Dry eyes, itchy skin, and thick, pasty saliva or a total lack thereof — are some of the most common side effects after taking a kratom dose. And while you might think you’re going to have to live with them for the rest of your kratom journey, there are ways to manage those effects for a more comfortable kratom experience.
Unbeknownst to most kratom users, this triad of side effects points to dehydration. There’s actually a pretty solid link between kratom use and your hydration levels. And by understanding how the two interact, you should be able to keep your fluids up as kratom courses through your system.
Does Kratom Cause Dehydration?
The short answer is yes, it does. But how exactly does that happen? There’s not enough research to tell us the specifics just yet. However, some publications and tons of anecdotal evidence support the concept that kratom works as a diuretic. This is defined as a substance that causes an increased production of urine.
But there’s more to it than just upping your urine output. Diuretics encourage the body to flush out water, sodium, and other liquid byproducts in your body. They come out in the form of urine and sweat. But in sapping your system of these necessary fluids, kratom doesn’t only make you pee more, it makes you feel drier.
As a result of decreased fluid in your body, kratom may cause the development of a variety of side effects, and these include:
- Dry mouth (also called cotton mouth)
- Dry, itchy skin
- Red, itchy, drying, or teary eyes
You’ll notice that you probably also develop these symptoms after drinking alcohol, coffee, and certain types of tea. That’s because all of these products work as diuretics.
Is Kratom-Induced Dehydration Dangerous?
You’re probably not going to visit the emergency room after a single bout of kratom-induced dehydration. But that doesn’t mean you shouldn’t watch out. Long-term kratom users need to be particularly cautious of chronic dehydration.
Being dehydrated repeatedly and often may lead to more serious issues in the future. Some of these include:
- Urinary tract infections
- Kidney stones
- Cognitive disturbances
- Decreased kidney function
- Kidney failure
If you’re a regular kratom user and you find that you almost always experience its dehydration-related side effects, then you might be at risk of chronic dehydration. It’s even worse if you experience these effects without having to take a dose. This in turn puts you at risk of the dangers and complications listed above.
What are the Signs of Kratom Dehydration?
Dehydration can increase in severity depending on the extent of water loss from your system. For constant, regular kratom users, dehydration may fall into three different categories of severity including:
- Constant feeling of thirst
- Dry, itchy throat
- Bright or dark yellow urine with a strong odor
- Infrequent urination (once or twice a day)
- Cool palms or skin
- Lightheadedness or dizziness
- Dry skin, especially on the extremities (leaves a white line after you scratch)
- Feeling of tiredness without reason
- Muscle and joint pain or cramps
- Cracking of the skin of the heels
- Dry, cracked lips
- Dizziness and nausea
- No sweat production, even when it’s hot
- Severe headaches
- Low blood pressure
- Increased heart rate
- Craving sugar
- Flushed, red skin
- Heat intolerance
How to Manage Kratom Dehydration
It’s one thing to know what kratom dehydration looks like and another thing to curb it. If you’ve found that kratom dehydration often happens to you, then it might be high time to incorporate these habits into your routine.
Wash Down Your Dose with Water
Kratom powder’s bitter taste and coarse texture in the mouth lead some users to wash it down with a flavored beverage. And since coffee and tea typically grace the breakfast table just in time for the morning dose, it’s easy to see why you might use either of these drinks to wash down your kratom dose.
In the evening, right before bed, your routine nightcap like a glass of wine or a bottle of beer might be your washdown of choice. But again, all of these drinks cause dehydration. So, taking them with your kratom dose can significantly reduce your fluid levels over just a short period of time.
That’s also why you might feel like you’re hungover in the morning after taking a kratom dose at night. Fortunately, the solution here is simple — just take your dose with good ol’ water.
While it might not taste great to wash down your kratom dose with tasteless water, your body will thank you for it later. Some kratom experts even recommend downing your dose with at least a whole glass of water instead of just a swig.
If your oral tolerance just won’t let you take your dose with such simple terms, the best alternatives would be natural fruit juices or a sports drink, like Gatorade. By all means, steer clear of energy drinks since these also fall within the category of diuretics.
Try Volume Per Volume Replacement
Volume per volume replacement entails consuming water or fluids in the same amount that you lose. Of course, it’s tough to measure how much you pee in an hour. But experts recommend drinking a whole glass of water every time you visit the bathroom.
This allows you to restore your hydration levels every time you lose fluids when you pee. But there’s more to consider than just your visits to the toilet. Profuse sweating can also cause serious fluid loss. If you find yourself sweating a little extra, take that as your cue to replace lost fluids as well.
Again, water still takes the cake as the best drink of choice to restore lost fluids. Sure, you could probably take a Gatorade or a glass of juice now and again. But see to it that water still makes up most of your fluid intake throughout the day.
Consider Your Kratom Doses
How much kratom do you take in a single dose? Some people don’t actually know that their doses exceed their actual needs. Taking large amounts of kratom can cause serious fluid loss over a short period of time. So, it pays to manage your doses.
To find the ideal dose for your body, start out with a dose of 1-2g. Get a feel for how your body responds to the initial amount. Adjust the dose by adding 1-2g with every new use until you feel its effects.
Try to keep your doses low by avoiding increasing your tolerance. You can do this by rotating strains and taking routine breaks. This means skipping out on using kratom for a few days a week. In doing so, you keep your body from becoming accustomed to having mitragynine constantly running through your bloodstream.
Adjust Your Diet
Regular kratom users should be particular about the food they eat. Considering how kratom can sap the system of fluid, you should ideally reinforce your diet with foods that improve fluid levels.
Fruits and vegetables can significantly boost hydration and keep those nasty side effects at bay. You can also incorporate foods like soups and smoothies to increase fluid intake. If you usually take coffee or tea, experts recommend decaf to curb fluid loss.
Evaluate Your Health
Maybe you’re taking other supplements or medications that induce fluid loss. Using these substances together with kratom can significantly increase the amount of fluid your body flushes out, placing you at risk of serious dehydration.
Kratom users who take a cocktail of other pharmaceuticals and supplements should carefully evaluate how these might impact their fluid levels. If there’s anything you can cut out of the equation, then you might want to do exactly that.
Even better, you can visit your trusted physician for their opinion. They should be able to give you an assessment of your present situation and what you can do to improve fluid levels.
Take Care of Your Skin
For the record — products like lotions, balms, ointments, and other topicals will only mask the symptoms of dehydration. These do not address dehydration per se but may be able to provide some comfort and relief if your skin is particularly affected.
Lotions can help keep itching at bay, while lip balm works wonders to soothe dry, cracked lips. You can also slather on moisturizer to keep your skin from irritation and redness, especially if you’re prone to significant fluid loss.
Altogether, however, addressing the issue of dehydration should let you address skin issues as well. As long as your body is properly hydrated, then the topicals might be optional at best.
Over to You
Dehydration is no fun. Causing a slew of uncomfortable side effects, fluid loss caused by kratom use might make you wonder whether the benefits are worth the drawbacks. Fortunately, there are things you can do to curb the discomfort and achieve a more enjoyable experience.
Keep these tips in mind to keep your fluid levels up during kratom use. And if you’re showing signs of chronic dehydration, don’t hesitate to visit your doctor to get sound advice on how you can avoid further complications.