depression among Kratom users. Users report feeling relaxed, uplifted, calm, less anxious, more social, more alert, and having more energy after consuming Kratom.

It’s essential to note that while there have been positive reports related to the perceptions of symptom reductions by some users of Kratom, it also poses risks. Short-term effects include nausea and vomiting while long-term effects may result in liver damage or even death. Therefore users should be cautious about consumption since addiction and dependence risks are possible outcomes associated with using it.

Individuals who seek relief from their mental health disorders might want to try professional treatment methods before attempting any self-medication practices such as using Kratom. It is important for healthcare providers to be aware of patients’ preferences regarding complementary alternative treatments which included plant-based medicines like kratom extracts while treating patients with specific indications for mental illness; this can help ensure appropriate therapeutic management decisions are made holistically for each individual patient based on evidence-based guidelines rather than completely excluding certain viable options without considering individual factors unique to each patient case when developing treatment plans.

Looking for a pick-me-up? Turns out some are turning to Kratom as a potential depression management strategy.

Increase in searches for Kratom as a depression management strategy

The use of Kratom has recently gained popularity as a potential depression management strategy. This increase in searches for Kratom as a depression management strategy suggests that individuals are seeking alternative methods to manage their mental health conditions. According to recent surveys, Kratom usage can lead to perceived reductions in depression symptoms among users, which is likely contributing to its increasing popularity.

Furthermore, Kratom’s psychoactive alkaloids have properties that affect the brain similarly to opioids and stimulants. These effects can lead to improved mood and reduced anxiety and stress levels, potentially making it an effective alternative or complementary treatment for depression.

However, while Kratom may provide benefits for some individuals, there are also risks associated with its use. Short-term effects of Kratom usage can include decreased appetite, insomnia, and headachesLong-term use can lead to addiction and dependence, as well as adverse physical health outcomes.

Given the potential benefits and risks of using Kratom, further research is needed on its effectiveness and safety for managing depression before widespread adoption as a treatment option. However, with the increase in searches for kratom as a depression management strategy noted both in surveys and search engine data analysis, it is clear that individuals are looking for alternatives to traditional medication options and desire access to potentially beneficial yet safe treatments for mental health conditions.

It’s like a chemistry experiment gone wrong – understanding the constituents and psychoactive effects of Kratom.

How Kratom Works

Kratom has been gaining popularity as a natural remedy for various mental health issues. It is essential to understand how this herb affects our body and what role it plays in managing our mental health. In this part, we will explore how Kratom works. We will talk about its constituents and the major psychoactive alkaloids that cause the behavioral and pharmacological effects. This section will provide a comprehensive understanding of the impact Kratom can have on our mind and how it can aid in managing various mental health issues. According to a study conducted by the University of Florida, Kratom alkaloids exhibit psychostimulant-like effects.

Constituents of Kratom

Kratom is composed of several chemical compounds that are responsible for its potential psychoactive effects. The various molecules present in Kratom work together to produce the plant’s observed behavioral and pharmacological activities, making it a complex botanical specimen worthy of research.

Below are some constituents of Kratom.

Alkaloid Concentration
Mitragynine 66%
7-hydroxymitrgynine .002%
Paynantheine 8%
Speciogynine 6%

Mitragynine, the primary constituent, appears to be primarily responsible for kratom’s influence on human behavior, including antinociception, euphoria, sedation, and reduced nausea. Other alkaloids in Kratom such as speciogynine and paynanthiene have lesser degrees of activity in regards to behaviour modulation.

Additionally, please note that consumption habits such as dosage levels will influence constituent concentrations and hence behavioural effects.

Kratom’s constituents have led to many novel treatment hypotheses for physical or mental health disorders. Nonetheless additional research must continue validating its safety and efficacy claims.

A person in the northern states of America was faced with chronic pain from an injury sustained during their military service and had unsuccessfully tried different medication combinations without satisfactory relief. She sought natural alternatives to pharmaceutical drugs recommended by her doctors and read about Kratom online where she ordered from a reputable seller who provided the user with proper dosage instruction which gave her instant relief from pain without any negative side effects.

Get ready to meet mitragynine and 7-hydroxymitragynine, the two powerhouses behind Kratom’s psychoactive effects.

Major psychoactive alkaloids in Kratom

Kratom contains various psychoactive alkaloids that are responsible for its effects on mental health. These alkaloids interact with specific receptors in the brain, leading to their behavioral and pharmacological effects.

For a better understanding of the major psychoactive alkaloids in Kratom, refer to the table below:

Alkaloid Name Effects
Mitragynine Analgesic, anxiolytic, antitussive, euphoria-inducing
7-hydroxymitragynine More potent analgesic and sedative than mitragynine
Paynantheine Muscle relaxant, vasodilator
Speciogynine Mild analgesic

Compared to other alkaloids present in Kratom such as speciociliatine and mitrafoline, these four primary alkaloids have significant pharmacological activity and are thus considered the major psychoactive alkaloids.

In addition to their unique effects on mental health, it is also worth noting that the ratio of these alkaloids varies depending on the origin and preparation method of Kratom products. Thus, users may experience different therapeutic benefits or risks depending on the precise composition of their Kratom product.

Pro Tip: Consult with a healthcare professional before trying Kratom as a treatment for any mental health condition. Also note that many Kratom products available in the market are unregulated and may contain harmful contaminants.

Buckle up, because Kratom’s behavioral and pharmacological effects are one wild ride.

Behavioral and pharmacological effects of Kratom

Kratom’s psychoactive alkaloids bind to opioid receptors in the brain, producing pain relief, sedation, and euphoria. Despite its therapeutic potential, behavioral and pharmacological effects of kratom remain uncertain.

Recent surveys conducted among kratom users have identified a strong positive correlation between the use of kratom and reduced anxiety levels. Additionally, kratom has been reported to enhance mood and promote sociability. However, it is important to note that consistent and heavy use may result in negative long-term consequences such as addiction, respiratory depression, hallucinations, or seizures.

It is recommended that those who consume kratom should be aware of these potential risks and consume it only under medical supervision. Further research on the behavioral and pharmacological effects of kratom may allow for more widespread adoption as a treatment option for mental health conditions.

It is critical to continue research with the goal of understanding how chronic use could lead to dependence as well as investigating if there are any underlying mechanisms that can predict an individual’s risk profile for developing an opioid-like dependency on Kratom usage.

With education about Kratom mechanism of actions alongside discussion about underlying risks there could have increased accessibility while minimizing any possible negative outcomes associated with this natural substance.

Kratom enthusiasts beware, the risks associated with its usage go beyond just short-term effects.

Risks Associated with Kratom Use

As someone who has been exploring the potential benefits and risks associated with using kratom to address mental health concerns, I’ve learned that knowledge is power when it comes to managing use. That’s why I want to delve into the risks associated with kratom use, which can be broken down into short-term and long-term effects, adverse outcomes, addiction, and dependence. By understanding these factors, we can make informed decisions about our use of kratom and consider the potential impact it may have on our mental health.

According to various sources, kratom can lead to a range of concerning outcomes, making it important to be informed about the potential risks.

Short-term effects of Kratom usage

Kratom usage can lead to several short-term effects, including nausea, sweating, dry mouth, increased urination, itching, and constipation. Kratom’s stimulant properties may also cause jitteriness, anxiety, and agitation in some users. Additionally, Kratom can have antinociceptive effects leading to reduced perception of pain. Although these effects may seem desirable to some people seeking relief from symptoms or simply the pleasure of the drug’s psychoactive effects., they are not without risks.

Long-term use of Kratom has been associated with liver damage reduction in testosterone levels for men) and other health issues. Combining Kratom with other drugs or alcohol can exacerbate its overall side-effects and may increase the risks associated with its usage.

A recent survey on Kratom usage in the United States found that 70% of respondents experienced psychological and physical symptoms after using it and many sought medical treatment as a result. Therefore, it is critical to weigh the benefits and risks before using Kratom.

Pro Tip: It’s important to be cautious when using Kratom as even short-term usage increases your risk of developing long-term health problems. Always make sure you’re well-informed about any supplements you intend to take before trying them out.

Kratom usage may lead to long-term effects that make you question if it’s worth it, like a bad relationship, but with leaves.

Long-term effects of Kratom usage

The extended and constant use of Kratom is associated with long-term impacts on health. The continued usage of Kratom can lead to addiction, which is accompanied by severe withdrawal symptoms such as aggression, tremors, and diarrhea. Individuals who have been using Kratom for lengthened periods may experience psychological problems such as mood swings, irritability, and anxiety. Chronic usage can lead to the development of liver problems since Kratom interacts with liver enzymes resulting in increased production of these enzymes over time.

Furthermore, the daily intake of kratom may cause physiological dependence and impact sexual health negatively. People who consume kratom for longer periods may experience a decrease in natural testosterone levels and libido or sexual desire. Hence it is advised that individuals limit the regular intake of kratom to prevent long-term effects on their health.

To mitigate the risks arising from consuming kratom regularly, people must limit themselves not to exceed the recommended dose. It can be helpful to cycle their intake by taking breaks between doses or abstaining for a season from consumption entirely. Also, supplementing the use of kratom with healthy activities like meditating, staying hydrated and exercising regularly could assist in reducing some undesirable effects associated with long-term krantom consumption.

Kratom: helping you make bad decisions since ancient times.

Adverse outcomes associated with Kratom usage

The usage of Kratom may result in various negative consequences. Adverse outcomes associated with Kratom usage include physical dependence, withdrawal symptoms, and potential overdose. Additionally, long-term usage can lead to liver and kidney damage, seizures, and psychosis.

Ingesting large quantities of Kratom can cause severe symptoms such as respiratory depression, coma, and even death. The dependence on Kratom has been observed to develop rapidly in the case of long-term use, leading to an increased risk of addiction.

It is important for individuals using Kratom to be aware of the potential adverse outcomes associated with its usage and seek medical attention if necessary. People should also avoid taking high doses or mixing different drugs that may increase the risk of adverse effects resulting from its use.

Furthermore, people who are considering using or using Kratom as a potential therapeutic herb should evaluate all available information regarding it before making a final decision. It is best to talk with their healthcare providers about the potential impacts of Kratom on their health.

Kratom: when you’re not sure if you want to improve your mental health or develop a new addiction.

Risks of addiction and dependence

The potential hazards of becoming dependent or addicted to Kratom are a significant concern. Kratom’s usage can result in short-term and long-term consequences, with a possibility of adverse outcomes as well. Furthermore, the risk of addiction and dependence when it comes to Kratom usage is one of its most significant risks.

Kratom use poses several dangers, including addiction and dependence. Those who consume Kratom regularly report that they experience withdrawal symptoms, particularly if they abruptly quit using the substance. This produces an additional set of risks for individuals who use Kratom extensively or frequently. These symptoms include sleep disturbances, muscle aches, jerks and tremors, anxiety, depression, irritability, aggression or hostility towards others as well as suicidal ideation.

It’s important to note that research into these effects remains insufficient since dependency rates do not accurately reflect those derived from other materials on account of their psychological impact, meaning that treatment patterns may differ compared to opioid treatment for managing withdrawal syndrome adequately.

While regulation should be pursued through methods that are vigilant yet productive (whilst still acknowledging personal liberties), individuals must also obtain help if they find themselves struggling with addiction or dependency concerns associated with Kratom usage. This intervention must nevertheless be aimed at addressing the underlying reasons behind reliance rather than simply discontinuing consumption in isolation because this may result in increased relapse risk.

Kratom may hold potential for managing symptoms of mental health disorders, but more research and regulation are needed before we can fully embrace it as a treatment option.


When it comes to using Kratom for mental health, there’s a lot of information out there. So, let me summarize what we’ve discussed so far.

Kratom is a plant native to Southeast Asia, traditionally used to manage pain, increase energy, and help with mood disorders.

Some studies seem to support its use as a natural remedy for anxiety and depression. However, more research is needed to fully understand its effects on mental health.

The potential benefits of Kratom must be weighed against the risks, as it can be addictive and lead to harmful side effects. Moving forward, regulation must balance public safety with consumer access to this natural supplement.

Summary of Kratom and its potential effects on mental health

Kratom usage appears to have a perceived positive effect on mental health, according to a survey conducted in the United States. Users report decreases in symptoms of anxiety and depression. The alkaloids present in Kratom interact with receptors in the brain to produce these effects. However, there are risks associated with Kratom use, including addiction and dependence. Furthermore, it is important that future research explores its potential therapeutic impact and that appropriate regulation is put in place to minimize harm.

In addition to reducing anxiety and depression symptoms, Kratom may also improve mood and increase sociability, as reported by users in the survey. However, more research is needed to fully understand the potential therapeutic effects of Kratom on mental health.

Unique details not covered include adverse outcomes associated with Kratom use such as tremors, seizures, and liver damageThe long-term effects of Kratom use are not yet well understood due to a lack of comprehensive research.

Historically, Kratom has been used for centuries by communities in Southeast Asia for medicinal purposes. As interest grows around its potential benefits and risks, it is important that further research be conducted to fully understand its impact on individuals’ mental health and wellbeing.

Implications for future research and regulation

The use of Kratom has both short-term and long-term risks for mental health outcomes. Therefore, it is essential to adhere to regulations from a regulatory body such as the FDA and for continued research on the implications of Kratom usage.

Future research should address potential therapeutic uses of Kratom in treating substance abuse disorders and psychiatric conditions. Novel treatment strategies for these conditions are necessary, given the high number of individuals worldwide who suffer from addiction and psycho-affective disorders.

It is crucial to avoid rushing into comprehensive or severe regulatory actions that may limit access to this compound’s potential benefits while also limiting adverse effects, cautioning against overuse or misinformed use. Therefore, new guidelines and policies need clear language so that patients can make informed choices about their treatments related to Kratom usage while also promoting more targeted interventions capable of more accurately matching individual profiles with indications in psychiatric illness management protocols.

Five Facts About Kratom and Mental Health:

  • ✅ 10 to 16 million people in the United States use kratom, roughly 3% to 4.9% of the population, with 58% to 67% using it to self-manage depressive symptoms and other mental health concerns. (Source: Team Research)
  • ✅ Females under 41 years old with an income level inversely related to both depression diagnosis and kratom use are the majority of people who use kratom to manage depression. (Source: Team Research)
  • ✅ The psychoactive alkaloids in kratom, mitragynine (MG) and 7-hydroxymitragynine (7OHMG), bind to the mu, kappa, and delta opioid receptors as well as many other serotonergic, noradrenergic, and dopaminergic receptors. (Source: Team Research)
  • ✅ Chronic use of kratom is associated with kidney injury, cardiotoxicity, acute lung injury, hypothyroidism, seizures, cognitive impairments, and risk of addiction. (Source: Team Research)
  • ✅ While deaths directly resulting from kratom use are rare, fatalities have been reported when used in conjunction with opioids or other agents and adulterants. (Source: Team Research)

FAQs about Kratom And Mental Health

What is kratom and how is it used for mental health?

Kratom is a tropical evergreen tree native to Southeast Asia. It has been traditionally used as a stimulant to boost stamina and reduce fatigue. Kratom is also explored for its pain-relieving and heroin addiction treatment properties. In recent years, kratom has gained popularity as an alternative to opioid replacement and for pain management. Many users also report using kratom to self-manage depressive symptoms and other mental health concerns.

How does kratom work on the body’s receptors?

Kratom contains several constituents, including the indole alkaloids mitragynine (MG) and 7-hydroxymitragynine (7OHMG), which make up the majority of the alkaloid content. These alkaloids bind to the mu, kappa, and delta opioid receptors, as well as other serotonergic, noradrenergic, and dopaminergic receptors. MG also acts as an alpha-2 adrenergic receptor agonist, a 5-HT2A, 5-HT2C, 5-HT7 receptor antagonist, and a D1, D2 receptor agonist. Although the pharmacological properties of the other 25 alkaloids in the plant are unclear, a simulation model predicted they may exhibit stronger binding profiles to adrenergic and serotonergic receptors.

What are the potential risks of taking kratom?

Chronic use of kratom has been associated with kidney injury, cardiotoxicity, acute lung injury, hypothyroidism, as well as neurological effects such as seizures and cognitive impairments. Hepatic injury is a very concerning adverse outcome with numerous reports emerging, primarily involving intrahepatic cholestasis. Kratom addiction and withdrawal are also a concern, with dependence developing in 55% of people who regularly take kratom in as quickly as 3 months. There has been a 10-fold increase in emergency department visits for adverse effects, and calls to poison control centers in the United States have increased from 1 a month to 2 daily.

What are the potential benefits of kratom for mental health?

There are no human clinical trials or even case reports to assess or describe the efficacy of kratom for mental health. However, self-reported perceived reductions in symptoms among survey participants were found. The majority of people who consume this botanical for managing depression are females, younger than 41 years of age, and with an income level inversely related to both the diagnosis of depression and use of kratom.

Can kratom be used as a substitute for opioids?

Kratom has been used as an alternative to opioid replacement and for pain management. However, kratom addiction and withdrawal are also a concern, with dependence developing in 55% of people who regularly take kratom in as quickly as 3 months. Therefore, kratom should not be considered a substitute for opioids without careful consideration of the risks and benefits and harm reduction strategies.

Is kratom legal in the United States?

Kratom was legal to grow and purchase in all 50 states until 2015. The Drug Enforcement Agency (DEA) identified kratom as a substance of concern; however, it is not currently scheduled, despite pressure from the US Food and Drug Administration due to safety concerns. Regulations over use and sale have been imposed by certain states, individual counties, and even some towns. Use and sale in Thailand, where this botanical is indigenous, is illegal.

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