Treatment for Ketamine Addiction

What is Katamine

Ketamine (which is also referred to as K, Special K, Vitamin K, green, and jet) is a tranquilizer (anesthetic) that has some medical use with humans but is more commonly used in veterinary medicine. Ketamine is a “club drug,” a hallucinogen, and a dissociative drug. Other common dissociative hallucinogens are PCP and nitrous oxide (laughing gas). When abused for recreational purposes, Ketamine is commonly snorted in powder form, or injected in liquid form.

The Effects of Ketamine Abuse

Ketamine abuse can lead to a range of experiences and emotions, from a mild floating sensation to a hallucinogenic “out of body experience.”  These effects have made Ketamine a popular club drug (abused while attending dance parties, clubs, or all-night raves). Other common club drugs include Ecstasy (MDMA), Rohypnol, and GHB.

Monitoring the Future

According to the 2010 edition of the annual Monitoring the Future survey on drug use and attitudes among U.S. adolescents and teenagers, 1 percent of 8th graders, 1.1 percent of 10th graders, and 1.6 percent of 12th graders report having abused Ketamine at least once in the previous year.

In the 10 years that Ketamine abuse has been included in the MTF study, overall past-year Ketamine abuse among surveyed students has fallen from a high of 2.0 percent (in 2000) to 1.2 percent in 2010.

The Dangerous Side Effects of Ketamine Abuse

Ketamine abuse can lead to a number of dangerous side effects and when abused in combination with other drugs, such as alcohol or marijuana, the dangers are compounded. Some of the common side effects include:

How Addictive is Ketamine

Ketamine abuse does not usually lead to the type of physical addiction that results from the abuse of drugs such as Alcohol and Heroin. But the ability of Ketamine to impair a user’s cognitive abilities, and to lead to a desire for continued use, means that ending one’s ketamine abuse may not be as simple as just deciding to quit.

When trying to stop using Ketamine, users may experience cognitive, and psychological symptoms that make it difficult for them to cease their use of the drug. Also, if a person’s ketamine abuse resulted from a mental health issue, mood disorder, or behavioral problem, the co-occurring disorder may also preclude stopping without professional intervention.

Also, as is the case with any abuse of mind-altering substances, the risk of long-term cognitive impairments, psychosis, and paranoia, ketamine abusers may have great difficulty making wise decisions regarding their health and their behaviors.

Treatment for Ketamine Addiction

Treatment for Ketamine abuse and addiction depends upon several factors, including the age and gender of the patient, the length and severity of the patient’s drug problems, and the presence of any co-occurring disorders.

Treatment for ketamine abuse may be done on an outpatient, residential, or partial hospitalization basis.

What Does Katamine Addiction Treatment Encompass

Ketamine addiction treatment may include the following therapies and techniques:

  • Individual therapy
  • Group therapy
  • Family therapy
  • 12-Step education
  • Relapse-prevention instruction
  • Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT)
  • Dialectical Behavioral Therapy (DBT)
  • Biofeedback & Neurofeedback
  • Medication management
  • Anger management
  • Hypnotherapy
  • Recreation therapy

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