Ketamine for Depression​ A Breakthrough Treatment

Some doctors are calling it the biggest breakthrough in depression treatment in 50 years.

At Flow Integrative® we are proud to offer the latest in mental health treatment options. This includes Ketamine infusion therapy for the treatment of clinical depression using the highest levels of safety standards and patient care.

With traditional depression treatments like antidepressants, it can sometimes take weeks or even months before relief from symptoms is experienced. Ketamine is an inspiring treatment option because in some cases it can provide relief from symptoms within days or even hours.

Ketamine for depression treatment offers fast and efficient relief from the symptoms of clinical depression, with up to 75% of patients reporting a positive response to just a single ketamine infusion.

What is Depression?

Depression is a mood disorder and mental health condition that affects millions of Americans each year. Depression can cause intense sadness, which then can lead to someone stepping away from their responsibilities in favor of isolation from both their loved ones and their social life. It also deeply affects how a person thinks or behaves, as well as brings on a bevy of emotional or physical problems like persistent anxiety. With depression, it can become difficult to complete everyday tasks, and in some cases, you may have suicidal thoughts.

Depression is no one’s fault, and because of this, there is no shame in going through it. Suffering from depression is not a sign of weakness, and oftentimes will require long-term treatment rather short-term fixes. Fortunately, many sufferers of depression respond positively to various treatment options offered by modern healthcare.

Some sufferers may only experience a depressive episode once in life, but for most, depression will linger and bring on many episodes over the course of one’s life. During these depressive episodes, symptoms can look like:
  • Persistent feelings of hopelessness or emptiness
  • Unexplained physical aches, such as headaches or backaches
  • Feelings of sadness
  • Frequent bouts of tearfulness
  • Mood swings
  • Irritability
  • Angry outbursts
  • Fatigue and lack of energy
  • Trouble sleeping
  • Changes in appetite (either weight loss or weight gain)
  • Slowed thinking and body movements
  • Fixation on self-blame
  • Suicidal thoughts or actions
For those suffering from depression, symptoms can create problems that affect every facet of one’s life, such as work, school, and relationships. Some people may feel these symptoms and not recognize what they’re dealing with, which can be harmful to one’s overall mental health. Understanding is the first step to getting better. Continue reading to learn more about this condition and how it can affect you or a loved one, as well as discover some possible solutions as to how to tackle it one day at a time.

Depression is very complex and can be caused by a number of different factors. In fact, depression is typically the result of a mix of factors both internal and external, such as differences in biology, differences in brain chemistry, hormonal changes, and family history. Continue reading to learn more about these factors and how they contribute to the way you are feeling. 

Differences in Biology

Research shows that those suffering from depression may have physical changes within the brain, like brain shrinkage, inflammation, oxygen restriction, and structural/connective changes. While the exact significance of these differences is still not known, this may aid research in the future.

Differences in Brain Chemistry

Neurotransmitters are chemical substances in the brain, oftentimes described as the human body’s chemical messengers. Research is still in progress but indicates that changes to the function and result of the neurotransmitters in the brain, as well as how they connect with neural circuits, may contribute to both the onset of depression and additionally how it is treated.

Hormonal Changes

Depression can be caused by hormonal changes in the body that come around during/after pregnancy, menopause, thyroid issues, or other underlying conditions that have yet to be discovered. Hormone changes may come about during pregnancy (or after delivery) or from thyroid problems, menopause, or other conditions yet undiscovered.

Family History

One is more likely to develop depression or experience depressive episodes if a family member also suffers from the disorder. Research shows that while we have yet to discover the why’s and how’s, there does seem to be a correlation between depression and family history. Depression is much more prevalent in those whose blood relatives also suffer from this disorder. Research into what genes are involved is still ongoing.

Depression is not something that goes away if ignored or untreated, and will likely only get worse if not addressed early on. It can quickly become a great hindrance to one’s emotional and mental health. Examples of this include: 
  • Obesity
  • Diabetes
  • Heart disease
  • Physical illness
  • Pain or chronic aches
  • Alcohol or substance abuse
  • Anxiety disorders
  • Panic disorders
  • Social phobia
  • Work or school problems
  • Relationship troubles with loved ones
  • Social isolation and withdrawal
  • Suicidal ideations or attempts
  • Self-harm
Regrettably, there is no surefire way to avoid a person from developing this condition or becoming depressed. That said, a few steps you can take to lower the risk consist of:
  • Control Stress: Minimizing stress can strengthen your resilience and boost your self-respect at the same time.
  • Construct a Support Net: Your close family and friends may be tremendous sources of comfort to you in your times of need.
  • Get Therapy: The quicker you seek treatment, the lower possibility you stand of intensifying symptoms.

Depression presents differently in everyone, but can generally be divided into seven categories: clinical depression, persistent depressive disorder, bipolar depression, postpartum depression (PPD), premenstrual dysphoric disorder, seasonal affective disorder (SAD), and atypical depression.

Clinical Depression

Also referred to as major depressive disorder. This is the standard form of depression and is characterized by the following key symptoms:

  • Lack of interest in hobbies
  • Changes in sleep
  • Fatigue
  • Changes in weight
  • Depressed mood
  • Feelings of self-hate and guilt
  • Feelings of worthlessness
  • Thoughts of self-harm

Persistent Depressive Disorder

Also referred to as dysthymia, and is the type of depression that is chronic, or long-term. People who suffer from this form of depression may experience moments where they notice their depression has lifted, but these episodes are not a sign of being cured. They typically last less than two months at a time. Symptoms can include: 

  • Lack of enthusiasm in hobbies
  • Feelings of unhappiness
  • Feelings of self-hate and guilt
  • Feelings of hopelessness
  • Changes in appetite
  • Impatience
  • Irritability
  • Low self-esteem
  • Trouble concentrating

Bipolar Disorder

Also known as bipolar depression or manic depression. Bipolar disorder is a mood disorder that involves periods of elevated mood and manic behavior, sometimes referred to as mania. Many people with bipolar disorder also suffer intense periods of major depression between manic episodes. 

Bipolar disorder brings on many symptoms, both mental and physical, like: 

  • Fatigue
  • Insomnia
  • Unusual aches
  • Loss of self-esteem
  • Irritation
  • Indecision
  • Stress and anxiety
  • Lack of organization

Postpartum Depression

PPD is a form of depression that develops as a result of significant changes in hormone levels during/after pregnancy. It is more than just a case of the “baby blues” and should be taken seriously. Someone experienced PPD should be treated by a mental health professional for the best results. 

Symptoms can look like: 

  • Feelings of sadness
  • Mood swings
  • Trouble bonding with the baby
  • Social withdrawal
  • Feelings of hopelessness and helplessness
  • Changes in appetite
  • Lack of interest in hobbies
  • Anxiety and panic
  • Thoughts of self-harm
  • Thoughts of harming the baby
  • Suicidal ideations or thoughts

Premenstrual Dysphoric Depression

Related to premenstrual syndrome (PMS), symptoms may include:

  • Feelings of despair
  • Anxiety and panic
  • Mood swings
  • Trouble bonding with the newborn
  • Lack of interest in hobbies
  • Social withdrawal
  • Feelings of hopelessness and helplessness
  • Changes in appetite
  • Thoughts of self-harm
  • Thoughts of harming the baby
  • Suicidal ruminations or thoughts

Seasonal Affective Disorder

Believed to be caused by disturbances in the body’s circadian rhythm. This type of depression is thought to be affected by the changes in the seasons. 

Atypical Depression

A form of depression that does not adhere to the set of characteristics that usually becomes of someone with depression. These alternative symptoms may look like: 

  • Fatigue
  • Weight gain
  • Excessive eating and sleeping
  • Sensitivity to rejection
  • Strongly reactive moods

Lifestyle Changes

All forms of depression should be treated with the help of your primary healthcare provider, but there are certain lifestyle changes that can be made that are very useful when combined with a treatment like ketamine infusion.

Treatment Plan

An essential part of the healing process is to develop a healthcare plan and stick to it. Do not skip ketamine infusions, psychotherapy sessions, or neglect to take your prescribed medications. These treatments may take months at a time, and they may not alleviate all of your symptoms, but recovery takes time. Have patience and trust your healthcare providers.

Educate Yourself

To learn is to understand and to understand it to heal. Learn as much as you can about your disorder so that you pick up new ways to combat it. Your family and friends can also become educated on the nature of your symptoms so that they too can help understand and help you towards feeling better.

Watch for the Warning Signs

Work with your therapist and/or healthcare provider to learn what triggers your symptoms. It may help to keep a journal so that you can discover patterns in the depressive episodes. This way, with the help of your therapist and/or healthcare provider, you can formulate a plan on what to do next time one of your symptoms begins to show.

Avoid Alcohol & Drug Abuse

It’s important to keep in mind that while alcohol and/or drugs may help reduce the pain of depression symptoms temporarily, they will only create more problems and worsen your symptoms in the long run. It also carries the risk of making your illness harder to treat.

Don’t Forget to Take Care of Yourself

All forms of depression should be treated with the help of your primary healthcare provider, but there are certain lifestyle changes that can be made that are very useful when combined with a treatment like ketamine infusion.

Ready To Get Started?

Take the first step towards integrative wellness today. Schedule your consultation with Flow Integrative to see if our treatment options are right for you. The time for healing is now.
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