With opioid abuse still devastating the United States, people are desperate to find a cure.
Some national or state campaigns have been successful. Other people are looking to promote and improve access to treatment, while some people have turned to other substances in the hope that they may help decrease the body’s dependence on opioids. One such possible drug that is up for debate on the topic is Kratom.
What Is Kratom?Kratom is an herb that comes from a tropical tree in Southeast Asia that is often converted into various products. Kratom itself typically comes in the form of a green powder from the crushed leaves. The substance is currently legal in the United States, but a heated kratom debate has people fighting over whether the drug is beneficial or a danger.
Kratom for Opioid AbuseSome people believe that kratom can effectively treat a variety of ailments including pain, muscle aches, cough, diarrhea, and low energy. In Southeast Asia in particular, where the tree originates, people have used the plant for many years to treat such health problems.
Kratom has also been brought forward as a possible aid in the treatment of opioid addiction and withdrawal. Some addicts and advocates believe that kratom can mitigate the painful withdrawal effects of opioid detox or act as a safer replacement. Some addicts who made the transition swear that kratom has helped them regain control of their lives. A reduction in the withdrawal effects would make overcoming an opioid addiction easier and reduce the risk of relapse during withdrawal. Research on the topic is scarce and science has yet to prove or disprove this theory.
Dangers of KratomWhile some people swear by the benefits of kratom, the other side of the kratom debate fears that the substance is much more dangerous than people are led to believe. The federal Food and Drug Administration (FDA) and the Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) have tried to prohibit the use of kratom in the United States. The DEA even tried to classify the substance as a Schedule 1 drug like LSD, ecstasy, and heroin, but pushback from lawmakers and the public kept this change from going through. Kratom is now listed as a drug of concern for several reasons.
Many illegal and legal drugs can be addictive if misused. The result may be a need for residential addiction treatment or another program in order for the person to stop. Some research suggests that kratom can be addictive as well, and many fear that replacing one addiction with another won’t help the overall problem. Another problem with kratom and kratom products is that they are not well regulated. There is little control over their production and distribution. The result can be products with unreliable amounts or the presence of other toxic substances.
Science has yet to make a definitive statement to settle the kratom debate, but one thing is for sure; if you are addicted to drugs of any kind, you should get help. As a drug and alcohol detox center in Stuart, we have experience in helping people overcome various substance abuse problems. You could take the first step to a brighter future today.