Treatment-resistant depression can be devastating. After trying an endless array of antidepressants, many patients seek an alternative to traditional depression treatments in hopes that something will finally work and give them the relief they need. That’s why ketamine treatment for depression is gaining momentum in New York City — because it’s showing great promise as a depression treatment that finally gets patients off the hamster wheel of trying treatment after treatment without results.
If you’re interested in trying ketamine treatment for depression in NYC, keep reading. Ketamine may be the thing you’ve been looking for to finally find relief from your depression symptoms.
What is ketamine?
Ketamine is an anesthetic that was first used on the battlefield during the Vietnam War. It was given to soldiers to anesthetize them for emergency surgery. Unlike other anesthetics, ketamine didn’t slow soldiers’ heart rate or breathing, making it a perfect anesthetic for chaotic battlefield operations.
Instead of putting soldiers completely to sleep, ketamine produces an “out of body” effect that is referred to as “dissociative.” Soldiers described their experiences with ketamine anesthesia as feeling like they were floating outside of their bodies and away from any pain, in a euphoric, dreamlike state. Soldiers reported distortions of light, color, and sound while under the influence of ketamine.
As time went on, it was discovered that ketamine is also a powerful treatment for treatment-resistant depression. At significantly lower doses than those used on the battlefield, ketamine has been shown to decrease depression symptoms almost immediately and lead to long-term relief.
Ketamine treats depression in NYC by targeting receptors in the brain
The way that ketamine works in the brain isn’t well understood, but scientists believe that ketamine works in a number of ways in the brain to relieve depression symptoms.
It has been shown that ketamine binds to NMDA receptors in the brain, giving neurons an increased ability to communicate with each other. This then causes an increase in new neural pathways, which relieves symptoms of depression by allowing patients to build new positive behaviors and habits along these new pathways. The process of building new pathways can begin as quickly as 24 hours after the first ketamine treatment.
Also, ketamine affects the levels of glutamate in the brain. Mood-controlling neurons in the brain use glutamate to communicate with each other. Very often, glutamate receptors in the brains of people with depression do not function as they should. With ketamine treatment, their brains develop new glutamate receptors that improve the brain’s use of glutamate, which improves mood.
There is also scientific research that shows ketamine also increases the levels of serotonin in the brain.
What takes place during a ketamine treatment for depression?
For patients struggling with depression in NYC who are looking into ketamine treatment as a possible solution, one of the first things they ask is “What does a ketamine treatment for depression feel like?”
In our office in New York City, your ketamine treatment for depression is done in our private, cozy ketamine treatment suite. You won’t share this suite with anyone else, so you can just relax and focus on yourself during treatment.
The suite itself includes low light, soft music, and a zero-gravity recliner where you relax while undergoing your treatment. Our ketamine suite is designed to mimic a spa-like experience, providing the ultimate relaxation experience for our patients.
Once you’re settled into the oversized recliner, Dr. Jeff DItzell will come and inject you with a small, therapeutic dose of ketamine. This dose is far, far lower than the dosage used to anesthetize someone and also far smaller than people use when they abuse ketamine to get high.
You’ll sit in our ketamine treatment room in our office in NYC, quietly relaxing, for about 45 minutes. You can drive yourself home after your treatment, as there are no lingering dissociative effects.
What does ketamine treatment for depression feel like?
Many people are hesitant to try ketamine for depression in NYC because they’re afraid they’ll feel loopy, high, or drunk. Fortunately, ketamine treatment for depression is delivered at such a low dose that there are no hallucinogenic effects.
Most patients report a sense of calm relaxation, including lessening of their depression symptoms, right away. Immediate, dramatic relief of depression, even for persistent cases of treatment-resistant depression, is ketamine’s claim to fame. This is why so many New Yorkers choose ketamine as a treatment for their depression. We are a city of people who simply do not like to wait.
For other patients, the effects of ketamine treatment take 24 hours to kick in. Compared to the many weeks it can take for prescription antidepressants to work, this is a game-changer for depression sufferers. Getting to enjoy the relief of depression symptoms without waiting for weeks is an enormous selling point for ketamine.
You may only need a few treatments
Remembering to take a daily antidepressant pill is inconvenient. What if you miss a dose, or worse, forgot you took one and then take a second dose by mistake? What if you go off on vacation and leave your meds on the bathroom counter? As if depression itself wasn’t inconvenient enough, taking daily pills makes the entire situation more complicated.
With ketamine treatment for depression, you only need to come into our office in NYC a few times a year to receive your treatments. Though every patient is different, typically, we schedule patients to visit us for a series of six ketamine treatments in their first three weeks to achieve and maintain a positive level of relief. After that, most patients come in for a booster treatment every six months to maintain their results.
Looking for ketamine treatment for depression in NYC?
Dr. Jeff Ditzell’s psychiatry practice in New York City helps patients throughout NYC treat their depression with safe ketamine treatments, psychotherapy, medication, and more. Call to schedule your consult today.