Ketamine Infusion Therapy: A Fast Anti-Depressant Treatment

Ketamine infusion therapy offers a budding new treatment possibility for people with severe depression who need quick results. Traditional anti-depressants can be very effective as a long-term treatment strategy. However, they can take weeks to kick in. In contrast, ketamine infusion therapy begins working almost right away. When you’re struggling with suicidal thoughts or debilitating depression, faster relief can be life-saving.

Traditional anti-depressants, such as SSRIs, can take weeks to provide symptom relief. That is because the drug has to build up to a certain level in the body before it really begins to take effect. Moreover, it takes awhile to get the right dosage, so you might find that months have passed before you are able to see the results that you want with these kinds of drugs. This isn’t to say that they are bad; they can be very helpful for many people. However, they are sometimes slow.

Unfortunately, depression doesn’t always allow for such slow treatment. Depression can be completely immobilizing. You know that you need to get up and get going, take care of the house, be productive at your job. If you don’t, then you face serious repercussions (financial, in relationships) that can be devastating. This only adds to the stress that can exacerbate depression. Nevertheless, you can’t always just get up and get moving. Depression limits you. What you may need is something that helps relieve the depression quickly.

Ketamine infusion therapy might be that answer. It works differently in the body than traditional anti-depressants. Instead of requiring a build-up to be effective, it actually becomes effective as it leaves the body. We don’t know yet why this is. However, we do know that it works, and it works quickly. Ketamine, when given through an IV, and often within hours you feel symptom relief. Some research indicates that it can begin working in as quickly as 40 minutes. The value of this cannot be underestimated. When you are in immediate crisis, you need that relief.

Of course, ketamine infusion therapy alone won’t “fix” depression. Depression treatment often requires looking at underlying causes and issues, including past trauma and current stressors. That’s why medication is often combined with psychotherapy for the best results in treating depression. However, you can’t begin to work on your issues if your mind is ruminating in the worst throes of depression. Depression medication provides the mental relief that you need to be able to move forward with additional forms of treatment. They work hand-in-hand. With ketamine, you see relief happen more rapidly, and therefore you can quickly begin adjunct treatments so that you can see full recovery.

Unfortunately, ketamine treatment isn’t widely available, yet. Ketamine has a stigmatized history as a popular club drug. It’s true that when you use it in high doses, it can cause hallucinations and other serious drug side effects. However, more recent research has shown that in lower doses, ketamine can help people with everything from acute pain to asthma attacks. Plus, of course, it can help with depression. Therefore, researchers are working hard to help doctors figure out correct dosages. Moreover, they’re working through clinical studies to help streamline the approval process for the drug to go through the FDA so that psychiatrists can begin prescribing it as an anti-depressant.