Kratom is an increasingly popular herbal supplement made from the leaves of the rare South East Asian Kratom tree. This substance has a wide range of benefits that many users find valuable, ranging from pain relief to energy boosting, focus improvement or general mental stimulation.
These effects leave many users a little concerned about drug tests, however. Many people who like to take Kratom work in environments in which drug tests are a regular occurrence, and therefore, it is important to know whether Kratom can cause problems during routine drug tests. Rather than simply avoiding Kratom from fear of drug test complications, we’re here to help you find out exactly how safe it is to use pure Kratom in an environment where drugs tests are a concern. Below, we’re going to explore all aspects of this topic in order to give you all of the information you might need in order to stay safe.
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Do drug tests for Kratom exist?
There is no drug test currently available designed specifically to detect the presence of Kratom in a user’s body, due to the relative obscurity of Kratom. Many people have no idea that this valuable herbal supplement even exists, let alone what its side effects may be, and therefore, it is not generally seen as something worth worrying about.
Kratom is also classified as a medicinal herb rather than as a drug, as it is not generally seen to cause severe CNS effects. As such, most standard drug tests are not designed to detect the presence of Kratom in a user’s body, and therefore Kratom can be used in most parts of the world with no risk of any trouble specifically for taking this herbal remedy.
New drug tests are, however, beginning to be developed in order to look for Kratom. These tests are still uncommon, and it is extremely unlikely that they will be used in any employee’s regular drug screening any time in the near future. There are many legal issues with such tests, as they exist purely due to a lack of knowledge about Kratom and a general hysteria about anything that could be even vaguely considered to be a drug. As such, these Kratom drug tests are not widespread at all, and there is a good chance that they may never become commonly used in a workplace environment in most areas of the world.
Does Kratom register on a drug test?
Most standard drug tests are incapable of detecting Kratom, and almost all routine drug testing does not include any drug test designed specifically to detect Kratom use. This includes US government official and employee drug testing, which does not involve any tests that are capable of detecting the use of Kratom capsules.
Most standard drug screening tests are designed to detect illegal narcotics such as heroin, marijuana, methamphetamines, and cocaine, but Kratom contains active alkaloids with a completely different chemical structure. While its effects are caused by interaction with the same cell receptors that opiates interact with, Kratom is not actually an opiate and contains different chemicals. Its mild effects are directed at the central nervous system in a similar way, so inexperienced users may confuse Kratom with an opioid, but chemically it is different and therefore will not register on opiate drug tests.
The only type of test that can definitively detect Kratom use is a test specifically designed to detect mitragynine particles in urine, or the metabolic products of mitragynine, and such tests are extremely rare. As Kratom is legal in almost every country globally (Australia, Thailand, Burma, and Malaysia with its Super Indo strain being the notable exceptions), such tests are very rarely used and irrelevant to the vast majority of Kratom users.
Can Kratom give a false positive on a drug test?
Most drug tests encountered in the workplace, or other common environments are based around the urine drug test, otherwise known as the UDS, as this is a fast and generally accurate form of drug testing. This test can detect the presence of specific prescription medications and a wide range of illegal drugs including opioids, marijuana, methamphetamines, and benzodiazepines in the body of users, making it a relatively comprehensive and easy to perform form of drug testing.
Some forms of urine drug test are unable to reliably detect all forms of drug with any precision, particularly affecting opioid detection, and therefore can give false positive results due to poor test reliability, indicating the presence of a drug which you do not use. If this occurs, it is important to request Gas Chromatography testing or Mass Spectrometry testing to provide a more accurate result.
Standard urine drug tests are unable to detect mitragynine or the other alkaloids present in Kratom, meaning that these chemical compounds cannot cause false positive results in UDS testing. More commonly, false positive test results are caused by other supplements or medications consumed before the test, meaning that it is important to notify whoever is running the tests of any medications or supplements that you may be taking over the period in which the test occurs.
Assuming that Kratom is the only substance you have taken before a drug test, a false positive result is exceptionally unlikely to occur. These false positives are far more likely to be caused by other supplements or medications, and a secondary drug test can easily prove that no illegal drugs have been taken.
Is it safe to take Kratom before a drug test?
Some users claim that Kratom can give a false positive result on a standard drug test, appearing as anything from marijuana to methadone. These situations are rare and exceptionally unlikely to be due purely to the use of Kratom on safe dosages before a drug test; interactions between Kratom and drugs such as Prozac or Benadryl are more likely to cause false positive results. As such, avoiding taking any other drugs alongside Kratom is recommended in any situations in which drugs testing is a risk.
These situations can be avoided by requesting a secondary gas chromatography or mass spectrometry drug test to show more accurate results, as Kratom, mitragynine and its metabolic products will not appear in this method of drug screening. The difficulty with this is that if the drug test in question is part of a hiring process, very few companies are willing to perform more advanced tests and will reject applicants purely based on UDS drug testing.
As such, it is advised that you avoid using any form of Kratom for at least a week before any significant drug screening. False positives are unlikely to occur, but it is best to avoid that risk entirely in order to maximize your chances of getting hired and reduce the risk of getting fired as far as possible.
So, overall, is Kratom safe from drug testing? Mostly, yes, but not entirely. You are extremely unlikely ever to encounter a drug test specifically designed to detect Kratom at any point, as the vast majority of drug tests are simple urine drug tests which are incapable of detecting the active alkaloids of Kratom extracts and powder. The one significant risk from Kratom in drug testing situations is that of false positives for other drugs, but that generally comes from combining Kratom with other medications rather than from Kratom use itself.