Whether it is to relieve pain, combat depression or mitigate opioid withdrawal symptoms, some people have turned to kratom pills to help them. But these unregulated and sometimes ineffective supplements have serious side effects, including liver damage, hallucinations and seizures. And there is little oversight to ensure quality and safety. In fact, some kratom products may contain infectious substances or heavy metals. The FDA recently recommended that the DEA ban kratom or make it a Schedule 1 drug, which means that it has no medical value and high potential for abuse. This decision met with a lot of public and supplement industry pushback.
Kratom Pills: A Comprehensive Guide to Benefits and Usage
According to a recent report in MMWR (Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Report), the CDC has received 660 calls related to kratom exposure from 2010 through 2015. The majority of these cases involved a combination of kratom with other drugs, such as acetaminophen, benzodiazepines, opiates or other botanicals. One patient died after taking a combination of kratom and paroxetine and lamotrigine. Other reported side effects included agitation or irritability, drowsiness, nausea, gastrointestinal upset and increased blood pressure and heart rate.
Kratom is a plant that acts on opioid receptors in the brain. It also releases dopamine, which helps with motivation and pleasure. In some cases, it can also boost energy and endurance and help with pain relief. However, there are many reasons why people choose to take kratom, including the belief that it can improve their mental health. In addition to helping with depression, anxiety and stress, kratom has been linked to better memory and improved mood. And some studies have found that kratom could even help treat opioid addiction.