Kratom addiction withdrawal can impact anyone who has been using the substance for some time. Kratom has been used for centuries in the Far East. In recent times, it has made its way to the West. While the substance is not yet illegal, the DEA has classified it as a drug of concern. This classification means that they see it as having the potential to be addictive. Individuals who consume it are warned that it could have adverse effects. In low doses, kratom has a stimulant effect. Some people who use it claim that it fights fatigue. Since it’s not yet illegal, it can be found infused into teas and sweets in various establishments around the country. When taken in higher doses, kratom has a similar effect to opioids. It can present as a sedative, leading to euphoria and a “dreamlike” state.
If a person starts using kratom regularly, they can quickly become dependent on the drug. Because it competes with the same receptors that opiates do, it can have very similar outcomes. Many people opt for kratom because it’s a natural alternative. It can offer a minor boost of energy to keep someone focused on a task as a stimulant. Unfortunately, once people start using it, it’s tempting to take more of it than the required dose. Some see it as a way to wean themselves off opiates. It can be surprisingly effective in this role. Kratom addiction withdrawal may affect someone who has become dependent on the drug but stops using it completely.
Dependence and Addiction with Kratom
There is a distinct difference between the terms dependence and addiction. When someone is dependent on a drug, their body’s chemistry warps around it. They find it impossible to function without the drug in their system. Naturally, this leads them to seek out the substance anywhere they can find it. The knock-on effect of dependence is addiction. Addiction occurs when someone seeks out a substance regardless of the impact using it would have on their lives. This behavior indicates someone who has a condition that prevents them from thinking clearly about their decisions. Dependence and addiction go hand in hand.
The insidious nature of kratom is that it’s been used as a “cure” for opioid addiction. Since it’s not a controlled substance, it is readily available for anyone who wants it. If someone is addicted to opioids and tries to use kratom to help them recover, it may not work out as expected. Opioid addiction can be harmful, and any way to manage it may seem like a good choice. The problem with kratom is that people who take it to relieve their opioid addiction sometimes depend on kratom as a result. The best way to wean a person off opioids, including kratom, is medically assisted detoxification.
Kratom Addiction Withdrawal Timeline
Kratom withdrawal is still a largely unstudied phenomenon. Since it’s not an illicit drug, most researchers don’t see the need to look into it. However, anecdotal evidence served to fill in the blanks. Withdrawal for kratom is similar to opiaFtes. This similarity stems from how closely the chemical resembles an opiate in its brain interactions. Withdrawal may take between four to seven days, depending on the amount of intensity of use.
Hours 0 to 24
During the first twelve hours of withdrawal, the anxiety of the person is likely to rise rapidly. There will be an increase in sweating as well. These symptoms usually start incredibly mild but accelerate as the day progresses. After the first twelve hours, muscle, joint, and bone pain begins. These are accompanied by visual distortion and nausea. During this window, the person may develop a fever, which will gradually worsen through their Kratom addiction withdrawal period. The cravings for kratom become heightened at this stage.
Hours 24 to 72
Over the next few days, depression and anxiety will start to affect the person intensely. Cravings for kratom will increase, becoming a significant concern for the person. Impaired coordination accompanied by shaking may also show up at this point. Insomnia and lack of appetite and further exacerbate these problems. The person’s fever may begin to dissipate over this period as well.
Beyond 72 Hours
Muscle pain will begin to diminish, following joint and bone pain. Nusa may persist for a few more days but eventually, subside as well. A mild tremor may stay for some period, but over time, the person will overcome it. After the first two weeks, most of the symptoms will have ended. Anxiety, depression, and cravings may continue for an unspecified amount of time. The first few weeks after withdrawal present the highest risk of relapse. It’s because of this that inpatient treatment exists at some rehabilitation facilities.
Potential Symptoms of Kratom Withdrawal
When someone takes kratom, it invariably alters their brain chemistry. Over time, as a person becomes dependent, that brain chemistry is irreparably changed. Because of the interaction with brain receptors similar to opiates, kratom addiction withdrawal may follow a similar pattern. Among the symptoms that a person dealing with withdrawal may have include:
- Jerky movements
- Runny nose
- Severe abdominal cramps
- Muscle aches
- Nausea and vomiting
- Blurred vision
- Dilated pupils
- Hot flashes and sweats
- Lowered appetite
- Changes in blood pressure and heart rate
In addition to these physical symptoms, an individual may display a variety of psychological symptoms as well. Among these are:
- Mood swings
Dangers of Kratom Withdrawal
Even though kratom can cause some terrible pain and worrying symptoms by itself, it may not cause death. Kratom may actually be easier to deal with withdrawal than if someone were trying to get off a hard opioid like heroin or morphine. In most cases, kratom withdrawal isn’t likely to cause death. However, since it acts as an opiate, it’s expected that the urge to take it to alleviate the symptoms will overcome even the strongest of willpower.
It is important to remember that even if someone uses kratom, that doesn’t necessarily make them dependent on it. A majority of people who use the drug don’t get addicted to it. Unfortunately, as people start using the drug in larger doses, the risk of addiction also grows. The tipping point happens when someone starts using more than five grams per day three times a day. At this point, the person’s body starts becoming dependent on the drug. Withdrawal symptoms may vary based on how long the person has been dependent on the substance. It will also vary based on how long since the start of the withdrawal process.
How To Ease Kratom Withdrawal
If someone is going through kratom withdrawal, there are ways to contain and mitigate the discomfort. We already know that withdrawal isn’t likely to lead to death. Still, having a physician present will help to deal with the psychological aspects of withdrawal effectively. If someone is attempting to get off kratom at home, there are several options for aiding that treatment.
Take an OTC Painkiller
Nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs) are good at treating the pain and discomfort from kratom withdrawal. Acetaminophen (Advil and others like it) and aspirin can also help manage many issues a recoveree may encounter with withdrawal symptoms. These drugs are very useful in managing pain from muscle aches and dealing with the fever from withdrawal.
When a person is dealing with vomiting, excessive sweating, or diarrhea due to withdrawal, they will be losing water. Dehydration can add complications to the recovery process. Ensuring that the person stays hydrated helps keep their body functioning through the withdrawal process. Waterworks well, but other hydrating solutions may be beneficial. Stocking up on these products can make the withdrawal process much easier for them.
Eat Small, Frequent Meals
Because a person suffering from withdrawal may have a sensitive stomach, it’s unlikely that they will keep food down. Even so, they need to keep their strength up. Eating small meals constantly is the best way to ensure they keep getting the nutrients they need in their body. Ideally, these meals should be bland, with no solid flavors or spices in them. Constant eating may also help to settle the person’s stomach, helping them overcome nausea and vomiting.
Look At Antiemetics
Drugs like Gravol or Dramamine help seasickness. They can also be used in the case of withdrawal to deal with vomiting and nausea. Even remedies like candied ginger or ginger tea can work to settle a person’s stomach and keep them from throwing up. Soothing a recoveree’s stomach can make the process of withdrawal easier to bear over the long term.
Rest As Much As Possible
Withdrawal will take a toll on a person’s ability to do anything. Even regular tasks may seem difficult for them. Rest is required if they are to recover since they will need all the energy that their body produces to get over the symptoms. Resting isn’t always a viable option, unfortunately. When someone has to vomit or have nausea constantly, they may be moving about a bit. Keeping them relaxed can aid them by allowing them to get that valuable rest time.
Use Relaxation Techniques
Deep breathing exercises and meditation may seem like new-age woo, but they can help relax a person’s mental state. These exercises remove the focus from worrying about something that they can’t affect. They settle a bit more, and this can help with cognitive symptoms such as anxiety and irritability. The intensity of physical symptoms may affect how effective these techniques are in managing the mental fallout of withdrawal.
Apply Heat and Cold to Proper Areas
If someone is going through withdrawal, their muscles may be cramping or aching. The pain may be as intense as a sprain during strenuous exercise. In these cases, applying a hot or cold compress to the area can provide some welcome relief.
Distract The Mind
The most significant obstacle to successful withdrawal and detoxification for kratom is a person’s mental state. The brain is what convinces the body that it needs the substance. To offer some kratom withdrawal relief, a person may consider using books, movies, or other media to occupy their mind. This has the added effect of relaxing the person and dealing with other symptoms like anxiety and depression.
When To Seek a Doctor for Kratom Withdrawal
It is possible to deal with a person’s withdrawal on their own. There is no need to involve a medical practitioner. However, having a doctor nearby can help to deal with complicated situations. If the person is dependent on more than one substance, having a doctor on call can increase their chances of getting past withdrawal. Another particular case may be if a woman is pregnant and suffering from a kratom withdrawal headache. Over the long term, a doctor can advise how to make detoxification a much more straightforward process. Among the ways that a doctor may help are:
- Slowly reducing the intake of kratom over time, weaning the person off the drug and making withdrawal symptoms less intense as a result
- Medically-assisted detox, which can help to manage symptoms more effectively
- Other suggestions to deal with specific symptoms
If kratom is being used to manage another medical condition, the doctor may offer an alternative. Getting over kratom addiction and dependence can be a more straightforward process with a trained medical professional to help.
Kratom Dependence Can Be Beaten
Kratom addiction withdrawal symptoms from kratom can last for some time. However, they are still milder than opioid withdrawal symptoms. Quitting kratom is easy. Some individuals using kratom to avoid opioid addiction prefer dealing with withdrawal from this drug than the symptoms that opioid withdrawal generates. Even so, trying to deal with detoxification without the help of a team can end badly. Relapse can make it even more challenging to leave the substance behind the second time around. Find Addiction Rehabs gives you a chance to find a rehab center near you that caters to your needs. Please don’t wait until it gets really bad to take action. Find a rehab to help today.