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Ketamine Assisted Therapy: A Unique Approach to Mental Health

“I am not good enough”

“No one will love me”

“I always fail at everything I do”

“I’m not a good person”

Sometimes these negative thoughts can dominate our brain and it feels like there is no way to quiet these thoughts, or better yet, transform them into something empowering.

The World Health Organization (WHO) has named depression as the leading cause of disability in the world. Depression rates have increased by 30% since March 2020. This has led to more adults dying from suicide as of October 2020, than from COVID-19 in many parts of the world. For example, San Francisco has had 3x more deaths from suicide alone than from COVID-19. As we slowly move out of one pandemic, we are silently moving into a mental health pandemic.

If you’ve lived with depression or suicidal thoughts, you’ve probably tried several treatments and may be resistant to the effects of antidepressants or other Selective Serotonin Reuptake Inhibitor (SSRI) medications. You start to believe that nothing will work to get out of the depression you are in. Your mood and your thoughts are affected, and depression may leave you feeling incomplete in your relationships, your career, and your physical healthyour whole life. And with therapy, what works for some doesn’t work for others. It’s about trial-and-error and finding both a therapist and approach that works for you.

If depression has been impacting you and preventing you from genuinely connecting with yourself and loved ones, Ketamine Assisted Psychotherapy (KAP) may be the healing approach to traditional psychotherapy that can help you feel better. Ketamine helps to clear up the depression fog. With anything new, this nontraditional approach to healing can feel scary. According to Shakti Therapy & Healing Services, a holistic group practice in Los Angeles, CA, with KAP you have the support of a medical team throughout your journey. This team usually includes a medical doctor and a psychotherapist. The psychotherapist supports the medicine work with intensive integration work. This combination accelerates the growth of neuroplasticity and the disruption of limiting beliefs, making it effective at treating mental health symptoms.

Neuroplasticity (n): is the physiological changes that occur in the brain as a

direct result of interactions within the environment. These adaptations form new

neural connections which allow us to adapt, master new skills, store information,

and most importantly, recover from trauma and/or painful memories.

Researchers at Stanford found that people with depression who have tried several antidepressants, or talk therapy alone and had little to no improvement were seeing significant improvements on Ketamine. The improvement in mood could be seen almost immediately after the ketamine journey. According to researcher Jennifer Dore, “patients who received ketamine saw clinically significant improvement in depression and anxiety, particularly so for people who came in with more severe symptoms like suicidality and a history of psychiatric hospitalizations.” The medicine has helped many people alleviate their suffering from mental health conditions such as obsessive compulsive disorder, personality disorders, substance use, psychological reactions to physical illnesses, and even relationship challenges. Your brain has the amazing capacity to create new cells in order to heal, grow and form new connections. This was something that science previously thought was not possible. What this means for you is that years of depression can change.

Ketamine is a safe and widely used medicine in pain and trauma settings. It was previously known as a “dissociative anesthetic” since it tended to produce a disconnection from the external and internal world; meaning it disconnects you from your environment, the way you feel, and what your body is experiencing. This disconnection shifts your consciousness by increasing your awareness, seeing life through a different lens, freeing you from the worries and anxieties of the default mode network in your ordinary mind-states, reducing pain and distress.

Ketamine is used to disrupt the ego and the limiting beliefs. That’s the part of you that says:

“I am not good enough”

“No one will love me”

“I always fail at everything I do”

“I’m not a good person”

All of these limiting beliefs are the work of the ego and can cause, and exasperate symptoms of depression and anxiety. The benefits of ketamine is that it brings about these shifts through a psychedelic experience that expands your consciousness and deepens your spiritual connection with yourself. The immediate integration that follows the medicine allows you to anchor these new influences into your life.

Life is a gift. Ketamine offers the opportunity to enjoy this gift by healing from

mental health symptoms. You can experience a life filled with a renewed sense of

connection with yourself and others, joy, purpose, and love.

KAP is ideal in treating Depression, Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD), Anxiety, unresolved trauma or experiences from childhood, overcoming the challenges after a major illness, grief and loss, and life transitions. There are very few side effects associated with KAP. The side effects are usually limited for a timespan after the session and can include mild nausea, drowsiness, dizziness, and/or derealization.

The medicine has been shown to enhance healing through the NDMA receptors in the brain, which ignites activity of the neurotransmitter glutamate. The consequence of this interaction is the amplification of positive mood and hope, decrease in anxiety and fear, and decrease in cravings related to food or substance use addictions.

Ketamine treatment can be administered through a number of different routes. The two most common methods include, intramuscular injections (IM) and lozenges. These methods allow you to have a dissociative experience while being supported by a healthcare professional team. What that means is there is a disconnection from your mind and body, allowing you to see yourself differently. You see your true self, view the world differently, and feel more connected to yourself and others. This shift helps clear the fog of depression and invites more happiness and joy in your life. Emotions start to come up and you are able to reconsolidate memories and experiences in a less painful or traumatizing way.

Ketamine is a powerful tool and an alternative to the current mental health treatments. This medicine allows you to tap into your inner healing intelligence. Integration therapy is an essential part to creating lasting changes in your life. Integration builds on the happiness you experienced in your ketamine journey and integrates it into your life. It takes the insights and lessons from your journey and anchors them in your life.

To learn more about Ketamine Treatment and how we can help you unlock the door that is holding you back from experiencing happiness, and freedom from depression, click the link below to schedule a free consultation today.

So while many of you may have been taught “say no to drugs,” it’s okay to say YES to asking for help and trying new, clinically researched, and proven treatments to allow yourself the mental peace you deserve. Remember, life is happening for you!

Ektha Aggarwal is a licensed South Asian Therapist and CEO of Shakti Therapy and Healing Services in Los Angeles, CA. Ektha specializes in working with South Asians (Indian & Desi) and people of color to break the stigma around mental health and instill the concept of immigrant resilience. If you are ready to feel empowered, effortlessly achieve your goals, and feel more happiness in your life, schedule a complimentary consultation now.


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