Kratom has huge potential benefits for people. It can help ease physical and emotional pain, it can help with quitting from opiate-based drugs, whether narcotics or prescription medications and with quitting alcohol.
It can also increase your focus, your energy levels, lift your mood to decrease anxiety, and really chill you out. But the darker side is that some people can get withdrawal symptoms and find it difficult to quit kratom.
If you want to know how to quit kratom then you’ve come to the right place, as I’m going to tell you the strategies you need to quit kratom. Things you can expect, ways you can make it easier, and if there are any supplements you can take to make it less painful.
Kratom Withdrawal Symptoms
When you stop taking kratom you may be fine and never notice any withdrawal symptoms.
But it will depend on the amount of kratom you take, and how long you have taken it for. The longer you have taken it, and the higher the dose is, especially with everyday use, can lead to tolerance and potential dependency.
If you do stop taking kratom then you could experience the following potential kratom withdrawal symptoms:
- Restless legs syndrome
- Muscle aches and cramps
- Watery eyes and nose
- Anxiety and/or depression
- Hot flushes
Now that list of kratom withdrawal symptom sounds horrendous. But don’t worry so much, because most people won’t get all of those symptoms, and those symptoms can range from very minor to severe.
How Long Does Kratom Withdrawal Last?
The great news is that kratom withdrawal is often not severe, and for a lot of people it’s non-existent. In fact, one survey of 8000 respondents concluded that only around 9% of people experienced noticeable withdrawal symptoms.
The most frequent symptoms were fatigue, tremors, cravings and muscle aches. Anxiety was another thing people mentioned. But that was only in 9% of respondents.
However that is different to the results of a Malaysian study, which found 65% had minor recognizable symptoms, and 30% had strong kratom withdrawal symptoms. However, kratom usage is far more widespread in chronic in Malaysia than in the USA.
Kratom withdrawal is going to be very personal, just like the effects kratom has on you in the first place are. The length of time you have been taking it, the amount you take, and the frequency each week you take it, will all impact on the length of time you could experience kratom withdrawal symptoms
But as long as the symptoms aren’t severe, then anecdotal evidence suggests that kratom withdrawal symptoms generally only last a few days and that you will taper back down to your baseline within a couple of weeks. However, this can be longer for chronic users.
Kratom Withdrawal Timeline
Because kratom is such an individual thing, there is no standard kratom withdrawal timeline.
As we’ve already said, the frequency of dosing, size of the dose, quality of kratom, susceptibility, underline issues, there are lots of things which will feed into the severity of your kratom withdrawal symptoms and how long they last.
But generally, withdrawal can start within as little as eight hours after your last dose, as the half-life of kratom can be as short as four hours.
Anxiety, sweating, agitation, runny eyes and nose, and insomnia are usually the first symptoms in the kratom withdrawal timeline.
Within a couple of days, those symptoms will start to disappear and you will be okay, or the more severe symptoms will start to appear, things like nausea, cramping, diarrhea. If the more severe side effects start to appear, then your kratom withdrawal timeline will be longer and could last as long as two weeks.
Strategies For Getting Off Kratom
So when it comes to learning how to quit kratom, and now you understand kratom withdrawal symptoms, it’s time to talk about how you actually do a kratom detox successfully, without it being too problematic.
Note that strategies for getting off kratom have to take personal circumstances into account. If you are an alcoholic, or an opiate addict, then the side effects, duration, and strategies could all be different to someone just using it for recreation or cognitive benefits.
When it comes to ways you can get off kratom, there are various strategies you can employ:
- You can go cold turkey. If you only take kratom occasionally then this could work. But if you have taken it for a long time, several months or longer, and your dose is higher than a handful of grams, then just going cold turkey could be a bad strategy.
- You can taper down your dose over several weeks. This is the best strategy. You simply take your average dose and start to lower it a week at a time. So if you are taking 6 g of kratom a day, then lower it to 5 g, then 4 g, until you taper off completely.
- Alternate tapering strategies include short and long tapers. This is where you alter the tapering you are doing. So you could taper down by half a gram for two weeks, and then down a gram for the following two weeks, basically adjusting it depending on how well you are doing, but never increasing it. You can also fit kratom three days into this alternate tapering strategy.
Things That Can Help With Quitting Kratom
The key to understanding how to quit kratom is going to be understanding the severity of your potential problems. As we have discussed, your dependency level will depend on multiple factors that are personal to you.
Going cold turkey is recommended, so we’re talking about the tapering strategy, either fixed or flexible.
But there are things you can do to help with your kratom detox, and ease kratom withdrawal symptoms, by at least taking your mind off them in some instances.
The best strategies for managing kratom withdrawal symptoms include:
- Some supplements can help to ease problems. Magnesium, Phenibut (although drugs like this should be managed very closely as they can cause problems in their own right), L-Theanine. Basically, supplements which can calm you down.
- Walking can be a great calming strategy when you’re trying to quit kratom. Running is not so ideal because your body is dealing with stress and exhaustion anyway. But long walks in the fresh air can take your mind off things, get your body moving, promote high oxygen refresh rates, and up your mental and physical fitness levels.
- Taking cool showers can really help in some cases. It can wake you up, ease depression, and soothe muscles.
- You can take over-the-counter medications to help with things like insomnia, muscle pain, and diarrhea.
- Keep yourself hydrated and stay away from caffeine.
- Small amounts of alcohol can help with kratom withdrawal because it induces similar effects in the body. You should never do this if you have alcohol dependence, or if you are getting drunk to try and ease kratom withdrawal symptoms.
- Keeping busy is a great way to get over any dependency. Plan to fill your life during your kratom withdrawal timeline. Make sure you are not sitting around bored.
- Don’t keep your attempt to quit kratom to yourself. Involve family and friends, speak your doctor, make sure that you are holding yourself accountable to others for your success, and any regression.
Ways To Avoid Kratom Dependency
The best way to avoid kratom dependency is to simply not get depending in the first place. Then you won’t have to deal with working out how to quit kratom at all.
It’s easy to get caught out in creeping dependency. You start with a small dose, you feel energized, relaxed, more productive. But if tolerance creeps in, or you are stressed, or you are using it recreationally, that small dose can gradually creep up. It can do this in a linear fashion, or occasional large doses can over time lead to a generally increased lowest dose.
So be aware of how much kratom you are taking, what type, how frequently, and how much you are craving more. Just keep a note in the calendar on your phone, that will be enough. If three months ago you are taking two grams, three times a week, and you are now smashing 10 g a day, it’s easy to not remember that progression unless you record it. Denial can also be a factor in this progression.
Small amounts of infrequent, high-quality kratom are the best way to avoid kratom dependency. If it becomes a daily requirement, then it could be time to look at any underlying reasons for the increased dosage. If there are underlying problems such as depression, then these should be dealt with before you quit kratom completely.
Sometimes it won’t be obvious, like increased withdrawal symptoms from opiates, or alcoholism. It could be a drop in energy levels which could be the sign of an illness, it could be depression, it could be life stress.
So the final word on learning how to quit kratom is to watch for signs you are getting tolerant and dependent in the first place. But once you are, the great news is that a full kratom detox is perfectly possible as long as you manage the process properly.