Living life amidst a fog of depression feels helpless—especially when relief comes in the form of pharmaceuticals that keep people spinning in a cycle of despair. Too often, patients with chronic depression take a slew of medications with unwanted side effects and are unaware that alternative therapies exist. In contrast, others have heard of options like ketamine therapy but are skeptical of its power to heal. After all, this psychedelic bears the weight of its reputation as a tranquilizer and party drug. How could most people think ketamine would rival antidepressants in its ability to alleviate debilitating mental disease?
Have you ever been out with friends and wondered why you couldn’t enjoy yourself? You wanted to be present, but you felt anxious. The tirade of obsessive thoughts wouldn’t stop. Perhaps you face situations like this every day. And maybe you’ve tried everything mainstream medicine prescribes, but nothing has eased your anxiety.
So you’re ready to let go of your past, quiet the negative mind chatter, and see what ketamine treatments have to offer. You’re all in. Except you have no idea what to expect. No worries. You’re right where you should be! Of course, a bit of guidance to prepare for the experience couldn’t hurt, right?
In the last 20 years, modern medicine has mapped the human genome, reduced HIV mortality by 80%, and diminished heart disease deaths by 40%. Yet in the last century, psychiatry has made virtually no progress in alleviating depression—the leading cause of disease in the industrialized world. In fact, prescription drugs often exacerbate the very symptoms they claim to assuage.
Ketamine is not a traditional psychedelic. When you take ketamine, the ground won’t melt before your eyes as you journey into a netherworld and dance the night away. Instead, you may see geometric patterns or relive a past experience. You might also see nothing at all, as your ego diminishes, you dissociate from the sense of self, and your limbs go progressively numb. As you relinquish control in the altered ketamine state, you enter a space of psychiatric healing.
As the pandemic remains firmly at the forefront of the headlines, a second silent epidemic continues to grow in its wake. According to MAPS, one in six Americans will experience treatment-resistant depression over their lifetime. An insidious disability that chronically affects careers, families, and lives – could the vaccine of hope come in the form of a trance-like dissociative known as ketamine?