19 Apr Uses And Benefits Of Ketamine Therapy
You may have heard about ketamine therapy while searching for ways to address your mental health. What conditions can ketamine therapy address? Do the benefits of ketamine therapy outweigh the risks? Keep reading for the information you need to determine if ketamine therapy is right for you!
What is ketamine IV therapy?
Ketamine was originally developed to function as an anesthetic, but it has been studied since the late 1990s for its antidepressant effects. Research indicates that ketamine helps relieve mental health conditions by stimulating the production of glutamate, a neurotransmitter.
Ketamine helps increase the production of glutamate, allowing the brain to become more adaptable by helping it form new connections and repair damaged ones.
What mental health conditions can ketamine therapy treat?
Ketamine is best known for its ability to help treatment-resistant depression, a form of major depressive disorder. This diagnosis typically applies to people who have tried 2 or more antidepressant regimens with little success.
Other conditions which may benefit from ketamine therapy include:
- Post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD)
- Chronic suicidal ideation
- Anxiety disorders
- Bipolar disorder
- Obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD)
- Chronic pain
- Postpartum depression
What are the benefits of ketamine therapy?
One of the biggest benefits of ketamine therapy is how quickly it works. When administered with an IV, patients can begin experiencing relief from their symptoms in just a few hours.
Other antidepressants can take 4-6 weeks before a patient experiences the full benefits. As such, this can be a life-saving treatment for someone experiencing severe suicidal ideation. One study revealed that 88% of participants had suicidal thoughts dissipate just 90 minutes after emergency ketamine infusion treatment.
Ketamine therapy also is noted for its high rates of effectiveness. 85% of patients in one study experienced relief in depressive symptoms after treatment, with positive effects lasting for an average of 19 days and up to three months.
Because ketamine aids in the formation of new connections and repair of damage in neural cells, the effects last much longer. Traditional antidepressants only work as long as they are in your system.
These benefits of ketamine can promote positive thoughts and behaviors in addition to the improvement of symptoms such as:
- Depressed mood
- Suicidal thoughts
Experts note that the benefits of ketamine therapy are enhanced when paired with psychotherapy and, if necessary, other traditional antidepressants. Treatment usually consists of a series of 6-8 sessions. Some people may need follow-up booster treatments, which are prescribed if symptoms start to reappear.
A person may not need boosters for weeks or even months, and it isn’t unusual for boosters to be administered further and further apart. Approximately 30% of people who complete the initial series of ketamine treatments will not need a booster.
Are there any side effects or safety concerns?
While the benefits of ketamine can be profound, it is not a drug for everyone. There are a number of factors to consider before taking ketamine.
The side effects of ketamine therapy can be similar to those of anesthesia, even though therapeutic ketamine is administered in much smaller doses.
Potential side effects include:
- Nausea or vomiting
- Double vision
- Feelings of unease
- Health risks
People with certain health conditions should avoid ketamine, as there are some potential risks, including:
- Unstable heart and blood vessel function: Blood pressure and heart rate may increase or decrease temporarily. Heart rhythms may also be abnormal.
- Respiratory depression: This can occur with overdose, or rapid administration of treatment.
- Intracranial pressure increase
- Liver dysfunction
- Cognitive deficits: Some research indicates that this may occur in children
Health experts do not recommend ketamine for anyone with high blood pressure due to the following risks:
- Aortic tear
- Uncontrolled high blood pressure
- Heart attack
People who are pregnant or breastfeeding should avoid ketamine, as well as anyone with schizophrenia.
Is ketamine addictive?
The benefits of ketamine include pain relief, a feeling of detachment from the environment, and can produce hallucinations.
After taking ketamine, someone may experience “coming down” sensations such as:
- Aches and pains
- Impaired judgment
Some people choose to take ketamine recreationally to experience a high, often described as being separated from your body or pleasant feelings of floating. It can also cause memory lapses, sedate, and incapacitate, leading it to be used as a date rape drug. When combined with alcohol or certain other drugs, ketamine can cause very serious or even fatal effects.
It is possible to develop a strong psychological addiction to ketamine, which means that stopping ketamine can result in very unpleasant withdrawal symptoms. In order to safely detox from a ketamine addiction, professional supervision is recommended.
Due to the potential side effects, health risks, and risk of developing addiction, ketamine should not be taken unless prescribed by a doctor. A licensed health expert can properly evaluate your health to determine whether or not ketamine is the right treatment for you. It’s important to vet a healthcare provider before beginning therapy to ensure they are properly licensed and trained in administering ketamine treatments.
Experience The Benefits Of Ketamine Therapy At Home With Concierge MD
If you are interested in the benefits of ketamine therapy, reach out to Concierge MD. We are a licensed, mobile healthcare practice of a number of services, including ketamine therapy.
We offer ketamine infusion therapy for conditions such as:
- Treatment resistant depression
- Chronic pain conditions
- Bipolar disorder
- Postpartum depression
Our health experts will evaluate your medical history and the concerns you are trying to address to determine if ketamine therapy is the right choice for you. Treatments are administered by a licensed medical professional in the comfort and privacy of your home. Our telehealth portal allows you to follow up after treatment to report progress and ask questions.
Concierge MD is proud to offer the benefits of ketamine therapy in the comfort and privacy of our clients’ homes. We also provide a number of other services, including direct primary care. Contact us today!