Kratom addiction is on the rise. At a time where anything plant-based is deemed healthy, there’s growing concern over kratom use in children and teenagers. Here’s everything you need to know about the dangers of using kratom.
What Is Kratom?
Kratom comes from a plant in Southeast Asia. The plant is gathered, and the drug is squeezed from it. Eventually, it’s turned into powder form. As a powder, it can be sold as a capsule or is even made as tea. In some instances, there are cafes and bars that sell kratom tea.
Analysis of the ingredients that make up kratom is vital. One of the ingredients that make up kratom is mitragynine. This substance interacts directly with certain receptors in the brain. The result is stimulatory effects.
It also contains a substance called 7-alpha-hydroxy mitragynine. This is another substance that interacts directly with opioid receptors in the brain. When those receptors are switched on, it gives the individual feelings of pleasure. Pain is reduced. That feeling grows in intensity when the plant is consumed even more.
How Is Kratom Used?
Because it comes from a plant, many consider kratom to be safe. It doesn’t require a prescription to buy it. It’s even legal. However, users of kratom are quickly driven to take more of the pills. What began as a way to help them relieve their anxiety can quickly turn into a full-blown opioid addiction.
Kratom is advertised to be a way to deal with anxiety, depression, and ADHD. Some individuals even claim that kratom can help symptoms of diabetes.
In some cases, the use of kratom is even heralded as a way for opioid addicts to reduce their cravings while they go through withdrawal. They consider kratom to be a safe way to help the addict break away from their actual opioid addiction safely and without severe withdrawal symptoms. Unfortunately, the addict may turn to kratom as a new addiction instead.
Besides abusing kratom, there’s little research about how it interacts with other medications. It may make their side-effects worse. It may make the medication, itself, dangerous. There isn’t any research to understand how it impedes or enhances medication. This could prove deadly for certain individuals.
Most users of kratom use it as a way to reduce their anxiety. That’s why it’s primarily common among children and teenagers. The pressures of life, school, and their families can make children and teenagers feel anxious. Parents who want to avoid hardcore anxiety medications may be lured to the idea of a plant-based medication instead. Unfortunately, they’re unaware that they’re actually giving their child a mild opioid.
The same goes for those who turn to it for ADHD or depression. The drug may make them feel focused and good, but they’ll quickly discover that they need more of the drug to receive the same results. They’ll take more and more until they’re trapped in a cycle. If they’re suddenly unable to have access to the opioid, then they may experience severe withdrawal symptoms. For children and young teenagers, this could prove fatal.
Withdrawals From Kratom Are Difficult
Like any addiction, when you need to break free from it, then your body will go through withdrawal. At Granite Recovery Centers, we have a detox program that is specifically designed around the type of drug that you’re addicted to. This is important because not every medication used to help alleviate withdrawal symptoms will work. Some may actually make the symptoms even worse. Granite Recovery Centers provides medical detoxification for people who do not need immediate medical intervention, are not a danger to themselves, and are capable of self-evacuation in the event of an emergency.
That’s the problem with kratom. Because there’s so little research about it, doctors don’t know every ingredient inside of it. This can make prescribing the right withdrawal medication difficult. They may find that certain medications can make the patient feel even worse.
Currently, detoxing from kratom is difficult because the common medications used to treat opioid addictions aren’t working entirely. While the withdrawal medication can alleviate some of the symptoms associated with opioid addictions, there are some symptoms that it won’t impact. As a result, the patient has to suffer through some unpleasant symptoms before their body has detoxed itself entirely.
Teenagers, understandably, may find this process difficult to get through. At such a young age, it’s hard to discipline the mind. They may quickly relapse just because they can’t deal with the pain or unpleasant side-effects of withdrawal. They’re trapped in their kratom addiction.
At Granite Recovery Centers, we do everything in our power to help you through your detox. Our doctors will continue to work with you to find a medication that gives you the biggest benefit. Our staff is there to support you through it. Sticking with the detox is essential to finally kick your kratom addiction and embrace a life of sobriety once more.
The Presence of Lead and Nickel in Kratom
There’s another danger lurking inside of kratom besides addiction, too. In 2019, the FDA conducted research on products containing kratom. Thirty of those products were discovered to have high levels of lead and nickel.
Both of these heavy metals can cause poisoning. In regards to lead poisoning, it can have a severe impact on your health. Children under the age of 6 can have such severe consequences that it can impact their lifestyle for the rest of their lives.
Some of the symptoms of lead poisoning in children include:
- Weight loss
- Developmental delay
- Loss of appetite
- Hearing loss
- Learning difficulties
- Eating things that aren’t food
Considering that teenagers are at a crucial stage of their learning, having lead in their bodies can severely cripple their ability to learn. Kratom isn’t regulated. While the FDA may have performed research on some of the kratom products out there, currently, there isn’t any regulation on its imports.
Because of this, you’re still able to find kratom products in the store. You can’t be sure if there’s a heavy amount of lead or nickel in the product. Without it being regulated, there isn’t any requirement for manufacturers to make consumers aware of its danger.
This also means that parents are able to buy as many as they want. Teenagers, stuck in the throes of addiction, may ask for more servings of tea or pills. They can even buy them for themselves. By ingesting more into their bodies, they can quickly start to have a build-up of lead. Poisoning is just around the corner.
Nickel is another serious danger to consider. Several people have nickel allergies and may not even be aware of it until they come into contact with something made from nickel.
The most common symptoms of nickel allergies include:
- Dry patches of skin that look as though they were burned
- Bumps on the skin
- Itching or severe itching
- Changes in skin color
- Red skin
Ingesting nickel may be even worse for those with an allergy. It could even prove fatal. As you ingest more of kratom that has a high amount of nickel in it, then your allergies may become even worse.
Parents Are Unaware of the Dangers
A danger in itself is that many parents simply aren’t aware that the kratom they’re giving to their children may be making them addicted. Once an opioid addiction occurs, it’s difficult to kick it. Our 12 Step Program at Granite Recovery Centers can help. We can give your child the support and education they need to recover from their addiction safely.
Once an individual becomes addicted to something, it can be difficult for them to live a life free of addiction afterward. A few can do so without ever feeling cravings or desires to relapse again. Most continue to require some form of therapy or support to ensure they maintain sobriety. We can give you those resources.
We have several different therapy programs available. We know that therapy can seem daunting or intense for a teenager or child. That’s why we have several different programs. We’ll be able to find one that fits your child the most and can become something they enjoy attending.
Through education, it’s possible to set your child on the path of sobriety for life. We can help them understand situations where they might be tempted to relapse and how to avoid them. We can show them healthy ways of coping with some of their feelings, triggers, or behaviors. At our center, your child can take their life back from addiction.
As a parent, you also need to be educated about kratom. You shouldn’t accept answers about kratom being legal or “just tea.” It isn’t. While it can be used safely, since it isn’t regulated, it’s difficult to use it safely. Teenagers may come to discover its pleasant effects and desire more of it.
Even worse, they may be tempted to use it more by their own peers. Parties may sell it to them or have it on hand. Because kratom is so easy to acquire, addiction is likely, especially if your child isn’t given the proper education about it.
Children are also great at hiding things from their parents. This is another reason why kratom is so dangerous. Parents should have a talk with their children about kratom. This should occur regardless of if their child uses kratom or not. At the very least, if the opportunity ever does arise for the child to use kratom, they’ll have the education to rely on to decline the offer.
Parents should also know the signs of kratom addiction. Some of the symptoms include:
- Runny nose
- Mood swings
- Muscle aches
- Joint and bone pain
- Jerky movements
Kratom Disguises More Serious Issues
Most parents allow their children to take kratom because they believe it helps them deal with anxiety, depression, diabetes, or other ailments better. However, kratom is only stimulating their brain to make them think they feel better. Parents should, instead, be asking their children why they feel the need to use kratom.
Mental health is a serious issue to speak about with your children. It’s vital that you don’t make them feel weak or wrong for feeling as they do. This may only turn them away from you in the future.
Helping them find healthier alternatives to handle their feelings or ailments is a better option. Avoiding kratom altogether is the best solution.
Why Granite Recovery Centers Can Help with Kratom Addiction
Kratom is a serious problem that needs to be considered with care. If you find that your child or teenager is already addicted to kratom, then you can find answers at Granite Recovery Centers. We’ll begin with a consultation. We can help you determine whether your child is suffering from a kratom addiction or not. We can also help you speak with your child in an effective manner.
Once we have determined that your child is suffering from an addiction to kratom, we can help them through the detox process. This will likely be an unpleasant and scary time for your child. It’s vital that you rely on our experienced doctors. Because we regularly handle several opioid addictions, we have confidence that we can create a detox program that will fit the unique needs of your child as well.
Once the kratom has completely left their body, your child will be ready for therapy. During these sessions, we’ll figure out the triggers that caused your child to want kratom in the first place. Once we’ve linked those behaviors, we can help your teenager to learn how to associate good behaviors with the trigger instead. This will help them seek a healthier coping mechanism in the presence of their trigger instead of relying on kratom.
Your child doesn’t have to go through therapy alone either. We have several group therapy programs made up of children their own age that they may enjoy joining. With a firm support group at their back, your child can recover and embrace a life free from kratom addiction.
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