ASHDOWN, Ark. (KTAL/KMSS) – The Ashdown Police Department has seen an increase in the number of people in possession of an illegal substance known as Kratom.

According to APD, Kratom, which is also called Mitragyna Speciosa, is a schedule 1 controlled substance which makes it a felony offense to possess it in the state of Arkansas.

Mitragyna Speciosa, or Kratom, is a plant which grows in Thailand, Malaysia, Indonesia, and Papua New Guinea.

Kratom affects the opioid brain receptors as morphine which exposes the risks of addiction, abuse, and dependence. There are no FDA approved uses for Kratom.

Kratom is used in many ways, the most common are pills, capsules, crushed and smoked, brewed as tea, or by chewing the raw leaves.

Kratom affects the body in the following ways:

  • At low doses, increased alertness, physical energy, and talkativeness
  • At high doses it causes sedation
  • Addictive; causes hallucinations, delusion, and confusion
  • Nausea, itching, sweating, dry mouth, constipation, increased urination, and loss of appetite.
  • Long-term use can cause anorexia, weight loss, and insomnia.

Kratom is currently illegal to possess in the following states as the DEA pushes to ban the substance in the entire United States.

  • Arkansas
  • Alabama
  • Wisconsin
  • Indiana
  • Vermont
  • Rhode Island
  • Several other cities and counties have banned the possession and use of kratom throughout the United States