Why Bother Spacing Out Your Doses?
There are two main reasons for intentionally spacing out your kratom doses — to provide consistent effects all day long and to reduce issues with dependency and addiction with long-term use.
The half-life of mitragynine (one of the active ingredients in kratom) is roughly 24 hours, which means that 24 hours after the first dose, only half the mitragynine content has been metabolized. You can titrate the doses in a way that maintains consistent doses of the kratom alkaloids in your bloodstream by taking a new dose every 12 hours.
This is the same concept used by doctors prescribing antidepressants, which have a similar half-life of about 24 hours.
Related: Kratom Dosage Guidelines.
Avoiding Tolerance & Dwindling Effects
Another reason to space out your doses is to prevent the effects from wearing thin. If you use kratom every day, you will start to build up a tolerance to its effects. On top of requiring higher doses, you’ll start to find the effects themselves become less enjoyable.
For example, many people find that the energetic and mood-boosting benefits start to wear down over time. New users, and people who space out their doses to only several times a week, can continue to enjoy an energetically euphoric experience for several hours from a single dose.
Everyday users, however, find that this effect dwindles. The duration of the enjoyable effects grows shorter and shorter. In its place, people often experience fatigue, lethargy, or fogginess.
The effects of kratom also decrease depending on how much you use it throughout the day. It’s almost universally agreed upon that the first dose of kratom taken in the day is the strongest and longest lasting. Subsequent doses are less powerful and may require larger amounts.
Scheduling your kratom doses can help to offset this effect.
If you have a habit of using kratom first thing in the morning, then by the end of the day, it won’t be as effective. The same amount produces less and less enjoyment. For many people, the natural response to this is to take larger and larger doses.
Kratom can be ridiculously “more-ish,” meaning that it is fairly easy to fall into a habit of compulsive redosing. It might seem like overkill to set a schedule for taking kratom, but this has been a lifeline for a lot of people.
Your schedule doesn’t have to be rigid either. You could set a guideline for yourself instead of a strict schedule. Limit yourself to a set number of kratom doses each week or each day, or make sure that you wait a certain amount of time before taking another dose.
So How Long Should I Wait Between Kratom Doses?
The answer to this very much depends on the type of person you are and what you’re hoping to achieve with kratom.
If you’re using kratom every day, you’ll want to space your doses out by roughly 12 hours if you can. After about a week, you’ll have titrated the kratom to maintain consistent levels in your bloodstream 24/7.
If you’re not using kratom on a daily basis, you’ll want to space your doses out by about 6 hours. It’s also a good idea to space your kratom out by about 1 or 2 days if you can to avoid developing a tolerance over time.
Kratom for Opiate Withdrawal
If you’re using kratom for managing opiate withdrawal, you should space your doses out as far as you can while avoiding the most serious withdrawal symptoms. This could be a space of 6 hours or a space of just 4 hours. It varies from one person to the next and according to the severity of your opiate addiction. The goal here is to have the longest spacing you can stand before taking another dose.
Over time, the amount of time you can wait between doses will increase — eventually bringing you to a point where you don’t need kratom at all.
Enlisting the help of someone that you love and trust can help with this. Find a dose that you can remain stable at and ask your loved one to bring your next dose every 4-6 hours.
Tips For Spacing Kratom Doses
If you have a hard time regulating how much kratom you use, there are a few things that may help.
1. Use Kratom Potentiators
Potentiators are substances that improve the effects of kratom. In the interest of spacing out doses, you would want to look into potentiators that increase the length of your experience.
There are several of these that we discuss in our article on potentiation. Some of them work by preventing your body from breaking down the kratom. Be careful, though, because doing this can still cause your tolerance to build up — sometimes even faster than normal.
2. Keep A Journal of Your Doses & Their Effects
Another good way to regulate your kratom use is to journal your experiences. Write down the amount that you’re taking and the effects you experience afterward. Over time, you’ll get a sense of what’s working and what isn’t.
You’ll likely notice a positive trend when you space your doses further apart.
People who write down their daily kratom doses are almost always surprised to learn that smaller doses also produce more enjoyable effects.
3. Cycle Through Other Herbs & Supplements
As far as herbal supplements go, kratom is certainly among the most powerful. Its power is also the reason that it’s one of the most important herbs to avoid taking every day.
Instead of taking kratom every day, you can alternate, taking kratom one day and a different herb the next. Or, even if you are an everyday user, consider staggering your doses in between other herbal supplements.
Try to avoid getting in the habit of taking these herbs and supplements in conjunction with your kratom. This might lead you to develop a habit with both of them!
Here are some examples of herbs that synergize well with kratom. When you start hankering for some kratom, reach for one of these instead.
- Herbs for Energy — coffee, yerba maté, guayusa, guarana
- Herbs for Focus — rhodiola, ashwagandha, bacopa, ginseng
- Herbs for Sleep — passionflower, damiana, cannabis, kava
TLDR: How Long Should I Wait Between Kratom Doses?
The amount of time you should wait between kratom doses depends on whether or not you’re using the plant every day and what your motivations for using it are.
If you’re using kratom every day for chronic pain, you should space the dose out by about 12 hours. Over the course of a week or two, you’ll be able to titrate the dose to remain consistent in the bloodstream all day long.
If you’re using kratom sporadically for its stimulating effects or in social gatherings, you should space the doses out by about 6 hours to avoid taking too much and experiencing side effects.
If you’re using kratom to wean yourself off opiates, you should space the dose out as much as you can stand. The longer, the better. The goal here is to only take kratom when absolutely necessary when the withdrawal symptoms become too strong to bear.