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  • Mixing kratom and benzodiazepines can increase your risk of side effects, such as drowsiness, nausea, constipation, seizures, and hallucinations. Mixing these substances is usually not recommended by any doctor or medical professional.

    Mixing kratom and benzos may also put you at risk for a kratom overdose. Like other forms of drug overdose, a kratom overdose can be fatal.

    Why Are Kratom & Benzodiazepines Mixed?

    On its own, kratom is a pill, capsule, or extract that has effects similar to both opioids and stimulants. In high doses, it can reduce pain and increase euphoria like an opioid. In small doses, it can increase energy and alertness like a stimulant.

    Benzodiazepines are commonly prescribed to treat anxiety disorders. Brands like Klonopin, Valium, and Xanax can reduce anxiety and suppress panic attacks in the short-term.

    People may want to mix these substances to:

    • increase feelings of euphoria
    • help with sleep problems
    • help with chronic pain
    • reduce other drug withdrawal symptoms 

    None of these uses are medically approved for either substance, and may be signs of substance abuse.

    Side Effects Of Kratom & Benzodiazepines

    Use of kratom can cause drowsiness, sedation, constipation, nausea, and other opioid-like effects.

    Benzodiazepines are known to cause side effects in patients, including dry mouth, lightheadedness, dizziness, reduced blood pressure, and reduced concentration.

    Mixing kratom and benzos can increase your chances of negative side effects from both substances. It may also put you at risk of a kratom overdose.

    Risk Of Overdose

    A 2017 study by the CDC reported over 22% of kratom overdose deaths also involved benzodiazepines. Toxicology reports showed that benzodiazepines were the third most common substance found in kratom overdose victims, after fentanyl and heroin.

    Benzodiazepines are difficult to overdose on their own, needing extremely high doses. However, they can interact with other substances, such as prescription opioids and kratom to cause an overdose.

    Signs of a kratom overdose include:

    • extremely slowed breathing
    • unconsciousness or coma
    • seizures
    • delusions

    Long-Term Risks

    Mixing kratom and benzodiazepines may mean you are not taking these substances as directed. This may be a sign of a substance use disorder, where continued drug use comes at the cost of your physical and mental health.

    In serious cases, a SUD may lead to drug addiction and withdrawal when trying to come off the drug. Kratom withdrawal may look and feel like opioid withdrawal, while benzodiazepine withdrawal can also be difficult to handle.

    Withdrawal symptoms for both substances may include:

    • seizures
    • muscle aches
    • insomnia
    • hallucinations
    • changes in behavior
    • increased heart rate

    Why Mixing Kratom & Benzos Can Increase Health Risks 

    It is known that kratom acts on opioid receptors, much like opioids themselves. Two chemicals in kratom, mitragynine and 7-α-hydroxymitragynine, cause analgesic (pain relief) effects. These may also cause kratom’s long-term risks that are similar to opioids, such as withdrawal.

    Benzodiazepines and opioids have additive effects on the central nervous system (CNS) when mixed together, which can create toxicity at previously low doses.

    Kratom is not a controlled substance, but it may cause physical dependence. Long-term, repeated use of any drug may put your health at continued risk.

    Treating Kratom Or Benzodiazepine Abuse

    Kratom has seen use in Southeast Asia for centuries, only recently gaining popularity in other parts of the world. Its interactions with other drugs still need more research. However, its potential for long-term drug abuse and dependence is already an issue.

    Kratom can be habit-forming, especially when taken with other habit-forming substances like benzos. Taking them over a long period of time may lead to physical dependence. You may need to go through a monitored detox program to come off these drugs safely.

    To learn more about treatment programs for different kinds of substance abuse, talk to your healthcare professional or contact us today.

    Written by Ark Behavioral Health Editorial Team
    ©2024 Ark National Holdings, LLC. | All Rights Reserved.
    This page does not provide medical advice.

    Centers for Disease Control and Prevention - Notes from the Field: Unintentional Drug Overdose Deaths with Kratom Detected — 27 States, July 2016–December 2017
    Mayo Clinic - Kratom: Unsafe and ineffective
    National Institute on Drug Abuse - Kratom DrugFacts
    PubMed - The Use of Benzodiazepines among Kratom ( Mitragyna Speciosa Korth.)
    U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) - Kratom
    U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) - FDA and Kratom

    Medically Reviewed by
    Kimberly Langdon M.D.
    on June 17, 2022
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