Kratom (Mitragyna speciosa) is a tropical evergreen tree from Southeast Asia and is native to Thailand, Malaysia, Indonesia and Papua New Guinea” (www.drugs.com). It has become increasingly popular from claims that it helps with chronic pain in much of the same ways that opiates do but can also help with withdrawals from opiate or heroin addiction. It can also be used as a stimulant when ingested in small doses or as a depressant in higher doses.

While the DEA has its concerns about the safety and health benefits of Kratom, it is a legal substance in the United States. However, there are a handful of states that have banned Kratom and possession or use of this substance can lead to severe penalties. Indiana is one of the states that have outlawed the sale and possession of Kratom. Indiana legislators have identified Kratom as a Schedule I controlled substance. This means that being in possession of Kratom holds the same penalties as being found in possession of such substances like heroin.

While most of the surrounding states of Indiana have not banned the use or sale of Kratom, the most widely known use of this substance is Illinois, more specifically Chicago. There are several stores that specialize in Kratom in the Chicago area. In the meantime, Kentucky and Michigan are still within the jurisdiction of legally selling and possessing Kratom, at least for now. Kratom can be found in smoke shops and specialty stores that provide alternative and/or herbal remedies.

While the DEA has been unable to properly classify Kratom as a Schedule I substance, there are a handful of states that have managed to do so at the state level. Researchers have been unable to identify the exact benefits that come from the use of Kratom. Some users have said that the medicinal properties have been superb in helping relieve chronic pain. While others have deemed it as “dangerously addictive”. There seem to be mixed reviews on the use and benefits of Kratom depending on who you ask.