Kratom has been used in south-east Asia for its stimulating and sedative properties for centuries. Aside from that, Kratom has a long history of being used to treat mental illnesses for that reason. Strains of Kratom generally known for their stimulating effects can be used to treat ailments such as bipolar disorder and depression; similarly, strains known for sedative effects can be used to treat ailments like anxiety, ADD, and ADHD. In this article, we’re going to explore some of these mental illnesses and the strains of Kratom that people have successfully used to combat the symptoms of these illnesses.
Bear in mind that this article isn’t intended to diagnose or treat any psychological or physical ailment. Rather, it’s intended as a suggestion: other people have had luck using these methods, so you might have luck too.
Kratom for Bipolar Disorder
Bipolar disorder, which used to be referred to as manic depression, is a mental illness and is recognizable by it’s tendency to create severe mood swings in the sufferer. There are prescription medications (mood stabilizers) available to sufferers, and this medication aims to lessen the intensity of the mood swings. The only problem with these medications is that they are, at the time of this writing, an imperfect science – they also tend to have a wide variety of side effects involved, such as nausea, trembling, drowsiness, and an overall increased desire to drink water. Granted, some strains of Kratom have similar side effects at high doses (particularly nausea) but hopefully, using Kratom will alleviate or eliminate some of these side effects.
There are a variety of testimonies suggesting that Kratom has a hugely beneficial effect. For example, some identify their previous medications as having more of a depressing effect on them – their mood swings are somewhat regulated, at the expense of depression – only to try Kratom and have their symptoms clear up almost instantaneously. Others suggest that they took Kratom initially for pain relief, only to discover that they went months without another bipolar episode. Others claim that their bipolar cycles have ceased outright as a result of taking Kratom.
What Kratom is Best for Bipolar Disorder?
Because of the dualistic nature of bipolar disorder, the type of Kratom that works best to treat bipolar depends on the day and the type of mood swing. When the sufferer is experiencing a “down” day, the best strains to use are Thai or white strains, as these strains have stimulating effects which can help the mood increase to a preferable balance. On the “up” days, the best strain to use is the Indo or Bali strains, as these strains have sedative properties that can be used to bring the mood down to a more manageable level.
Kratom for Anxiety
Anxiety is a common problem that plagues millions of people. Anxiety results from a stimulus in the environment that leads the sufferer to feel a sense of being in danger and oftentimes sufferers will feel like their flight-fight-freeze mechanism is being triggered regularly (the flight-fight-freeze mechanism is a subconscious process hardwired into humans, which help us react to threats. For example, if we’re walking along a path and a tiger jumps out, we might fight [try to push the tiger off], flight [run away] or freeze [stand in place and hope the tiger goes away]). A variety of symptoms can accommodate an anxiety attack: rapid heartbeat and breathing, sweating, nausea, numbness, tingling sensations (as a result of the small hairs on the body standing upright in response to the increased blood flow), choking sensations and hot/cold flashes.
On the bright side, the sedative effects of Kratom can help you to deal with excessive anxiety.
What Kratom is Best for Anxiety?
The best types of Kratom for anxiety are ones with sedative properties.
Borneo is a popular go-to for treating anxiety, because of its alkaloid construction. Borneo tends to be high in 7-hydroxymitragynine (a sedative, associated with anxiety and pain relief) and low in mitragynine (generally good for stimulation and some pain relief). And because the Borneo strain tends to carry with its fewer side effects, you’re able to have a little more leeway as far as dosage is concerned.
Indo is another good strain for it, though its impact tends to be a bit more variable, and on the whole, it tends to have less of a sedative effect than Borneo.
Bali is one of the most popular strains, due to its dual nature: at low doses, it’s an intense stimulant, at higher doses, an intense sedative. When used as a stimulant, there are few side effects to worry about, but at higher doses, they can cause nausea and the “wobbles”. Because we’re using Bali in this context to treat anxiety, you should carefully monitor your dosage and subsequent side effects. If you find the side effects are too overpowering, you might consider reducing the dosage; if you feel like the lower dosage is having more of a stimulating than sedative effect, consider another strain.
Red Vein strains, for the most part, are generally recognized for having primarily sedative effects rather than stimulating effects, making them good for anxiety. That being said, there are a wide variety of red strains and some of them DO have stimulating properties, so you’re going to want to do a bit of research before committing to any of them.
Kratom for Depression
Depression is a hugely widespread mental illness that affects millions of people. Symptoms can include feelings of hopelessness, despair, and a lack of interest in things that the sufferer may have previously found to be fun. It can also lead to social ostracization and, in severe cases, suicide.
When being used to treat depression, you’ll want to aim for more stimulating strains of Kratom, as these strains will help to elevate the mood and counteract the symptoms of the depression.
What Kratom is Best for Depression?
Sufferers of depression have had the best luck with white strain variants, as white strains tend to provide more of a stimulating feeling than a sedating feeling. They also provide a cleaner-feeling stimulation than other strains, such as some of the red-veined variants.
Green veins, generally speaking, aren’t a great candidate for dealing with depression. This is because they tend to have more of a sedative than a stimulating effect. That being said, some users have had great results with green strains. Unfortunately, the only way to know for certain is to try it for yourself, but take care to pay attention to the way the strain impacts you. If you’re going to experiment with the green vein, consider a Malaysian green vein.
Thai and Maeng Da strains can be good, but because they provide such a potent stimulating kick, you’ll want to use them sparingly – otherwise, you run the risk of developing a tolerance. So for these strains, you’ll only want to use them when you really need them, rather than daily. Consider developing a routine of using, say, white strain for your daily usage, and keeping Thai or Maeng Da on hand for particularly difficult days.
Kratom for ADD (Attention Deficit Disorder) and ADHD (Attention Deficit Hyperactive Disorder)
ADD and its counterpart, ADHD (attention deficit hyperactive disorder) is an illness that generally affects children and teens, though it can also affect adults as well. Children and teens with ADD and ADHD tend to find that they have trouble paying attention in school and focusing on any one thing at a time. Adults might find that they have trouble staying organized; they also tend to have a tougher time maintaining adult relationships. People with ADD or ADHD are also more likely to engage in risky behavior, such as the consumption of illegal drugs.
Unfortunately, the typically-prescribed medication for these ailments tends to be either Ritalin or Adderall, both of which have a lengthy list of potential side effects. The side effects of Ritalin include nervousness, vomiting, nausea, vision problems, numbness, and tingling; the side effects of Adderall include uneven heartbeat, hallucinations, restlessness, insomnia, dangerously high blood pressure, and schizophrenia-like symptoms.
Long story short, if you’re able to use Kratom to alleviate symptoms of ADD or ADHD effectively, and the results are to your liking, you’re probably going to want to do just that rather than rely on Ritalin or Adderall.
What Kratom is Best for ADD?
As you might have guessed, the best strains for treating ADD and ADHD are ones with sedative effects. Borneo is probably the best candidate, due to its across-the-board sedative properties. Bali in a relatively high dosage (more than 5 grams) can be good because of its sedative nature, though be careful to take note of the side effects, as Bali at high dosages can cause nausea and “wobbles”. Indo can be another good one to try, however, you’ll want to be aware that Indo’s impact can vary – make sure you do your research, as most Indo strains are sedative, but some can have stimulating effects.