Citation: NCLKN. "Nice Downer, Eases Anxiety and Mellows: experience with Kava (paste) (ID 81510)". Erowid.org. Oct 8, 2009. erowid.org/exp/81510
For the record, I have been in search of anti-anxiety medication for a while. I have a lot of experience with kava, having taken it in many forms. The kava pills, while effective, often involve taking a lot of them to work.
I become very loosened on kava. In cases of extreme anxiety, the pills only really took the edge off slightly, even when ingesting very high numbers of pills (20+). Before I would have panic attacks for very tiny anxiety-provoking things, and I would sweat a lot. The kava would mellow me out, and I wouldn't sweat or worry about things as much anymore. There is a definite dulling of everything, not so extreme as alcohol. I also become somewhat carefree and slightly more sociable. For introverts like me, this is a god-send! The 84% 'active kavalactones' paste is even better, with no kava burps! I take a pea-sized amount or so and just simple knock it down, with some water. The back of my tongue and my lips, if some gets on my lips, both become numb and, although the taste is somewhat earthy and the texture is a little rough, it is nowhere near as bad at the burps. I find the numbing to be a little neat.
So, overall, a nice dulling of everything, but I don't become 100% carefree or lose total control like I might with alcohol. Great for easing anxiety and becoming more chatty.
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