Why Avoiding Kratom During Pregnancy Matters
What Is Kratom?
Kratom is a plant that is related to coffee. It comes from Southeast Asian countries like Malaysia, Thailand and Indonesia. The leaves can be chewed whole, made into liquid extract or turned into powder, capsules or tablets. Many users brew the leaves into tea or even create chewing gum with it.
Effects on the Mother
Kratom acts on the same chemical receptors as opiates, such as heroin or narcotic medications. Using a little bit gives the user a feeling of having more energy and feeling more alert. At higher doses, it reduces pain and may bring on feelings of a “high.” At even higher doses, it can make the user feel lethargic and sleepy. Kratom is addictive, especially for people who have a history of addiction to other drugs and can cause significant withdrawal if you stop using it suddenly. The problem is that Kratom is not subject to any government oversight or regulation, so when you purchase it, there is no telling what kind of dose you’re getting.
Before Your Baby Is Born
Growth & Development
Kratom readily crosses the placenta, so the unborn baby is exposed to its effects. This can cause the baby to be born too small and too early. And similar to taking heroin during pregnancy, the baby can go through withdrawal from Kratom after birth.
After Your Baby Is Born
Using Kratom during pregnancy can cause a baby to go through withdrawal and even require treatment for the withdrawal, just like babies whose mothers use heroin or other opiates during pregnancy. In addition, the baby’s fussiness can make it hard for the baby to respond to its mother. A baby who is very irritable from Kratom exposure during pregnancy can be very difficult to care for after birth.
Kratom in any form is not safe to use during pregnancy.
It’s Never Too Late!
Talk to Someone
Stopping Kratom use now will create better health for both you and your child. You do not want to stop using Kratom suddenly during pregnancy but should contact your doctor or nurse immediately to find a safe way to quit using. The earlier you stop using Kratom in pregnancy, the better outcome for you and for your baby.
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