How Severe is Kratom Addiction?

How Severe is Kratom Addiction?

Kratom is addictive

Kratom leaves grow on a tree in Southeast Asia, mainly Thailand, Indonesia, and Malaysia. Kratom is now illegal in these countries. Kratom has a wide range of uses, including being brewed and drank as tea, converted to beer or wine, crushed into pill form, and smoked. Traditionally, people used kratom to relieve pain or relax.

In small doses, kratom is not known to be addictive. But in large amounts, kratom can become addictive and lead to severe, life-threatening complications. The main addictive compound in kratom is mitragynine.

Several research studies have proven that this compound is addictive and can lead to kratom dependence.


The addictive compound in kratom is called mitragynine. It binds to receptors in the brain and alters the mood of users, which is why kratom is considered a psychoactive drug. Mitragynine acts similar to opioids, such as fentanyl, but it is considerably less potent and addictive.

Over time, as users take kratom they develop a tolerance for it. Eventually, the user’s body craves kratom and requires more of the drug to feel its effects. This is how the addiction forms. Once an addiction forms, users have reported feeling similar withdrawal symptoms to opioid withdrawal.

Complications of kratom addiction

A kratom addiction can become quite severe. Although this is rare, there have been reports of intense kratom addiction that required medical treatment. In addition, kratom is not regulated in the United States nor is it approved for medical use, which means people who use kratom have an increased risk of exposing themselves to harmful chemicals, drugs, and other unknown substances within kratom.

In severe cases, kratom addiction led to:

  • overdose, including fatal overdose
  • kidney failure requiring dialysis
  • heart attacks
  • seizures
  • high blood pressure
  • slow breathing
  • confusion
  • liver problems
  • salmonella

Symptoms of kratom addiction

One of the main indicators of a kratom addiction is craving the drug, but also going through withdrawal symptoms when a user stops taking kratom.

According to one report, kratom withdrawal can lead to:

  • hostility
  • aggression
  • sore muscles and bones
  • jerky movements of the limbs
  • anorexia
  • weight loss
  • insomnia
  • psychosis

If you’ve tried to quit kratom but experienced the symptoms above, then you may have an addiction that requires treatment.

Treatment for severe kratom addiction

Treatment for severe kratom addiction is similar to treatment for other addictions. Treatment usually begins with medically assisted detox that helps the user withdraw from the drug under the care of medical professionals. Withdrawal can cause complications and uncomfortable symptoms so the user receives around-the-clock care to help the process go as smooth as possible.

Along with detox, there’s therapy and other after-care services available to help the user maintain a drug-free lifestyle. The entire process can take weeks or months, depending on how heavy the kratom use was.

Each person’s journey to sobriety is different. That’s why Skyward Treatment Center provides personalized care catered to the individual. To learn how we can help, call 713-815-4471 or complete our online form to get started.


Scroll to Top