Ketamine infusion therapy is a promising new treatment that is setting the standard for mental health care and chronic pain management. With a strong safety profile and a growing body of evidence to support its efficacy, ketamine therapy is helping people who have not responded to other treatments find relief from their symptoms.
What is Ketamine Therapy?
Ketamine is an FDA-approved anesthetic that has been used in medical settings for decades to induce anesthesia during invasive body procedures. But in recent years, ketamine has become increasingly popular as an off-label treatment for various disorders, including severe depression, anxiety, and chronic pain, in what has come to be known as ketamine therapy.
Conditions Treated Using Ketamine Infusions
A growing body of research suggests that ketamine is an effective treatment for various mental and behavioral health illnesses. These include major depression, bipolar disorder, post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD), and substance use disorder (SUD).
Ketamine therapy is mainly recommended for people who have not had success with traditional treatments, such as antidepressant medications and psychological therapies. Thanks to its unique mechanism of action and high efficacy, ketamine has the potential to provide relief for people who have been struggling with mental illness for many years.
Ketamine also has a strong analgesic effect and can be used to treat various chronic pain conditions. Some studies have even suggested that ketamine may be more effective than traditional opioid medication in treating certain chronic pain conditions like neuropathic pain.
How Does Ketamine Therapy Work?
Ketamine works by blocking the NMDA receptor, a protein that regulates glutamate – a neurotransmitter in the brain. Glutamate is involved in many different brain processes, including learning, memory, and plasticity (the ability of the brain to change and adapt in response to new experiences).
By blocking the NMDA receptor, ketamine allows for increased synaptic plasticity and neuromodulation. This means that ketamine can help “reboot” the brain by rewiring neural circuits that have become dysfunctional in people with mental disorders. This results in rapid and often long-lasting symptom relief.
The therapeutic effects of ketamine are usually felt within hours of treatment and can last for weeks or even months. Because of its rapid onset of action, ketamine is often used as an “emergency” treatment for people who are suicidal or in danger of harming themselves.
Does Ketamine Have Any Side Effects?
Low-dose ketamine infusions are generally well-tolerated among patients. However, as with any medication, some people may experience some side effects such as dizziness, nausea, vomiting, and mild dissociation. These side effects are usually mild and temporary.
It is worth noting that high doses of ketamine used outside the medical setting can have serious consequences. To avoid any potential complications, ketamine infusions should only be administered by a qualified medical professional in a safe and controlled setting.
So, Can You Get Addicted to Ketamine Infusions?
Ketamine has a long safety profile that comes with decades of safe use as an anesthetic of choice for doctors across the globe. And although more research is needed to fully understand the potential risks of ketamine infusions, there is no existing evidence to suggest that subanesthetic doses of ketamine can lead to addiction when administered correctly.
In fact, research suggests that ketamine therapy may help treat substance use disorders and addiction problems. However, it’s still likely that if used in high doses without medical supervision, ketamine can lead to dependency and other serious health complications.
If you have been struggling with depression, anxiety, or chronic pain for years with no hope of relief, ketamine therapy may be worth considering. Ketamine offers a safe and effective way to manage your symptoms and regain control over your mental and physical wellbeing.