Ketamine Infusion Therapy Questions and Answers
Do you have questions about ketamine infusions and how they can benefit you? Trust the professionals at Bay Area Ketamine Center to provide you with the answers you need. Call us today for more information or book an appointment online. We are conveniently located at 746 Altos Oaks Drive, Los Altos, CA 94024.
Although ketamine has been used in veterinary medicine for years, it has recently gained a lot of attention for its use in the treatment of mental health conditions, such as depression. Other methods of treatment for depression can take weeks or months to be effective, however ketamine works much quicker, providing promising results after only one treatment in many cases.
What is a ketamine infusion?
Ketamine infusion is a therapeutic practice that involves the administration of a single infusion or a series of infusions for the management of mental health disorders, such as major depressive disorder (MDD), post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), and anxiety. Traditionally used for the induction and maintenance of anesthesia, ketamine is a noncompetitive N-methyl-D-aspartate (NMDA) receptor antagonist. As ketamine infusion clinics become available, they can provide ketamine therapy services for individuals with chronic and medication-resistant mental health disorders.
How can Ketamine infusions help with mental illness?
To learn how ketamine infusions can help with mental illness, it is first essential to understand how ketamine affects the brain. Ketamine works on a very specific group of cells in your brain called NMDA receptors, which interact with neurotransmitters such as glutamate to excite the neurons. The vast majority of the time, this is a good thing and a normal neurological function. However, if neurons stay in an excitatory state for too long, they begin to weaken and eventually die off. This leads to a sequence of events that can result in certain conditions such as depression or anxiety. Along with other conditions, depression and anxiety have been linked to NMDA receptor malfunction. Ketamine works directly on the brain to block the NMDA receptor signals, allowing the brain to create new pathways and synapses. This can aid the healing of mental illness. It also blocks glutamate, which is essential for memory and emotions. This allows patients to feel calm and forget the moments prior to or following surgery.
Although ketamine is traditionally used for its anesthetic properties, at Bay Area Ketamine Center, we have found that it has many other advantages for a variety of illnesses that can negatively impact one’s quality of life.
What are the benefits of ketamine infusions?
Ketamine infusions have a number of known benefits, including:
- Helps to manage symptoms of moderate to severe depression
- Helps to manage symptoms of bipolar disorder
- Helps to manage symptoms of personality disorders
- Helps reduce symptoms of obsessive compulsive disorder (OCD)
- Helps to manage some types of chronic pain
- Helps to reduce symptoms of migraines
- Offers a decreased need for narcotic painkillers
- Works very quickly, and continues to work even after it is metabolized
- Does not have a significant effect on breathing rate or blood pressure
Are ketamine infusions safe?
Yes, ketamine infusions are safe. However, all drugs have side effects. Although side effects may be experienced, the benefits of ketamine infusions greatly outweigh the symptoms they are designed to address. Side effects of ketamine infusions may include:
- High blood pressure
- Nausea and vomiting
- Perceptual disturbances, which may include differences in perception of time (either speeding up or slowing down), blurry vision, vibrancy of colors and hyper-detailed textures
- In rare cases, ketamine infusions may cause dissociation, which is the feeling of being outside of the body or the normal realms of perception.
In general, any changes in perception or dissociation are most noticeable during the first infusion and dissipate very quickly. Following ketamine infusions produce fewer side effects.
If you are experiencing depression or anxiety, come to Bay Area Ketamine Center for our ketamine infusion therapy. We can help you better manage your condition, especially if other treatments have failed to provide relief. Call us today to book an appointment. We look forward to serving you! We serve patients from Los Altos, CA, Sunnyvale CA, Palo Alto CA, Stanford CA, Atherton CA, and Cupertino CA.