Exploring the Power of Ketamine-Assisted Therapy for Trauma
Treating Trauma with Ketamine Therapy, a medication primarily known for its use in anesthesia, has emerged as a promising tool in mental health. Recent studies have explored the potential of Ketamine-Assisted Therapy in unlocking healing pathways for individuals suffering from trauma[^1^][^2^]. Though traditional therapies have been helpful to many, and remain to be a viable resource and treatment, ketamine therapy is proving its efficacy, safety and reliability as a treatment support for PTSD, anxiety, depression and other mental health challenges.
How Providers are Treating Trauma with Ketamine Therapy
After clients receive medical clearance and prescription for Ketamine Lozenges, the client will self-administer the Ketamine in a safe and comfortable space in their home. It acts a a dissociative agent, allowing patients to explore traumatic memories without the typical emotional response. This creates a therapeutic window for addressing and processing trauma. Research has shown that repeated Ketamine significantly reduce chronic PTSD symptoms[^3^].
Impact of Ketamine on the Brain
Ketamine’s impact on the brain is multifaceted. It affects various neurotransmitters, including glutamate, leading to altered neural connectivity. This can result in a temporary dissociative state, providing a unique opportunity for therapeutic intervention. The brain’s reaction to Ketamine is believed to facilitate the rewiring of neural pathways, aiding in the healing of trauma-related disorders.
A recent study conducted by researchers at Penn Medicine has provided insights into how Ketamine acts as a “switch” in the brain[^4^]:
- Targeting Specific Neurons: Ketamine temporarily silences a set of neurons called “GABAergic interneurons” in the brain region known as the “habenula.”
- Increasing Serotonin Levels: The silencing effect leads to a rapid increase in serotonin levels, contributing to Ketamine’s antidepressant effects.
- Switching Off Negative Signals: The habenula is linked to negative emotions and stress. Ketamine’s action on the GABAergic interneurons effectively “switches off” these negative signals.
- Potential for Targeted Treatments: Understanding this mechanism may pave the way for more targeted and effective treatments for mental health disorders, including depression. This discovery adds to the growing body of knowledge about the neurological effects of Ketamine and its potential therapeutic applications
What Clients Can Expect during Trauma Treatment with Ketamine Assisted Therapy
Clients undergoing Ketamine treatment can expect a series of sessions, often beginning with a consultation to assess suitability. The treatment includes:
- Medical Clearance: Through Journey Clinical physician
- Treatment Sessions: Administering Ketamine under professional supervision.
- Preparation: Understanding the process and setting intentions.
- Integration: Reflecting on the experience and integrating insights into daily life.
Our process at Mind by Design provides a detailed overview of what to expect.