The Myths and Misconceptions of Ketamine
Mystery and misunderstanding have shrouded ketamine for years. While it’s a potent prescription medication with various medical uses, it’s often linked with recreational use and misconceptions about its safety and potential for addiction. You may have heard things like, “ketamine is a party drug,” or “you’ll get addicted once you start ketamine infusions.” On a deeper level, these statements are far from the truth.
Let’s bust six popular myths surrounding ketamine, separating fact from fiction about this complex medication.
What Is Ketamine Good For?
Ketamine offers a plethora of potential benefits, including the treatment of mental health disorders. In low doses, ketamine can have rapid and significant effects on reducing symptoms of depression and anxiety. Some studies report improvement within hours of administration.1
Doctors may prescribe ketamine to patients with acute and chronic pain if traditional medications aren’t working.
What Are the Common Misconceptions of Ketamine?
Ketamine infusions have become a popular treatment option for various conditions like depression, anxiety, and pain. But there are countless fallacies about ketamine for anxiety that led to misunderstandings about its use and benefits.
Here are six common myths about ketamine that aren’t true:
Myth #1: Ketamine Is a Recreational Drug
One of the biggest myths about ketamine is that it’s a party drug. But it’s not only used for recreational purposes. Ketamine is a widely used and potent prescription medication that benefits human health in many ways:
- Anesthetic for surgery
- Treats chronic pain
- Alleviates depression
- Mitigates anxiety symptoms
- Helps with PTSD, OCD, and other conditions
While ketamine is sometimes misused, it has numerous legitimate medical uses. Studies have shown ketamine’s therapeutic effects “offer a potential alternative treatment for depression, suicide ideation, SUD, and PTSD.”2
Myth #2: Ketamine is Only for Veterinarians
Ketamine is popular in veterinary medicine, but that’s not the only use case. It can also help humans treat pain, depression, and other conditions. In fact, doctors and medical professionals have been using ketamine in human medicine for over 50 years.
It boasts unique benefits that make it a useful medication, such as:
- Rapid onset of action and relief could save lives3
- Ability to provide sedation without significantly suppressing circulation or breathing
- Promising treatment option for those who haven’t responded to traditional medicine
- Improves moodiness, low self-esteem, and feelings of hopelessness
- Promotes better sleep
- Increases concentration and appetite
- Safe and effective under professional care and supervision
Myth #3: Ketamine is Highly Addictive
Ketamine therapy can be addictive if you use it recreationally.
Like any drug, long-term use of any substance can lead to addiction, tolerance, and dependence. But ketamine is safe and not addictive as long as you use it as prescribed and trust a reputable provider.
A qualified professional will administer ketamine infusions in low doses to start. He/she may adjust the dosage over time to provide relief for conditions like anxiety. The gradual changes don’t give the “addictive high” that recreational users get from careless dosing.4
At Ketamine Therapy LA, we strive to help you reach a point where you need fewer doses as you heal.
Myth #4: Ketamine Is a Miracle Drug
Ketamine infusions alone won’t fix all your problems in one dose. It’s far from a “magic pill,” which means patients with mental health issues need to put in the work to get better. This may include therapy sessions, staying active, eating nutritious foods, and getting enough sleep.
Ketamine has the potential to be a viable treatment when used in a holistic, all-encompassing approach. Practicing a healthy lifestyle can help you maximize your ketamine results.
Myth #5: Ketamine Can't Help with Depression
Ketamine has shown promise as a treatment for depression, particularly for patients who don’t respond to other treatment options. Several studies have demonstrated the rapid and significant effects of ketamine on reducing symptoms of depression. In one study, patients experienced a reduction in anxiety and depression symptoms within an hour of administration.5
Myth #6: Ketamine Is Experimental
You may have heard people say ketamine is illegal, unproven, and untested. While new studies are coming out every day about the treatment, there’s already solid evidence that ketamine works. A study revealed that 70% of patients with treatment-resistant depression experienced relief with the nasal spray form of ketamine.6
Is Ketamine Right for Me?
Determining whether ketamine is right for you involves considering some factors:
- Your medical history
- Your current health
- Reasons why you’re considering it
The best candidates for ketamine infusions are people who:
- Haven’t found relief from traditional medication for their anxiety, depression, OCD, and other mental disorders
- Are experiencing severe symptoms and need instant relief
While Ketamine can provide immense pain relief and minimize symptoms of mental disorders, it’s not suitable for everyone. For example, pregnant women and patients with certain medical conditions may not be able to take ketamine safely.
Discuss treatment options with a qualified healthcare provider like Ketamine Therapy LA at CRMC to determine your best course of action.
Ketamine Infusions in West Hollywood, CA
Do you have a mental disorder that no medicine seems to alleviate? Ketamine infusions may provide the relief you’ve been needing. If you’re in West Hollywood or Greater Los Angeles, look no further than Ketamine Therapy LA at CRMC for this alternative treatment. We have helped thousands of men and women feel better and lead meaningful lives. Take control of yours today—call us at (323) 650-9883 to schedule a free consultation.
Make an Appointment
1. The Role of Ketamine in Treatment-Resistant Depression: A Systematic Review, Current Neuropharmacology, Gianluca Serafini,* Robert H Howland, Fabiana Rovedi, Paolo Girardi, and Mario Amore
2. The Therapeutic Effects of Ketamine in Mental Health Disorders: A Narrative Review, Cureus Publishing Beyond Open Access, Carolina Sepulveda Ramos, Matthew Thornburg, Kelly Long, Kiran Sharma, Julia Roth, Diana Lacatusu, Reece Whitaker, Daniel Pacciulli, Sulma Moredo Loo, Mohammad Manzoor, Yun-Yee Tsang, Sydney Molenaar, Karthikeyan Sundar, and Robin J Jacobs
3. The rapid-onset antidepressant effect of ketamine: More surprises?, National Library of Medicine, R B Raffa, J V Pergolizzi Jr, R Taylor Jr; NEMA Research Group
4. Are Ketamine Infusions Additive?, American Society of Ketamine Physicians, Samuel Ko, MD
5. Efficacy of ketamine therapy in the treatment of depression, Indian Journal of Psychiatry, Suprio Mandal, Vinod Kumar Sinha, and Nishant Goyal
6. How Ketamine Drug Helps with Depression, Yale Medicine, Jennifer Chen
Make an Appointment