Best Kratom for Pain and Depression

Last Updated on

Pain, depression, and mental health disorders affect a significant proportion of the population. According to this survey, about 17% of adults between 18 and 25 reported major depressive episodes.

Unfortunately, for some people, traditional prescription medicines and methods don’t bring relief. Kratom has been gaining popularity around the globe for its effectiveness in treating pain and depression. If you are curious how this tropical tree in South Asia can be a natural alternative, read on.

This guide will cover all the details about Kratom, its specific strains, and what is the best Kratom for pain and depression.

What is Kratom?

A tropical tree from the same family as the coffee plant, Mitragyna Speciosa is more commonly known as Kratom. In many countries Kratom is a legal substance. Kratom comes from Southeast Asia and has been used for centuries as natural medicine with its leaves being chewed or prepared as tea.

Indigenous people used smaller doses of Kratom to overcome fatigue. They found that higher doses caused sedation similar to narcotics. A traditional healer would also use it as a substitute for opium.

kratom leaves

How does it relieve pain and depression?

Its unique and diverse effects come from over 40 known active alkaloids. The active ingredient in Kratom is mitragynine, which is an opioid agonist. The compound binds to opioid receptors in the brain, easing pain. This is why Kratom has been deemed an effective treatment for those battling an addiction to substances like heroin.

Effects of Kratom

All the effects of Kratom are anecdotal. In addition to stimulating, relaxing, alleviating pain, and promoting empathy and euphoria, it is also claimed to induce vivid dreams.

Some adverse effects include nausea, vomiting, dry mouth, dizziness, constipation, and even addiction, with potential withdrawal pangs. 

People who have suffered from addiction have reported jaundice and liver damage. But in normal doses, the substance is believed to be safe.

Since Kratom is considered a dietary supplement, it has not been regulated and approved by the U.S Food and Drug Administration (FDA) for treating depression and anxiety. More research would be required to prove its efficacy.

What does Kratom feel like?

You can feel energized and concentrate better with doses of 2-6 grams of powdered leaf. In regular doses, Kratom does not give you a high; rather it can bring a sense of calm, relaxation, slight euphoria, and sometimes a chatty mood to the user.

Generally, users do not experience very strong, lively and euphoric effects. Most people say that it just puts them in a good mood.

When taken in higher doses it can have sedating effects similar to an opiate. In high doses, you run the risk of anxiety and intense nausea. 

For some as little as 3 gm can induce sedation, while more than 6 would be necessary for others. In determining how it affects you, tolerance and individual brain chemistry play a significant role.

Some individuals have tried strains of Kratom from multiple vendors which didn’t seem to have any effect.  So, the quality of the leaf also plays a massive role in determining Kratom’s potency.


There isn’t a lot of information on the correct dosage. It will depend on the severity of your 

condition, age, gender, type of strain, and even the way you ingest it. If you have never tried Kratom before, you should start small. You can start from 2-3 gm. Up to 5 gm is considered a moderate dose. 5-15 gm is high and beyond that Kratom can be toxic. 

Ways of ingestion

There are several ways of ingesting Kratom: as a powder, capsules, tablets, extracts, or tinctures.

There is a popular method of taking Kratom called toss-and-wash. Weigh the exact amount, tip it into a glass, add some warm water to create a sludgy mixture and drink it.

It can even be consumed as tea. For this you will need to add lemon as this will pull all the alkaloids from the Kratom into the water. Some prefer to take it in capsulated form.

Duration of the effects

The effects usually begin to manifest in about 30 minutes to an hour. An average dose can last for 3-6 hours. The total impact of the dosage also depends on your gut. If you have just had a heavy meal then the Kratom will take longer to absorb and may not be as intense.

Different strains and their effects 

There are three main strains of Kratom:

  • Red vein: It is the closest you can get to actual opiate. There’s a feeling of euphoria associated with it as it is very sedating and relaxing.
  • White vein: It stimulates the central nervous system. There is an increase in energy and concentration. It is used as a nootropic substance. 
  • Green vein: This vein provides stimulation and adequate euphoria, resembling a mix of white and red veins.

The names are derived from the color of the veins you see on the bottom of the leaves. 

Best Kratom for pain and depression

Kratom strains contain differing amounts of alkaloids which is why certain strains are a preferred option to treat depression and anxiety.

The three well-known kratom strains for pain and depression are Maeng Da, Green Malay, and Red Bali. In addition to alleviating stress, they also provide various other benefits.

different kinds of kratom

Maeng Da

Most kratom strains are named based on their places of origin. Maeng Da strain originates in Thailand. Maeng da can be white, green, or red. Some people become talkative after taking Maeng da. This effects of this potent strain last longer and are the preferred choice for treating anxiety and depression. Red Maeng Da is the best Kratom for pain and depression.

The red Maeng Da is the most popular and is known to offer the full range of Kratom’s effects compared to other strains. Red is the strongest of the three and is better for managing pain and improving sleep. Because of its calming effects, this strain helps overcome sleeplessness induced by stress, depression, or anxiety. 

Due to its powerful sedative properties it is advisable not to use Red Maeng Da while driving or handling machinery.

White is better for mild stimulation. It induces feelings of well-being, increases energy, and boosts focus. It does not have strong sedative effects. White is more like a quick energizer.

There is an excellent middle ground between the two: the green Maeng Da. It offers a more vital stimulation that helps in active relaxation. It is suitable for soothing your muscles and relieving pain. It also supports mood-enhancing effects while calming anxiety. 

Green Malay

Green Malay is harvested from Malaysia. This widely used strain relieves chronic aches and pains caused by anxiety, sleeplessness, fever, and digestive disorders.

The effects of Green Malay are sustained longer. It provides high levels of pain relief and does not have a strong analgesic effect and is, therefore, safe to consume at any time of the day. 

Green Malay is the best Kratom for pain among the green vein varieties. Like most green strains, this one is said to improve mood. Users have reported a sense of calmness and general well-being after consuming it. 

In addition to providing a stronger sense of focus, some users have reported replacing caffeine with this strain. Green Malay also alleviates discomfort caused by stress and anxiety. 

Red Bali

Red Bali is harvested in Bali mostly but can also be sourced from Sumatra and Borneo. It is widely available and not as expensive as some of the other strains. There is a greater concentration of alkaloids in the soil there, making the leaves of the plant more potent.

Red Bali is one of the most robust varieties available in the red vein strain. Whilst not being as strong as the Maeng Da,  Red Bali does however, tend to have longer-lasting effects making it more effective for people who suffer from chronic pain.

Is Kratom an opiate?

Kratom is not considered an opiate. Even though Kratom hits some of the same opioid receptors as some of the traditional opiates, the euphoric effects of Kratom don’t even come close to them. But the positive effects of Kratom are thought to be potent enough to rival some of the traditional medications for pain relief.

Side effects

The effects of Kratom are generally not harmful but side effects are possible. Users reported only minor or moderate reactions.

Mild side effects like drowsiness, frequent urination, headache, constipation, dizziness, dry mouth, moodiness, nausea, and vomiting.

Severe side effects like insomnia, memory problems, psychosis, heart palpitations,

loss of appetite or liver problems.

Kratom tends to interact with other substances including alcohol and medication. It may lead to life-threatening complications.    

Kratom in itself can be addictive. Frequent use will develop a tolerance meaning you will need higher doses to feel the effects eventually leading to adverse side effects that may exacerbate anxiety and depression.

Ask a family member or a trusted friend to check on you. Discontinue using this product if you are experiencing intense side effects. Seek medical attention if you experience any severe symptoms.


Kratom is well-tolerated by many people and is a safe alternative to traditional drugs. The type of strain you use will depend on your condition. Choose reliable vendors whose products are lab-tested by third parties.

If you consider choosing Kratom over traditional medicines for pain and depression, you must understand its potential risks. Your safety is paramount.

Kratom may give you instant relief from specific symptoms, but as we have pointed out in this article, it may also have side effects which can be mild or detrimental depending on the dosage. 

It is always better to take a second opinion before you start. Begin with the smallest dose and monitor its effects closely.

Disclaimer – This article is intended to promote understanding of and knowledge about plant tretaments and general health topics. It is not intended to be a substitute for professional advice, diagnosis or treatment. Always seek the advice of your doctor or other qualified healthcare provider with any questions you may have regarding a medical condition or treatment.