Drug addiction centers are now turning their attention to Kratom. More and more people are checking into rehab centers for treatment of the drug some call “legal heroin.” Others hail it as an herbal remedy or health tonic. It can be purchased in some smoke shops, and there are several sites online that sell it.
People are finding increasingly dangerous ways to get high. It seems like we hear about the latest trend in drug abuse and before we know it, there is a new drug on the horizon. Many of us were just trying to wrap our brains around the “bath salts” craze that, no pun intended, literally turned people into mad, raving lunatics. A man in Florida actually attacked another while on bath salts, eating his face off in broad daylight.
Some States Are Stepping Up Efforts to Regulate Kratom
In low doses, Kratom is said to have similar effects as caffeine. In extremely high doses, it can mimic the effects of opiates such as heroin. Sometimes, it’s used as part of an opiate addiction treatment program to delay the onset of opiate withdrawal symptoms. There are some indications it can relieve pain, cause constipation and induce euphoria. Other negative side effects include possible delusions, hallucinations, confusion and psychosis.
Kratom comes from the leaf of a large tree, Mitragyna speciosa, native to Southeast Asia. The United States has begun taking some action in regard to this plant. One state – Indiana – has passed legislation to ban the plant. Other states – Louisiana, Iowa and Massachusetts – have all introduced legislation to regulate the plant in some manner. The U.S. Drug Enforcement Agency has listed Kratom as a drug of concern.
Young People May Be More at Risk When It Comes To Trying Kratom
Angela Vickrey, Director for Admissions for the Austin Recovery Center in Austin, TX. said her center has seen an increase in the number of people checking in for Kratom addiction. She has said most of them are in their mid-20s – a time in life when many young people feel invincible and take more risks.
“Its new and its edgy and there’s the great unknown about it and kids seem to be attracted to that and so the best advice I could say is don’t try it- don’t use it,” Vickrey told a news station in Austin.
Right now, the drug is not federally regulated in the U.S. Anytime there is a new, potentially dangerous drug on the scene, it takes some time for individual states to get regulations in place. For now, there is one group that doesn’t see a need for laws governing Kratom. The Kratom Association, a national advocacy group, is pushing to keep it legal, saying it’s not physically addictive.