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Kratom for Treating Opioid Dependence

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The quality for which kratom is most often sought is its ability to act as an opioid alternative. Countless Americans have begun taking this all-natural product to cut back on or even completely stop their opioid medications.

Kratom works so well in this capacity because it contains alkaloids (nitrogenous organic compounds) that are known as opioid agonists. Opioid agonists aren’t opioids, strictly speaking, but they do work with the body in a similar way, interacting with the same receptors – found in the brain and certain places in the body – as do opioids.  Binding to these receptors affects certain functions such as pain recognition, anxiety levels, and mood.

Specifically, kratom can be used for pain management; when the plant is taken in lieu of opioids, the body doesn’t panic and begin the painful and debilitating withdrawal symptoms that usually plague people who quit opioids cold turkey.

Kratom therefore takes the place of opioids, but with some important differences. Kratom seems to bind to opioid receptors that affect addiction and euphoric sensations less heavily, and as a result kratom is considered less addictive and psychoactive than opioids. Indeed, most patients who use kratom will tell you if you want to get “high”, look somewhere else. Kratom is, above all, an herbal supplement. However, if you’re struggling with one of the conditions or symptoms for which kratom is well-suited, you may find the plant can help you return to “normal”.

Instead, most patients find they can ease themselves off opioids and onto kratom with very mild or even no withdrawal symptoms at all. Most significantly – this supplementation still allows them to fight the crippling chronic pain that forced them to use opioids in the first place. And while tolerance to kratom can build (like any substance from coffee to opioids), many people find they stay on it because it helps, not because they can’t stop. For this reason, among others, research has shown kratom is a safer alternative, and that “the benefits outweigh the risks.”

At Original Harvest, we strongly recommend our customers use kratom with care and intelligence. This means no mixing kratom with other supplements or medications, and taking only the lowest necessary dose, just once a day at most. You can read more about kratom dosage and the shifting of effects based on dose. Following these recommendations, kratom is a safer and much more affordable alternative to other pain management options.

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