Kratom, Addiction, And Overkill
Imagine going to your Doctor regarding your codeine addiction, and receiving a prescription for methadone; or, better yet, getting some vicodin to alleviate your horrible ibuprofen habit. Sound ridiculous? Well, while most people would recognize this as incompetent malpractice, I recently read a post concerning a person addicted to Kratom, who was subsequently prescribed Suboxone (“Bupe”) as treatment. WTF? This is like being freely prescribed valium for a chocolate addiction, in other words, utterly ridiculous and complete overkill.
While Kratom addiction is entirely possible, it is generally mute in comparison to even the most freely prescribed pain medications. However, for someone who does not know the evils of legal drug addiction, and especially narcotic abuse, Kratom withdrawal can certainly impede on ones daily life. Nevertheless, anyone abusing Kratom already knows some truths inherent to the plant.
It can be mildly addictive if taken regularly; and if done so, it is much less addictive than most, if not all, other opiates. Of course, Please be warned: This is not to suggest that it is painless, in fact, not calibrated against other opiates, Kratom withdrawal can cause a state of anxious pain for several days. Nevertheless, most people who are not opiate users, legal or illicit, do not typically find Kratom a useful experience.
Secondly, it definitely has a ceiling effect of diminishing returns, where taking more is not pleasurable, and will ultimately cause a negative reaction.
And lastly, its short half life renders withdrawals ephemeral when compared to methadone, or even milder opiates like hydrocodone.
While Kratom is the lesser of many evils, it should NEVER be abused or taken regularly unless to ease withdrawals in an emergency situation or to taper off the various more serious opiates. However, when compared to Buprenorphine (Subutex/Suboxone) it is the safest most manageable alternative to dangerous prescription or illicit drugs. Why anyone would prescribe Suboxone to a Kratom user can only be attributed to naiveté for two major reasons.
Firstly, Subutex is almost certainly causing overdoses, unlike any reported case of Kratom use. In fact, just several months past, the U.S. Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration decided to start tracking Suboxone deaths due to overdose. Obviously, there is a cause for concern considering the administration is looking into Subutex, when commonly known killers are not attracting the same amount of attention, such as Methadone. Certainly, more than 170,000 drug addicts that are currently taking the medication have something to worry about, unlike any user of Kratom.
Overdoses in drug addiction patients are typically caused by mixing the treatment drug with an illicit narcotic. For instance, the methadone patient, who decides to score heroin, to get even higher, is a likely candidate for a potential overdose. Subutex, like methadone, will likely be found to cause death in a similar drug mixing manner. In contrast, the best quality of Kratom is its effective blunting of the mu opioid receptor; in other words, it renders other opiates ineffective, almost unpleasurable. Just search the web for instances of this phenomena, especially concerning the most popular opiate pain medications, such as hydrocodone and oxycontin.
It is depressing to consider anyone, never mind a Doctor, to believe that Kratom use is serious enough to warrant an opioid treatment. I do sympathize with Doctors who have to withstand opiate abusers, and also understand the many sincere pain sufferers who are not finding adequate relief. However, to treat a coffee addiction with cocaine is not going to do the patient any good, causing serious harm well into the future and risking a potential overdose situation without any reason whatsoever.