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Everything You Need to Know about Ketamine Infusion Therapy (Including FAQs and Treatment Benefits)

Ketamine infusion therapy is one of the leading experimental therapies used to treat major depressive disorder, anxiety, and post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD). Tragically, millions of patients around the world suffer from severe depression but are resistant to conventional treatment options. However, ketamine infusion provides a glimmer of hope.

Since ketamine infusion therapy has yet to receive formal approval from the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA), there is little information available to the public regarding this treatment option. Understandably, there are many members of the public who are confused about the ketamine treatment process, its efficacy ratings, and its associated risks.

To help clear the air when it comes to ketamine infusion therapy, we put together this in-depth guide to everything there is to know about this exciting new treatment option. If you want to know more about this potentially lifesaving therapy, read on and discover the various benefits and advantages of ketamine infusion therapy.

Ketamine Infusion Therapy Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

Despite a large body of research having been produced in recent years on ketamine therapies, the public has been left out in the dark when it comes to the details of this therapy method. Below, we answered some of your most pressing questions about ketamine infusions and their many benefits for treating mood disorders and mental illnesses.

What Is Ketamine?

Ketamine is a medicinal substance used for inducing anesthetic effects in its users. When administered in clinical doses, ketamine provides pain relief and sedation. Therefore, it is a valuable tool for treating chronic pain or for use in intensive care units. Ketamine was first discovered in 1962 and was approved for use in the United States eight years later.

What Does Ketamine Infusion Treat?

Aside from its value as a general anesthetic, ketamine is used to directly treat major depressive disorder, generalized anxiety, and post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), among other pain-related illnesses and mood disorders.

Is Ketamine Safe?

Yes. The supervised use of ketamine in a clinical setting has been demonstrated to be safe after years of therapeutic applications and exploratory research. Multiple studies have shown that it is safe for use as an acute treatment method for severe depression, mental health,obsessive-compulsive disorder, and suicidality. Plus, ketamine lacks the long discontinuation times that frontline antidepressant medications have.

Is Ketamine “Horse Tranquilizer”?

Originally, ketamine was designed for human use

Originally, ketamine was designed for human use. However, there are many effective applications of ketamine outside of human use, especially in the domain of veterinary medicine. Consequently, ketamine has caught on among the veterinary community as a surgical anesthetic. It is not a “tranquilizer” but rather an anesthetic used for large mammal species.

How Long Does Ketamine Last?

How long ketamine remains active in your system will ultimately depend on your unique physical characteristics. Most patients find that their first infusion of ketamine will provide relief from physical symptoms for several days. With the somatic alleviation comes an uplift in mood that can last months or even years afterward.

Those who suffer from chronic depression are often held back by self-defeating thoughts that have been ingrained over long periods of time. After one administration of ketamine, patients are relieved of these symptoms for the first time in years, which can have long-term positive effects on one’s well-being.

How Many Infusions Are Necessary?

Most ketamine clinics administer no less than two infusions for new patients. The number of infusions you receive will depend on the severity of your mood disorder and your medical history. Many clinics begin by administering two infusions three or four days apart from each other. From there, the doctor will determine whether subsequent infusions are necessary.

What Should I Expect During a Ketamine Infusion?

New patients can expect to be sitting in a reclining chair during the infusion treatment between 45 minutes and a full hour. You will not lose consciousness during your experience, but you may feel mild to moderate sedation and pain-alleviating effects. Some patients report a distorted perception of light and color, among other unusual sensory experiences.

In most cases, ketamine infusion patients leave the clinic within a half hour of administration. However, patients suffering from severe acute illnesses pay to require up to several hours of supervision before being discharged. On-site medical staff will ensure that you are comfortable and safe before you leave the clinic.

Do I Need to Bring Someone to my Ketamine Infusions?

Many clinics require someone to be present during your discharge so you can be safely escorted home. While some patients prefer to have a loved one present during the infusion procedure to make them more comfortable, this is not mandatory in most clinics.

Can I Take Other Medication While Receiving Ketamine Infusions?

While most medications are perfectly safe to use with ketamine infusions, there are several contraindicated medications that cannot be taken before, during, or after your ketamine treatment. This is especially true of the benzodiazepine class of anti-anxiety medications. You may need to skip a dose in the run-up to your ketamine infusion if you take these medicines.

Common benzodiazepines include Ativan (Lorazepam), Xanax (Alprazolam), Klonopin (Clonazepam), and Valium (Diazepam). Talk to the supervising doctor at the ketamine infusion clinic about how to best approach taking these medications around your treatment. Conventional SSRIs and tricyclics are safe to use with ketamine.

The Benefits of Ketamine Infusion Therapy

There are myriad benefits of taking ketamine infusion therapy as opposed to other frontline chronic pain medications. Here are some of the primary advantages that ketamine infusion has over other leading treatment options.

Rapid Onset

According to research conducted by a team at the Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai, ketamine infusion therapies led to antidepressant benefits within 24 hours of administration. This is in stark contrast to other treatment methods, which sometimes take months to reach their full effect.

Anti-Inflammation

A breakthrough 2014 study indicates that anesthetic ketamine use has anti-inflammatory effects at critical sites in the body. This conclusion is derived from a 3-month follow-up diagnostic survey.

High Efficacy

 Studies have shown that ketamine infusions work. Up to 40% of patients with major depressive disorder report having shown adequate to good pain relief after receiving treatment, which is much higher than other frontline treatment options.

How Ketamine Can Be an Effective Treatment Plan for Depression

Every year, new scientific research points to ketamine’s potential as an effective antidepressant. Since the 1960s, ketamine has been considered to be a safe and powerful medical intervention for those resistant to conventional frontline treatments for major depression. Today, more than ever, an increasing number of depression patients are turning to ketamine for depression and relief.

Do you want to find out how you can incorporate ketamine into your depression treatment plan? In this guide, our experts break down the latest research on ketamine therapy as a depression treatment. Further, we will describe how ketamine can be safely provided by supervised medical clinics to help you find the relief that you deserve.

Ketamine: The Sleeping Giant

You may have heard of the myriad benefits that ketamine can offer those living with severe depression. At present, roughly 30 to 40 percent of the 13 million Americans suffering from depression symptoms and are resistant to conventional therapies. In other words, millions of our friends and neighbors have no viable method of obtaining relief from their treatment-resistant depression.

Ketamine is an anesthetic and analgesic substance, which means it is used primarily as a painkiller. For over fifty years, ketamine has been used as a popular anesthetic in veterinary medicine. However, ketamine lacks US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) approval, which prevents it from being regulated as a frontline medicine for humans.

Beginning in the early 21st-century, ketamine has been used on human patients at private clinics around the world. Thanks to the popularity of intravenous (IV) infusion methods, ketamine is now regularly available for adults suffering from depression. Consequently, ketamine has provided rapid relief for hundreds of thousands of otherwise distraught patients suffering from severe depression.

Ketamine and Depression

It is no surprise that ketamine has been referred to as “the biggest thing to happen to psychiatry in 50 years” by Scientific American. When administered a single dose of IV ketamine, patients can experience fast-onset results within half an hour.

When you compare ketamine’s remarkably fast onset to the weeks or months that it takes for mainstream antidepressants to take effect and you begin to realize the potential of the drug. By activating parts of the lateral habenula (LHb) region of the brain, ketamine can stimulate the mind in groundbreaking new ways.

Is Ketamine Safe?

When administered under the supervision of a medical professional, ketamine is perfectly safe. However, in recent years ketamine has caught on as a recreational drug due to its painkiller properties. Using ketamine recreationally is illegal and highly dangerous. It is important that those with depression use ketamine only at licensed medical clinics.

Is Ketamine Right for You?

Ketamine may be right for you if you have been diagnosed with major depressive disorder (MDD), post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), or a chronic pain-related illness. One should note that ketamine should not be approached as a frontline treatment. Rather, ketamine is appropriate for patients who have not responded positively to other forms of treatment.

We advise speaking with your doctor about the potential benefits of ketamine. Depending on your medical history or family history, it may be ill-advised to use medicinal ketamine. We recommend first exhausting other treatment options before you consider ketamine infusion therapy.

It should be noted that ketamine infusion therapy is contraindicated with some anti-anxiety medications. If you are currently taking any pharmaceutical drug belonging to the benzodiazepine class, such as Ativan, Valium, or Xanax, let your doctor know right away. These drugs cannot be used in conjunction with ketamine.

Finding a Ketamine Infusion Clinic Near You

One of the largest obstacles to obtaining ketamine

One of the largest obstacles to obtaining ketamine infusion therapy is pinpointing the right clinic. Although some regions of the United States, and indeed the world at large, are underserved by ketamine treatment clinics, more and more are opening every year. In fact, there are now dozens of treatment centers scattered throughout the continental United States.

A great online resource for finding a ketamine infusion clinic near you is the Ketamine Clinics Directory, which hosts a small database of operating clinics and their going rates. However, we have put together a list of our favorite ketamine infusion and multi-treatment clinics below. For your convenience, we have listed the clinics by region.

California

There are several excellent ketamine infusion clinics in the State of California. However, the services provided by Dr. Thomas Leverone at the Central Coast Surgery Center stand out from the crowd. Since 2005, Dr. Leverone has performed surgery on countless satisfied patients who have been treated for chronic pain, depression, and anxiety-related disorders.

New England

If you live in New England, Boston MindCare is the ketamine infusion clinic for you. Under the leadership of Dr. Isabel Legarda, M.D., Boston MindCare has treated depression patients since 2014. Boston MindCare operates a clinic in Lexington, Massachusetts and serves the entire Greater Boston area.

Sun Belt

One of the best ketamine infusion clinics in the Sun Belt region of the United States is the Charleston Ketamine Center. Dr. Richard L. Bowen, M.D., has served as the leading resident doctor at Charleston Ketamine Center since its inception in 2014. Since then, they have performed over 2,500 infusions for countless satisfied patients.

The Charleston Ketamine Center (CKC) is one of the only clinics currently serving the Carolinas. Located in Charleston, Caroline the CKC is an invaluable resource for those in the American southeast looking for depression relief.

Midwest

Based in Grand Rapids, Michigan, Michigan Progressive Health is one of the leading ketamine infusion therapy clinics operating in the American Midwest. Led by Dr. Megan Oxley, M.D., Michigan Progressive Health attracts patients from as far as Chicago, St. Louis, and Columbus. They are known for their high standard of patient care and daily outpatient “check-ins.”

Pacific Northwest

The Northwest Ketamine Clinicsis a network of medical clinics offering multi-treatment therapies, including ketamine infusions. They are based out of Seattle, Bellevue, and Portland, and have gained the reputation as one of the Pacific Northwest’s finest ketamine clinics. Their team of doctors and anesthesiologists have won numerous regional medical awards.

How to Identify Fibromyalgia Symptoms with this Simple Checklist

Fibromyalgia (FM) is a chronic medical disorder characterized by an intense pain response to physical pressure on the body. Although little known about FM and its origins, roughly two to eight percent of the general population is known to have fibromyalgia. Do you have fibromyalgia? Use this simple checklist to find out.

Fibromyalgia: What Is It?

Fibromyalgia is a chronic syndrome that affects the muscles and tissues of the human body. Much of fibromyalgia is not understood by the medical community. However, the condition is known to run in families, which suggests that it is ultimately a hereditary disease. It is typically linked to other physical and mental illnesses such as anxiety and depression.

Most FM patients cite persistent bodily ailments that come along with fibromyalgia. For instance, bowel and bladder irritation or irregularities are common among those living with FM. Nearly all FM patients who seek treatment cite fatigue, sleepiness, and an inability to perform day to day activities due to fibromyalgia-related symptoms.

Fibromyalgia is classified as a chronic health disorder by the National Institute of Arthritis and Musculoskeletal and Skin Diseases. It is pathologically similar to rheumatoid arthritis in that it involves chronic physical sensitivity in the body. However, it is distinct from arthritis because it does not cause inflammation or damage to the joints.

Fibromyalgia Causes

Simply put, the causes of fibromyalgia are unknown. It is generally understood that a variety of factors must be involved in the formation of fibromyalgia, although specific details are lacking. There is some evidence, for example, that suggests that early childhood trauma is a risk factor for FM development later in life. This includes any early childhood exposure to severe trauma.

For others, fibromyalgia can develop as a side effect of another illness, such as irritable bowel syndrome (IBS) or arthritis. In other cases, FM can set in after neurological damage to the brain to the central nervous system. Although little concrete knowledge exists about the causes of FM, more and more research is produced every year toward understanding its origins.

The Fibromyalgia Checklist

Now that we understand what fibromyalgia is, let us now go over the checklist of FM symptoms and early warning signs. If you exhibit any combination of the following symptoms, you should speak with your doctor about screening for fibromyalgia.

Painful Pressure Points

The most common telltale sign of fibromyalgia is the presence of painful pressure points. This is a universal symptom among all FM patients and often what sets fibromyalgia apart from other somatic illnesses. The most sensitive pressure points are at the back of the head, the front of the neck, the elbows, the sides of the hips, and backs of the knees.

Chronic Fatigue

Most of those living with fibromyalgia cite chronic fatigue and exhaustion as a prominent symptom. This symptom usually leads to sleep difficulties, such as narcolepsy.

Inability to Concentrate

It is not uncommon to find fibromyalgia patients

It is not uncommon to find fibromyalgia patients that report an inability to concentrate, otherwise known as “brain fog.” Sometimes, brain fog can manifest as forgetfulness or an inability to find the right words during speech.

Headaches and Migraines

Painful headaches and migraines are another common symptoms of fibromyalgia. These headaches are usually not triggered by any specific environmental stimulus.

Painful Menstrual Cycles

For women, painful menstrual cycles are a hallmark of fibromyalgia. This can cause serious pain and discomfort, requiring pharmaceutical intervention.

Irritable Bowel or Bladder

Many fibromyalgia patients are also diagnosed with irritable bowel syndrome (IBS) or bladder-related issues.

Sensitivity to Environment

Experiencing pain or discomfort from changes in temperature, exposure to bright lights or sudden loud sounds is a symptom of fibromyalgia.

Restless Leg Syndrome

Usually, during nighttime hours or while one is trying to fall asleep, fibromyalgia patients often experience restless leg syndrome or general feelings of restlessness.

Self-Examinations for Fibromyalgia

If you suspect that you might have fibromyalgia based on the checklist above, consider taking the CFS and fibromyalgia test. This reputable test was developed in accordance with the Center for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) criteria for fibromyalgia as well as the American College of Rheumatology’s standards for diagnosing fibromyalgia.

How to Treat Fibromyalgia

There are medicinal and non-medicinal treatments for fibromyalgia that are used to help manage the pain associated with FM symptoms. The primary frontline treatments for FM are non-medication treatments, such as regular exercise, health education, stress reduction practices, and proper sleep hygiene.

One of the best methods of treating fibromyalgia is to abide by a strict aerobic exercise regimen. Whether walking down the block every day or weight training the gym five days a week, those living with FM must incorporate some form of regular exercise into their lifestyle.

Fibromyalgia Medications

The most common fibromyalgia medications are tricyclic antidepressants such as amitriptyline (Elavil), desipramine (Norpramin), and doxepin (Silenor). These medications are capable of relaxing soft tissues in the body which can help ease pain and induce sleep for those who struggle with maintaining a normal sleep pattern.

Ketamine for Fibromyalgia?

In recent years, ketamine has been the subject of significant media attention and scientific scrutiny for its ability to treat fibromyalgia. According to several scientific reports, intravenous ketamine infusion therapy has the potential to powerfully reduce the severity of fibromyalgia symptoms.

Ketamine was first discovered in the 1960s and soon gained widespread recognition as a fast-acting analgesic and anesthetic drug to kill the pain. By the 1970s, ketamine became the leading anesthetic in veterinary medicine for large mammals. However, beginning in the early 2000s, medical clinics around the world have used ketamine off-label for treatment in humans.

Ketamine: Is it Right for You?

Are your fibromyalgia symptoms persisting despite your best efforts? Many of those living with FM are completely resistant to mainstream therapies and treatments, leaving millions of people to live in chronic pain. If this sounds familiar to you, you should speak to your doctor about ketamine infusion therapy to provide relief for your fibromyalgia symptoms.

Not only is ketamine a potentially powerful solution for FM-related symptoms, but it has also been shown to effectively and safely treat depression, generalized anxiety, and post-traumatic stress disorder. If you are interested in exploring ketamine infusion therapy as a potential treatment avenue, visit one of the many medicinal ketamine clinics around the country.

Learn How Ketamine Can Treat Post Traumatic Stress Disorder ICD 10

For decades, ketamine has been used as a medicinal intervention for treating depression, anxiety, mood disorders, and post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD). While most ketamine advocates recognize its therapeutic potential for treating depression, the many benefits available to those suffering from PTSD are less understood.

Do you or a loved one suffer from post-traumatic stress disorder? If so, ketamine infusion therapy may be able to help alleviate your symptoms and provide the relief you need. However, public knowledge about medicinal ketamine is lacking. In this article, we go over everything there is to know about ketamine for treating PTSD.

PTSD 101: What You Need to Know

Post-traumatic stress disorder has a medical diagnostic code of ICD-10, which is the code used for reimbursing treatment through your insurance provider. PTSD, unlike other mental illnesses, is characterized by its triggering from a single or series of traumatic events. This explains why PTSD is common among military veterans and first responders.

According to a summary article from Mayo Clinic, PTSD is a mental health condition triggered by a terrifying experience. The sufferer subsequently experiences flashbacks, night terrors, and anxiety attacks that they cannot control as a result of the event. It takes a significant amount of time, therapy, and self-care to overcome the trauma of PTSD.

There is no known cure for PTSD. However, many experimental medicinal interventions are breaking ground when it comes to finding a cure. For example, the psychoactive drugs MDMA and ketamine have both been studied for their potential to alleviate the negative effects of PTSD.

Ketamine Infusion Therapy

Since the early 2000s, ketamine has gained popularity among medical providers for its application in infusion therapies. In recent years, clinics all around the world have embraced the healing power of ketamine by offering ketamine infusion therapy. This unique therapy involves one or more intravenous injections of ketamine under the supervision of an anesthesiologist.

What Is Ketamine?

Although ketamine has garnered a reputation as a party drug, its primary value is in its ability to provide fast-acting and potent relief for those with chronic pain issues. Ketamine was first synthesized in the 1960s and was later adopted as an anesthetic in veterinary medicine by the end of the decade. However, use in humans was initially sparse.

Ketamine is both an analgesic and anesthetic drug, which means its primary quality is to reduce or prevent pain. This makes ketamine highly effective for treating major depressive disorder, chronic back pain, and PTSD.

Ketamine and PTSD

Ketamine-infusion-clinics-across-mi

Ketamine infusion clinics across the United States are now offering specialty treatments for those suffering from PTSD. For example, the renowned Ketamine Clinics of Los Angeles has treated hundreds of PTSD patients over the years. Led by Dr. Steven Mandel, M.D., the team at Ketamine Clinics of LA has a proven track record of helping relieve the pain of PTSD.

An increasing amount of scientific research has proven that ketamine is effective in treating PTSD. Most notably, a breakthrough 2014 study in JAMA Psychiatry discovered that a single intravenous subanesthetic dose of ketamine resulted in “significant and rapid reduction in PTSD symptom severity.”

Over the past few years, many articles and news reports have heralded ketamine as a potential wonder drug for treating PTSD. A recent article published by Medscape discussed how a team of researchers at the Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai in New York City used ketamine to fight depressive symptoms in patients with PTSD and severe depression.

Is Ketamine Safe for PTSD?

There is no doubt that ketamine is a novel treatment for many PTSD sufferers. Since it is a relatively new medicinal intervention, there is some skepticism within the medical community regarding whether it is safe for human use. However, many of these doubts have been quelled over the years thanks to numerous studies and experiences that have proven its safety.

The most compelling evidence suggesting that ketamine infusion is safe in humans comes from a 2014 clinical study. This study managed to safely administer low doses of ketamine to treat neuropathic pain states in adults. Over the two-week monitoring period, the patients exhibited numerous benefits while experiencing only marginal or negligible side effects.

It should be noted that ketamine is not safe if taken recreationally. Since its inception, ketamine has gained a reputation as a party drug for its ability to induce dissociative states and euphoria. However, ketamine is not safe to use unless administered by a licensed physician. It is possible to overdose on ketamine, and the side effects of using high doses of ketamine can be fatal.

Ketamine: A PTSD Prevention Tool?

Interestingly, ketamine has found success as a tool for preventing the onset of PTSD. In one case, a research team gave a family of mice a low dose of ketamine before exposing them to electric shocks. Usually, mice exhibit symptoms of PTSD after being exposed to such a severe stressor. However, the mice that were given ketamine did not exhibit these symptoms at all.

Typically, traumatized mice freeze up when they are placed back in the cage in which they were shocked. In this case, the mice who were sedated with ketamine did not freeze when placed in the cage or froze for a significantly reduced duration. This led the research team to believe that ketamine may have value in both preventing and treating PTSD in humans.

Is Ketamine Right for You?

Ketamine may be an appropriate treatment option for you if you have treatment-resistant PTSD. In other words, you must first be diagnosed with PTSD and have sought the traditional frontline treatments for the condition before considering ketamine infusion therapy.

 We recommend speaking with your doctor about your PTSD symptoms and the appropriate therapies available to you. Usually, SSRIs or benzodiazepine pharmaceutical drugs, in conjunction with cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT) is the first method of treatment. However, if you do not respond well to this treatment option you should consider seeking ketamine therapy.

Using Ketamine for Bipolar Depression Medication

There are many different types of mental health disorders such as major depressive disorder, post-traumatic stress disorder, those with suicidal thoughts (suicidal ideation), obsessive-compulsive disorder, and bipolar disorder. Bipolar disorder sometimes referred to as bipolar depression or manic depression, is a mental condition marked by periods of severe depression punctuated by periods of elevated mood. In other words, bipolar disorder encompasses continuous swings being “high” and “low” moods. Although no cure is available, ketamine therapy has shown promise as an effective treatment.

Do you, or does someone you know, suffer from bipolar disorder? If so, you should know what options are available in terms of treatment and symptom alleviation. While the conventional treatment options, such as psychotherapy and antidepressant drugs, are commonly understood, little is known about the benefits of ketamine for treating bipolar.

In this article, we outline the myriad benefits and advantages of ketamine infusion therapy for treating bipolar disorder. In doing so, we will touch on the scientific research recently conducted on ketamine therapy and will provide suggestions for using medicinal ketamine safely and effectively.

Bipolar Disorder: What Is It?

Little is understood of bipolar disorder. However, the essential aspects of bipolar are that it is a psychiatric disorder in which the patient oscillates between intense periods of high and low moods known as mania and depression, respectively. There are two main types of bipolar: Type I and Type II disorder.

The risk of suicide among bipolar patients is greater than six percent over 20 years, and the chances of self-harm are several times higher than the general population. The available data indicates that those living with bipolar are far more likely to develop chronic anxiety issues and substance abuse problems as they get older.

Between one and three percent of the American population are clinically diagnosed as bipolar. Although the causes are not well understood, it is believed that bipolar is both genetically and environmentally determined. Risk factors for bipolar include childhood abuse, neglect, long-term stress, early childhood trauma, and a family history of psychiatric illness.

Conventional Bipolar Treatments

Many people who live with bipolar disorder suffer in silence without seeking treatment. This is largely because bipolar sufferers are unaware of the treatment available to them. However, more and more people living with bipolar are beginning to seek out the treatment they need. Currently, psychotherapy and mood stabilizers are the primary treatment options.

Psychotherapy for Bipolar

The core symptoms of bipolar can be managed with persistent long-term psychotherapy. Behavioral therapists can help those living with bipolar to recognize their environmental triggers, reduce the expression of negative emotions, and prevent remissions.

Most psychotherapy clinics assert the importance of talking with patients when they experience bouts of mania so that their behavior can be regulated. Maintaining confidantes and close relationships with therapists can help bipolar patients build the support network necessary for facilitating their recovery.

Medication for Bipolar

Medication for Bipolar

There are two main classes of drugs available to help bipolar patients: antipsychotics and mood stabilizers. The most commonly prescribed drug for controlling bipolar is lithium, which has been shown to reduce the incidence of suicide in bipolar patients significantly. Other drugs such as olanzapine have been shown to prevent relapses and support mood stability.

Bipolar and Society

Unfortunately, there is a social stigma surrounding bipolar disorder. This stigma has arisen largely due to public ignorance of the disorder. Those who live with bipolar disorder often cite social prejudice as a reason for not seeking help for managing their symptoms. However, public awareness of the disorder has increased in recent years.

Hollywood and stage depictions of the illness has also not done sufferers of bipolar any justice. Popular plays such as Death of a Salesman (1949) and films such as The Mosquito Coast (1986) and Mr. Jones (1993) depict bipolar sufferers in a disparaging way. These depictions have led bipolar sufferers to feel shameful and not seek treatment.

Ketamine and Bipolar Disorder

Many of those living with bipolar disorder are resistant to conventional treatment options. An article in MDedgereports that up to half of all bipolar patients remain symptomatic despite seeking regular treatment. This attests to the great difficulty in treating bipolar disorder by conventional means.

Ketamine, however, has provided a glimmer of hope for those suffering from bipolar disorder. A significant amount of research has been published in the last decade that indicates that ketamine therapy may be helpful for bipolar sufferers who do not respond positively to mainstream treatment.

A 2017 study from Spain found that ketamine infusion therapy provided relief for a severe treatment-resistant bipolar depression patient for four weeks without major side effects. Another research study from an Iowa-based scientific team found that ketamine therapy “demonstrated a statistically significant improvement over placebo” for those with bipolar depression.

Ketamine Infusion Therapy

Recently, ketamine infusion therapy has gained popularity as a treatment method for severe cases of bipolar disorder. Ketamine infusion therapy is the leading form of ketamine-based therapeutic treatment. Ketamine infusion therapy administers a controlled dose of intravenous ketamine under the supervision of a medical professional.

In most cases, patients require two to six infusions of ketamine to realize the full benefits of the therapy. Evidence has shown that ketamine infusion therapy can provide lasting results for those who are resistant to normal bipolar depression treatment. Consequently, ketamine therapy has become a popular alternative treatment for many in recent years.

Is Ketamine Therapy Right for Me?

If you are one of the many people living with bipolar disorder that is resistant to conventional treatment methods, you may benefit from ketamine infusion therapy. We recommend speaking with your doctor about whether ketamine infusion therapy is right for you. However, it is advised that you undergo ketamine treatment in conjunction with conventional psychotherapy.

It is important to note that certain drugs commonly prescribed to bipolar depression patients, such as benzodiazepines (i.e. Valium, Ativan, and Xanax) are known to interfere with ketamine. As such, they cannot be taken before or during your ketamine infusion treatment.

 If you take benzodiazepine drugs, let your doctor and your anesthesiologist know prior to receiving ketamine treatment. Taking contraindicated drugs with ketamine can result in serious negative side effects.

The Various Types of OCD and Proven Ketamine Infusion Treatment

Today, there are many different types of mental health issues that have been diagnosed, such as post-traumatic stress disorder, bipolar disorder, severe depression, major depressive disorder, mood disorders, those with suicidal thoughts, and obsessive-compulsive disorder. Obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD) is a mental disorder that affects millions of people around the world. Unlike other mental illnesses, OCD is a diverse condition that touches lives in vastly different ways. In fact, no two cases of OCD are the same—the obsessions and compulsions of an OCD patient vary from person to person.

Do you have OCD, or does a loved one suffer from OCD? Would you like to discover more about this common yet seldom-understood disorder? If so, you have come to the right place. In this article, our experts break down the various types of OCD and the various treatment options available to those living with OCD, including ketamine infusion therapy.

What Is OCD?

The Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders (DSM-5), the handbook for clinical psychology and psychiatry, defines obsessive-compulsive disorder as the “presence of obsessions, compulsions, or both.” However, the medical community has not reached a strong consensus as to what OCD entails—the definition, therefore, has had to remain vague.

The fact remains, though, that OCD is characterized by the persistence of obsessions and compulsions in the mind of the patient. These afflictions cause the patient to act involuntarily or to do things that are beyond their control, usually repetitively.

Obsessions

Obsessions are intrusive or unwelcome thoughts that persist over time in the mind of the patient. These thoughts recur despite attempts from the subject to repress them, block them, or ignore them. Those who live with obsessive-compulsive disorder often act compulsively to find relief from their obsessions that would otherwise occupy their mind ceaselessly.

Most OCD patients find that they cannot properly function or proceed with life unless they satisfy their obsessions. There is typically a strong sense of tension in the mind of OCD patients until they are able to silence the obsessions running through their mind.

Compulsions

Most OCD patients report having to perform compulsiv

Most OCD patients report having to perform compulsive tasks or rituals. These are known as compulsions, and they have little to do with one’s willpower or ability to fight the compulsion. Those living with OCD feel physically ill or severely irritated unless they can satisfy their compulsions to act in a certain way.

For example, OCD sufferers may feel strongly inclined to pull out their own hair, pick at their skin, bite their nails, or perform other body-related repetitive behaviors. Even if these actions are “unhealthy” or self-destructive, OCD patients must repetitively or ritualistically repeat their tasks or behaviors until their compulsive needs are met.

OCD in a Nutshell

Clearly, the specifics of OCD can be a bit dry. It doesn’t need to be this way, however. This is because OCD can be more aptly understood as a simple anxiety disorder. Those who suffer from OCD merely experience a strong bout of anxiety whenever their obsessions or compulsions occupy their mind.

Framing OCD in terms of an anxiety response can help those who do not have OCD empathize with, understand, and help those who live with OCD.

What Causes OCD?

A confluence of factors can lead to the development of OCD. In fact, there is little scientific consensus when it comes to the material basis of OCD. Rather, scientists and mental health experts that three broad categories of causes exist: genetic factors, environmental factors, and neurological factors.

Genetic Causes

Data has shown that there is a moderate genetic contribution to the development of OCD. For example, those with OCD are more likely than the general population to have a family member also diagnosed with OCD or an anxiety disorder. Also, twins tend to both exhibit OCD symptoms more than other groups.

Neurological Causes

There is some evidence to suggest that there are differences between the physical structure of the brain in those living with OCD versus those who are not. For example, some research points to the fact that the frontal cortex, a large portion in the front of the brain, is larger in those who have been diagnosed with OCD.

Environmental Causes

It has long been suggested that those who have experienced emotional, physical, or sexual abuse during their early childhood are more likely to develop OCD when they get older. Other types of OCD are prevalent among those who have experienced surgical complications.

Warning Signs of OCD Development

Are you at risk of developing OCD or do you suspect

Are you at risk of developing OCD or do you suspect you have been cultivating OCD-like symptoms? If so, you should be mindful of the most common OCD symptoms and warning signs. We suggest speaking with your doctor or clinical psychologist if you experience any two or more of the following signs:

  • A need for objects to be symmetrical
  • A need for objects and environments to be clean or sterilized
  • Repeated intrusive thoughts
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    Not being able to control behaviors
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    Not deriving any pleasure from compulsive or obsessive behaviors

Types of OCD

Now that we understand what OCD is, let us now discuss the various types of OCD that are most common in the general population.

Contamination

The contamination OCD subtype is characterized by feeling uncomfortable with feeling contaminated. Therefore, they have to wash, clean, and scrub themselves to produce a sense of cleanliness.

Hoarding

The hoarding OCD subtype is defined by the compulsion to keep old objects of limited or no value such as magazines, receipts, junk mail, paper, notes, and garbage.

Symmetry Obsessions

Symmetry obsessions are very common among those with OCD. This subtype is characterized by the need to order or arrange objects to make them symmetrical.

Invisible Compulsions

Obsessions without visible compulsions are purely mental obsessions the involve aggressive, religious, or hypersexual themes.

Harm Obsessions

Harm-based obsessions are characterized by intense beliefs related to one’s personal distress if they do not satisfy their obsessions. They feel like something bad will happen to them, or that they will be unsafe unless they fulfill their obsessive impulses.

Ketamine Infusion Therapy for OCD

Did you know that ketamine infusion therapy can be used to treat OCD? Since the early 2000s, a significant amount of scientific research has been undertaken that has shown ketamine to be a powerful treatment option for alleviating the pain, irritation, and severity of compulsions and obsessions.

 At present, there are dozens of clinics around the United States offering ketamine infusion treatment for OCD, depression, anxiety, and many other mood disorders and anxiety disorders. If you are resistant to conventional OCD treatment options, speak to your doctor about receiving off-label ketamine infusion therapy for OCD.

Proven Ketamine Treatment Plan for Anxiety

Ketamine has been long touted as one of the most effective and transformational antidepressant medications in the world. Since the emergence of ketamine infusion therapy in the early 2000s, thousands of people living with treatment-resistant depression have flocked to private ketamine treatment centers to seek the help they need. But did you know ketamine can treat anxiety too?

Do you want to find out how you can use ketamine to help alleviate anxiety symptoms? If so, you have come to the right place. In this article, our experts break down everything there is to know about ketamine therapy for treating anxiety and anxiety-related chronic illnesses. In the end, we suggest tips for determining whether ketamine is right for you.

Ketamine and Anxiety

A major 2018 research study published in a top scientific journal, Neuropsychopharmacology, that explored whether ketamine might be useful in treating social anxiety disorder (SAD). The results were promising. Of the 18 adults subjected to the experiment, half of their self-reported anxiety symptoms vanished after receiving treatment.

The study was a double-blind, randomized, placebo-controlled crossover trial—the highest standard of rigor in scientific experimentation. Studies of this kind rarely produce untrustworthy or misleading results. That gives us all the more reason to believe that ketamine infusions have the astounding potential to alleviate the symptoms of generalized or social anxiety.

Conventional Anxiety Medications

The substance typically referred to as ketamine, medically known as ketamine hydrochloride, is an anesthetic painkiller. This painkilling property sets it apart from most other anti-anxiety medications, such as Prozac or Valium. At present, there are two classes of drugs used to treat anxiety: selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors (SSRIs) and benzodiazepines.

SSRIs for Anxiety

Popular SSRIs include fluoxetine (Prozac), sertraline (Zoloft), paroxetine (Paxil), escitalopram (Lexapro), and citalopram (Celexa). These drugs are considered frontline antidepressants, although they are commonly used to treat anxiety disorders as well. As their mechanism of action, they increase the among of the neurotransmitter serotonin in the brain.

Benzodiazepines for Anxiety

By contrast, benzodiazepines are drugs used to treat more acute cases of anxiety and panic. They are fast-acting and provide strong instant relief. Benzodiazepines have sedating effects which can cause drowsiness. Their mechanism of action is enhancing the effects of GABA in the brain. Common benzodiazepines include Xanax, Klonopin, Valium, Ativan, and Prosom.

Ketamine: The Next Anxiety Medication?

Ketamine The Next Anxiety Medication

The leading treatment options for anxiety and panic disorders suffer from low efficacy rates. In other words, many who suffer from anxiety are not fully alleviated or not alleviated at all by the effects of benzodiazepines or SSRIs. This is where ketamine infusion therapy comes in.

Since arriving on the medical scene in the early 2000s, intravenous ketamine infusion therapy has gained popularity as a highly effective anti-anxiety treatment. Whereas the majority of those seeking conventional treatment report experiencing little to no relief from conventional anti-anxiety medication, ketamine infusion has success rates between 70 and 80 percent.

Ketamine for Instant Anxiety Relief

One of the key benefits of ketamine infusion therapy is its fast-acting quality. Whereas SSRIs can take months until they work as intended, ketamine infusion therapy provides immediate relief within minutes of administration. Most patients who have undergone ketamine infusion therapy only require one or two infusions to feel the full effects of the treatment.

Those who suffer from treatment-resistant major depressive disorder will do anything for relief. There is a real sense of urgency and necessity that depression patients experience. That is why ketamine therapy is so crucial. Administering ketamine as a last resort therapy can provide that much-needed relief that depression sufferers desperately need.

Is Ketamine Right for You?

A wide body of scientific evidence suggests that ketamine is effective for those who suffer from moderate to severe anxiety. However, it is recommended that other frontline treatment methods be explored before considering ketamine infusion therapy. At present, psychotherapy, SSRIs, and benzodiazepines are common treatments along with practicing a healthy lifestyle.

Ketamine may not be right for you if you take benzodiazepines currently. Since ketamine interferes with benzodiazepines, they cannot be taken at the same time. Ensure that your doctor and anesthesiologist is aware of your medical and prescription drug history before you receive ketamine infusion treatment.

Deciding to Receive Treatment

The decision to receive ketamine infusion therapy is a serious one. As such, it should be made in collaboration with your physician. If, however, you do decide to explore ketamine therapy for your treatment-resistant anxiety, you need to be aware of the side effects and potential hazards that are associated with the procedure.

Although ketamine is known to provide effective relief for anxiety, you must always exercise caution before, during, and after your ketamine treatment. An overview of the side effects of ketamine infusion therapy is summarized in the ‘results’ section of this leading 2014 research paper.

It is also advised that you bring a loved one along with you during the ketamine injection procedure. Not only are patients more comfortable in the presence of their loved ones, but they can also supervise you during your return home from the clinic.

Pick Your Clinic

Finding the right ketamine infusion clinic can be a daunting task. That is why we put together this list of the top ketamine treatment centers across the United States. For your convenience, we grouped our favorite clinics according to their geographical location. Skip ahead to wherever you happen to live to quickly find the best clinics near you.

American Midwest

The most reputable ketamine infusion clinics in the Midwest region of the United States are Michigan Progressive Health and the Midwest Ketamine Center. They are based out of Grand Rapids, Michigan, and Chicago, Illinois, respectively. The Midwest is one of the most underserved regions in the US when it comes to ketamine treatment centers.

American West

There are many ketamine infusion clinics in the American West. Among the most reputable treatment centers are the Ketamine Clinics of Los Angeles, Vitalitas Denver, Neuro-Luminance, Herro Medical Center, and the Phoenix Ketamine Wellness Center.

Eastern and South United States

 There are many trusted ketamine infusion clinics in the Eastern and Southern regions of the United States. Some of our favorite clinics in these regions include NY Ketamine Infusions, Boston MindCare, The Ketamine Institute in Pensacola, the Alabama Ketamine Clinics, and the Atlanta Center for Ketamine Therapy.

News in Inpatient Depression Treatment and Ketamine Research 2018

Many hospitals and psychiatric institutes around the world offer inpatient services for those struggling with major depression disorder (MDD) and other depression-related illnesses like bipolar disorder, mood disorders, and those with suicidal thoughts. Usually, inpatient care is the best way for long-term depression patients to receive the care they need.

Did you know that ketamine is now being used to help manage depression among some inpatients for depression? This powerful anesthetic drug is being used to help thousands of people tolerate their symptoms, carry on with their treatment, and facilitate their healing. In the last few years, ketamine has skyrocketed in popularity as a medicinal intervention in humans.

Are you currently living with depression or is someone you know diagnosed with depression? If so, you may be interested in learning about the many exciting new developments in inpatient treatments in the medical world. In this article, our experts discuss the latest news on inpatient depression treatment and scientific research on ketamine and ketamine therapy.

Depression and the Inpatient Experience

Inpatient care is a form of hospitalization in which patients require admission to a psychiatric institute or hospital because it would otherwise be unsafe to have the patient unsupervised. Normally, only those living with severe cases of depression and persistent suicidal ideation are admitted into inpatient care.

Those living with severe depression are usually admitted into inpatient care due to previous ambulatory care or through admission via emergency medicine departments. After the writing of an admission note, a patient is formally admitted into inpatient care. Inpatient care can last days or several weeks until they are deemed well enough for a discharge note.

Ketamine: What We Know

Ketamine is a powerful and fast-acting analgesic and anesthetic drug that has recently gained popularity as a treatment for major depression, generalized anxiety, post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), and other chronic pain-related illnesses. However, since it was first discovered in the early 1960s, it has not been approved by the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA).

Sometimes maligned by the name “horse tranquilizer,” ketamine is one of the most common anesthetics used in veterinary medicine for large mammals. Its popularity as a surgical anesthetic in animals has led to a scientific inquiry about its suitability in humans.

Consequently, a large body of research has been produced on ketamine and its efficacy as a pharmaceutical-grade medical intervention.

Ketamine: The Latest Research

Ketamine The Latest Research

Ketamine has been the subject of intense scrutiny in recent years. Since the early 2000s, ketamine infusion clinics have opened up across the United States. These mental health clinics offer off-label ketamine for treating anxiety, depression, and chronic pain. However, both the general public and the scientific community have historically understood little about ketamine.

In the last decade, public ignorance surrounding ketamine has begun to dwindle. This is due to a large mass of research having been published on the subject of pharmaceutical ketamine and a vast amount of anecdotal evidence compiled by ketamine infusion clinics.

Ketamine as an Antidepressant

A recent research paper published in Molecular Psychiatry in 2018 tested whether a sub-anesthetic dose of ketamine would yield antidepressant benefits. Their research paid specific attention to the molecular mechanism of action underlying the antidepressant properties of ketamine.

Their results were encouraging for ketamine advocates. The research team found that ketamine exerted “acute changes in synaptic plasticity, leading to a sustained strengthening of excitatory synapses, which are necessary for antidepressant behavioral actions.” This provides material evidence that ketamine alleviates symptoms of depression.

This research supports earlier work done by scientific teams exploring ketamine’s suitability as an antidepressant agent. Notably, a 2015 study led by Dr. David Feifel found that ketamine is effective as an antidepressant substance. However, he maintains that more research still needs to be done on ketamine become final conclusions can be drawn.

A recent review article in ScienceDaily also points to the fact that ketamine shows significant promise as an antidepressant. In particular, they cite a 2018 paper from the American Journal of Psychiatry (AJP) which defended the use of nasal spray ketamine for treating acute bouts of depression rapidly.

Ketamine and Inpatient Anxiety Research

Over the past year, ketamine has drawn significant media attention for its ability to reduce feelings of anxiety and panic. Specifically, an article in VICE discussed experimental applications of ketamine in the form of nasal spray, pills, and intravenous infusions for helping provide relief for those living with anxiety.

Of particular interest is ketamine’s ability to help alleviate social anxiety disorder (SAD) on top of regular depression-related symptoms for those undergoing inpatient care. At present, research is being undertaken as to whether mental health inpatients can safely use ketamine to treat multiple intersecting mental illnesses at once.

Interestingly, a New Zealand-based research team found that ketamine can reduce symptoms of treatment-resistant anxiety disorders. In other words, ketamine has the unique potential to provide rapid relief for those who would otherwise be unable to obtain treatment.

Ketamine and PTSD

Finally, ketamine is also being explored as a potential treatment option for those who are suffering from post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD). It is well understood that depression and PTSD often go hand in hand, especially among those who are seeking inpatient care. To be able to alleviate the symptoms of both conditions would provide significant relief for these patients.

In one study published in 2018, 12 dozen adults with PTSD were given three ketamine doses of ketamine over a three-week period. The patients experienced rapid anti-anxiety effects that lasted between three and seven days. These results indicate that ketamine may have value as a treatment of last resort in cases of acute depression or anxiety.

Inpatient Care and Ketamine?

All of the most recent searches on ketamine and ketamine therapies indicates that ketamine may have strategic value as a treatment for inpatient care. However, more research needs to be done on whether ketamine infusion therapy is suitable for the sensitive inpatient care environment.

 Overall, ketamine shows significant potential for use in clinical and inpatient care. It remains to be seen whether we can expect to see ketamine used in clinical and inpatient care settings in the future, although the recent research proves to be promising in this regard.

Mental Health Treatment Centers that Recommend Ketamine as a Treatment

Since the early 2000s, ketamine infusion therapy clinics have popped up in increasing numbers around the world. For thousands of people around the world suffering from major depression, bipolar disorder, chronic pain, and other serious illnesses, ketamine infusion clinics have provided much-needed relief.

Although ketamine therapy is still in its infancy, ketamine is rapidly rising in popularity among the medical community. This is because ketamine has shown tremendous promise as a fast-acting antidepressant treatment option for those who are resistant to conventional therapies.

Are you one of the millions of people around the world living with treatment-resistant depression, anxiety, post-traumatic stress disorder, or bipolar depression? If so, you might benefit from seeking help at a ketamine infusion therapy clinic. In this article, we will go over the benefits of ketamine therapy and how to find a clinic near you that recommends ketamine as a treatment.

Ketamine: An Introduction

Any prospective ketamine therapy recipient needs to first understand the details of ketamine. This way, the patient can decide whether ketamine therapy is right for their specific condition. Before making a decision, the various benefits and potential risk factors need to take into consideration.

Ketamine is an analgesic and anesthetic substance that is used, primarily, as a painkiller. Since its discovery in the 1960s, ketamine has caught the eye of the medical community for its ability to powerfully reduce pain-related symptoms within minutes of administration. It is no surprise, then, that ketamine is one of the most popular surgical anesthetics in veterinary medicine.

At present, ketamine is held back from mainstream adoption because it lacks formal approval from the United States Food and Drug Administration (FDA). Consequently, ketamine is generally not covered by private health insurance providers. However, public interest groups like the Ketamine Advocacy Network are actively working toward gaining FDA approval.

Is Ketamine Safe?

Numerous studies conducted over the last decade have shown that medical ketamine therapies are both safe and effective. A recent overview of ketamine therapy published by PsyPost discusses how ketamine treatment produces side effects that are common among conventional antidepressants, although with a much shorter duration.

Today, thousands of American citizens have taken to ketamine infusion clinics to seek treatments. Since they first started opening roughly a decade ago, there have been no reported incidences of ketamine-related deaths or serious illnesses as a result of treatment administration.

Is Ketamine Therapy Right for You?

Is Ketamine Therapy Right for You

Despite early studies and reports heralding the relative safety of ketamine, it is important to bear in mind that ketamine is still a medicinal substance in its early stages of adoption. As such, more research and clinical trials will need to be released before any final conclusions can be made regarding its side effects and potential harm.

Despite the fact that ketamine has only recently been adopted by the medical community, those in need of treatment should not shy away from inquiring about ketamine infusion therapy. If you have had unsuccessful experiences with conventional treatment for OCD, generalized anxiety, major depression, or PTSD, you should ask your doctor about ketamine therapy.

Ketamine should never be used outside of a clinical context. If you decide to seek ketamine treatment, ensure that the clinic is licensed and staffed by medical doctors or anesthesiologists. Also, make sure you disclose your medical history and any prescription medication you are taking before receiving treatment.

Ketamine Treatment Centers in the US

One of the first major steps in seeking ketamine infusion therapy is locating a reputable clinic. Many mental health clinics across the United States do not currently offer ketamine infusion services. However, a growing number of clinics in the American West and the Southeast regions are beginning to offer ketamine infusion therapies.

A great resource for locating ketamine treatment centers in the United States is the Ketamine Advocacy Network’s directory of US providers. However, their directory is not an exhaustive list as more and more clinics are opening up every year. To help you quickly navigate the various ketamine infusion clinics listed in the directory, we have organized them below.

Ketamine Clinics of Los Angeles

Ketamine Clinics of Los Angeles

If you live in the Greater Los Angeles area, the Ketamine Clinics of Los Angeles should be your first stop for ketamine therapy services. Their team of doctors and accredited anesthesiologists have satisfied countless patients over the years, which has rightfully earned them a reputation as one of the West Coast’s finest ketamine therapy clinics.

Actify Neurotherapies

Actify Neurotherapies does not brand itself as a ketamine therapy clinic, but rather as a mental health clinic that recommends ketamine as a treatment option. The experts at Actify hold themselves to high professional standards and are careful to follow protocols backed by substantive peer-reviewed evidence. They are based in Princeton, New Jersey.

LoneStar Infusion PLLC

LoneStar Infusion PLLC is one of the finest mental health clinics in the American South. Based in Houston, Texas, this clinic offers a range of mental health services including ketamine infusions for treating OCD, PTSD, depression, and anxiety. Led by Dr. Allison Wells, M.D., their team of doctors has performed hundreds of infusions since 2015.

Boston MindCare

Serving the New England region of the US, Boston MindCare is among the country’s most reputable mental health clinics offering ketamine infusion therapy. While they offer a host of services tailored to those recovering from mental illness, they specialize in ketamine infusion therapy and alternative treatments for those who need fast-acting relief.

Seattle Ketamine Clinic

The Seattle Ketamine Clinic is the Pacific Northwest’s home for ketamine infusion therapy. Their team of physicians administer off-label ketamine for a period of two weeks across six infusion sessions. Along the way, they regularly check in with patients and walk them through their recovery process at all stages of the therapy.

Atlanta Center for Ketamine Therapy

The Atlanta Center for Ketamine Therapy is the name of the private practice of Dr. Andro Giorgadze, M.D., who has been offering board-certified therapies for 15 years. Dr. Giorgadze is one of the United States’ most renowned clinical investigators in ketamine research and, fortunately, offers highly affordable rates for his ketamine infusion services.

How to Perform a Sleep Disorder Test and How Ketamine Can Help

Millions of Americans suffer from common sleep disorders, although many are completely unaware of the fact they have a problem at all. From night terrors and sleep deprivation to insomnia and obstructive sleep apnea, sleep disorders come in a variety of forms that affect people differently. In this article, we discuss how to tell if you have a sleep disorder and whether medicinal ketamine can help provide relief.

Sleep Disorders 101

Otherwise known as “somnipathy,” sleep disorders are a type of medical disorder characterized by a persistent “disorder” of one’s sleep patterns. Broadly, sleep disorders are classified into the following categories:

  • Parasomnias
  • Circadian rhythm sleep disorders
  • Dyssomnias
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    Sleep disturbances

Each of the above categories of sleep disorders encompasses their own unique characteristics. Medically, they can be tested and diagnosed using polysomnography and actigraphy technology which monitor sleep cycles.

Dyssomnias

These sleep disorders are characterized by great difficulty in getting to sleep, staying asleep, or of excessive fatigue and sleepiness. In other words, they are defined by their interference in one’s ability to get a sufficient amount of sleep or adequate quality of sleep. Typically, dyssomnia sufferers will not feel restful in the morning or will feel wakeful during regular sleeping hours.

Parasomnias

Parasomnias are a different categorization of sleep disorder defined by abnormal movements, behaviors, perceptions, or dreams that occur during sleep or while falling asleep. Parasomnia-induced states are dissociative and typically occur between wakefulness and rapid eye movement (REM) sleep cycles.

Circadian Rhythm Sleep Disorders

Circadian rhythm sleep disorders (CRSD) are a category of sleep disorders characterized by their interruption of the body’s regular sleep timing. Therefore, those who suffer from CRSD cannot easily fall asleep when they should and are often wakeful and alert while attempting to sleep. Those with CRSD do not have a regular and well-maintained “body clock.”

Sleep Disturbances

Sleep disturbances are a broad umbrella term to describe all other forms of chronic sleep issues. Persistent nightmares, sleep paralysis, restless leg syndrome, sleepwalking, and sleep-related anxiety are all forms of sleep disturbances that do not fall neatly under any other category.

Sleep Disorders: Symptoms and Warning Signs

Since sleep disorders come in a wide variety of different forms, they have a diverse array of symptoms and warning signs. For some, this can make diagnosis a challenge. However, there are general indicators that a sleep disorder may be at hand. Here are some of the most common signs that you may be suffering from a sleep disorder:

  • Frequent yawning throughout the day
  • A constant desire to nap
  • Regularly waking up tired
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    An inability to sleep
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    An inability to stay asleep at night
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    Erratic sleep schedule
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    Requiring substances to fall asleep

Online Quizzes for Sleep Disorders

Online Quizzes for Sleep Disorders

To find out if you suffer from common sleep disorders, you may want to take a quick online test. Although there are several types of tests available, the Clayton Sleep Institute offers one of the most reputable and well-designed self-assessments for sleep disorders. You can find Clayton Sleep Institute Adult Sleep Quiz on their website.

Alternatively, you could take the National Sleep Foundation Sleepiness Test if you want to test your general sleepiness levels. Extreme fatigue and excessive sleepiness is a strong indicator of sleep disorders such as narcolepsy. If you are rated as “very sleepy,” you should consider speaking to your doctor about sleep disorders.

For more specific online testing, you can try taking any of the Columbus Sleep Consultant sleep disorder quizzes. They have a host of online tests for a variety of sleep disorders from sleep apnea to insomnia, narcolepsy, and restless leg syndrome.

Ultimately, the most accurate way of determining whether you have a sleep disorder is to visit your local sleep clinic. Sleep clinics are staffed by doctors and sleep specialists who have the equipment necessary for monitoring your sleep. Sleep clinics are often covered by private insurance providers and Medicare.

Ketamine for Sleep Disorders

In recent years, ketamine has become a popular medicinal treatment for major depression, anxiety, post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) and chronic pain-related illnesses. This is especially true of patients who are resistant to conventional treatment methods such as psychotherapy and selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors (SSRIs).

Although ketamine currently lacks formal US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) approval, it has gained popularity as an off-label treatment for sleep disorders as well. This is because psychological ailments and pain-related illnesses are strongly associated with sleep disorders.

What Is Ketamine?

Before seeking ketamine therapy for sleep disorders, it is important that you first familiarize yourself with what ketamine is. Ketamine is a powerful anesthetic and analgesic drug. In other words, it is a drug primarily used to treat pain. Since the 1970s, ketamine has been used as an anesthetic in veterinary medicine, which has caused it to be derided as a “horse tranquilizer.”

In reality, ketamine is far more than a horse tranquilizer. In fact, it is a potent medicine that is used to treat both humans and a variety of animals during surgery. And, unlike other popular painkillers and anesthetics, the side effects are few, especially when compared to morphine or suboxone.

Is Ketamine Safe?

Over the past decade, a wide body of scientific research has pointed to the fact that medicinal ketamine is safe for treating common sleep disorders. Notably, a 2014 study found that ketamine was safe and effective for treating both depression and sleep disturbances since it was able to induce slow wave activity during sleep.

Is Ketamine Right for You?

Unfortunately, depression and anxiety are a common thread among those who suffer from sleep disorders. The common prescriptions used to treat mental illnesses are often ineffective, which leads patients toward alternate forms of therapy, such as ketamine infusion therapy.

 If you are curious about whether ketamine is right for you, speak to your doctor about ketamine infusion therapy. There are dozens of clinics across the United States and around the world that offer supervised ketamine infusions to help alleviate the psychological symptoms of sleep disorders and other mental illnesses.