If you have depression, it can be difficult to find treatments that restore your quality of life and help you feel like yourself. Often, medications and other treatments can be ineffective, which can lead to further frustration.
For patients who have depression that is resistant to treatment, ketamine infusions may provide an alternative solution that can help restore your quality of life. At Ahwatukee Ketamine Clinic and Drip Lounge in Phoenix, AZ, we use ketamine to treat depression in many of our patients.
What Is Depression and How Is It Diagnosed?
Depression is more than simply feeling down for a few days. This condition is considered a serious mood disorder that can disrupt day-to-day life and change your thoughts, habits, and routines such as sleeping, eating, and going to work.
Individuals with a depressive disorder may experience persistent feelings of emptiness, heaviness, or worthlessness. They may display irritability, experience higher levels of fatigue, have difficulty concentrating, and have difficulty performing simple, everyday tasks.
When depression starts interfering with your daily life, causing you to stop being interested in things that generally bring you joy, or you start performing poorly at work, it is time to seek help. Depression is typically diagnosed by a doctor who will help to rule out other conditions that may have some of the same symptoms as depression.
Understanding Ketamine Therapy and How It Can Help With Depression
Ketamine is a medication that has been widely used for many years to induce and maintain anesthesia during surgical operations. However, its uses have been expanded to include treatments for major depressive disorder and other mental health and chronic pain conditions.
Most antidepressants help by increasing levels of serotonin or norepinephrine in the brain. This can take several weeks to begin to take effect and doesn’t always resolve the problem. Ketamine works by modulating glutamate transmission. When this happens, it can trigger a chain of events that causes pathways of communication within the brain to grow and regenerate. This can lead to both fast-acting and long-lasting relief of depression.
What Types of Depression Can Ketamine Treat?
Many different types of depression can affect an individual’s daily life. In addition to offering ketamine for major depressive disorder, we can also treat:
- Persistent Depressive Disorder
- Postpartum Depression
- Seasonal Affective Disorder
- Bipolar Disorder
How Many Ketamine Treatments Will You Need? Several Factors to Consider
The Severity and Duration of Your Condition
The severity of your depression along with how long you have been suffering from this condition can affect the number of ketamine treatments that will be beneficial. Often, those who have more severe or long-lasting depression will require more sessions to receive the full benefits of ketamine therapy.
The Treatment Protocol Chosen By Your Doctor
Your doctor may choose a different depression treatment protocol based on the symptoms that you are experiencing and other factors. Some patients may need a round of treatments followed by maintenance treatments for the greatest efficacy.
Individual Variability in Treatment Response
When it comes to depression relief with ketamine, it is important to remember that everyone responds differently to this treatment. You will be working closely with your provider to ensure that you have the right treatment plan that will be adjusted as needed with close monitoring of your symptoms.
What to Expect From Ketamine Therapy for Depression
Preparation For Your Treatment
Before your depression treatment, you should have a detailed consultation to evaluate your health, discuss your medical history, and determine whether there are any contraindications for ketamine treatment in your situation. Once you have set up a ketamine treatment plan with your provider, you will want to arrange transportation after your treatment, as you will be unable to drive.
During Your Treatment
Ketamine therapy for depression is administered with an IV. The drip can take up to an hour to finish, so you will be placed in a comfortable position as the medication is administered. During the process, you will be continuously monitored for your safety. You may experience changes to your perceptions such as seeing vivid colors, feelings of floating, or sensations of disconnect.
Short-Term Effects of Ketamine
Everyone has a different experience after receiving ketamine for depression. You may feel dizzy, euphoric, or even nauseated. You may also feel a rapid antidepressant effect.
Long-Term Effects of Ketamine
Many of these effects fade quickly, but the long-term effects of ketamine therapy can be transformative for some. These effects can include a reduction in depressive symptoms, improved mood, reduced irritability, a change in perspective toward life, and an overall improved quality of life.
What Are the Benefits of Ketamine Treatments?
One of the benefits of ketamine treatment is the rapidity of results for many of our patients. While other treatments can take many days to have an effect, ketamine treatments can often provide relief within a day or even hours.
Ketamine has also shown promise in the brain’s ability to change and adapt over time. Through the growth of neurons, it can help to reverse harmful changes in the brain and make it more resilient to stress. Finally, ketamine can provide combination treatments for those who are suffering from other mental health disorders, such as PTSD or anxiety, alongside their depression.
Learn More About Ketamine Therapy for Depression in Phoenix, AZ
If you are experiencing treatment-resistant depression, we would be happy to meet with you and discuss your case at Ahwatukee Ketamine Clinic and Drip Lounge. Contact us for services in Phoenix, AZ, by filling out an online form or by calling (480) 847-5550.