What Does Ketamine Feel Like? How Ketamine Treatment Works.

ketamine treatement

What Does Ketamine Feel Like? How Ketamine Treatment Works.

With the rising popularity of Ketamine treatment, it’s only natural to be curious about how it makes you feel how the treatment process works.

With its growing popularity as a treatment for a wide-ranging number of conditions, it’s increasingly likely you’ve heard of Ketamine as an emerging therapeutic option. As Ketamine treatment clinics continue to surface, we’re presented with a newly legal alternative to traditional medical approaches in our healing journeys. This inevitably raises important questions for anyone seeking this type of treatment. How does Ketamine feel? And how does Ketamine treatment work?

Let’s take a look.

First up, what is Ketamine? Ketamine was first used as an anesthetic in 1964 and is still used this way in medical settings because of its high safety profile, low incidences of side effects, and ability to wear off naturally. In lower doses, ketamine acts as a psychedelic, and recent research shows promise in ketamine as a treatment for depression and PTSD. It has also been used to treat chronic pain, eating disorders, and alcoholism. It’s considered safe and currently legal for medical use, making it popular for clinicians who work with psychedelic medicine.

What does ketamine feel like? In technical terms, Ketamine is a “dissociative anesthetic”, which basically means that it numbs your body and causes feelings of dissociation from your environment — a bit like observing your own life from a 3rd person perspective instead of living it. And although it can vary by person, generally a higher dose will deepen the experience.

Once administered, Ketamine quickly causes feelings of heaviness in the body and often sensations of drifting away from your body and returning. During this time, you may have intermittent awareness of the room and your vision may be blurred. The visual sensation most often noted is “seeing the world through a funhouse mirror”. This altered vision may cause motion sickness and nausea, and you may feel a little sluggish or drunk. Your motor control will be affected, and walking may be difficult. Some people report feeling like they are sinking into the bed. You may even feel a hypnagogic effect—the sense that you are falling as you drift to sleep.

Overall, research shows four distinct states of consciousness can occur during a ketamine experience. They are:

  • Empathogenic Experience. At low doses, ketamine acts like an empathogen, inducing feelings of empathy, oneness, and emotional openness while leaving the patient comfortable, relaxed, and aware of their body. They may also feel warm, dreamy, or euphoric and have mild visual effects.
  • Out-of body Experience. At slightly higher doses, the patient disconnects more from reality. The body feels heavy, and visuals are vivid and may be disconcerting. The result is a dream-like state that may include encounters with perceived beings and travel to other realms of consciousness.
  • Near-Death Experience (NDE). This is similar to a naturally occurring NDE in that it often promotes psycho-spiritual growth. The NDE can be calming, life-affirming, or even terrifying. Patients who better prepare for the experience are more likely to have a positive outcome.
  • Ego-Dissolving Transcendental. Like NDEs, ego-dissolving transcendental experiences can occur spontaneously, through meditation, or be induced by psychedelics. They often result in healing from addiction, personality disorders, or chronic illness, while inducing rapid psychospiritual growth, expanded worldviews, and long-term changes in behaviors.

Ketamine is a “dissociative anesthetic”, which basically means that it numbs your body and causes feelings of dissociation from your environment — a bit like observing your own life from a 3rd person perspective instead of living it.

How does the Ketamine treatment process work?

Each clinic has unique protocols, but most will require an initial consultation with a doctor. It’s also worth noting that there are different modes of administering ketamine, including an Intra-muscular (IM) injection, Intravenous (IV) infusion, or an oral lozenge.

A standard treatment plan involves preparation, a screening process, a series of ketamine treatment sessions, and post-treatment integration.

Let’s take a look at each step.

  • Ketamine Preparation. This begins prior to finding a clinic and can include the following things:
  • Ketamine Screening Process. Once a clinic is chosen, you will start the screening, qualification, and enrollment process. This includes:
    • Booking an appointment
    • Completing a new patient form
    • Interviewing with the prescribing physician
  • Ketamine Treatment.  This is when Ketamine is administered. The initial session will last from 30-90 minutes and then will start to fade. Typically, you will be wearing a blindfold and listening to music in a private setting under the care of a qualified professional. Onset of the experience is quick–within a few minutes for IM or IV administration.
  • Ketamine Post Treatment. After the treatment you’ll have the opportunity to integrate the experience into your life. You may continue to work with your psychedelic integration coach, implement changes and lessons you learned, and even return to the provider for treatment, if necessary.

How might you feel after a treatment? Patients often experience immediate relief from pain and depression symptoms during and for up to a week after the session. Commonly reported feelings after the experience include:

  • Psychological clarity
  • Feelings of being cleansed
  • Increased confidence
  • Feelings of happiness and well-being
  • State of inner peace
  • Feelings of detachment
  • Motivation to improve oneself
  • Strong feelings of empathy for everyone

Ketamine treatment presents a new option to traditional medicine, and can certainly feel unfamiliar and overwhelming, especially to those people who are new to psychedelic medicine. Hopefully this post has helped to demystify the treatment process and questions about what the experience will entail. As with any psychedelic treatment, the administration of ketamine is only one step in the staircase of healing. But with the proper support, it can help provide clarity for what the next steps might be.



Disclaimer: The views in this blog and of the blog writer do not necessarily represent Being True To You LLC. The writer of this blog is an independent contractor, and Being True To You does not necessarily endorse the content written within this blog. Being True To You does not advocate, suggest, approve or disapprove of the use of psychedelic medicines such as Ibogaine. The content written in this blog is not medical advice and is for entertainment purposes only. Being True To You provides transformational recovery and integration “coaching” to individuals and families through the addiction recovery and psychospiritual healing process. Coaching is not a medical service and is not regulated by any governmental authority. It is an emerging profession not accredited by any institution or organization. Being True To You coaching is not counseling or psychotherapy and does not use professional assessments or diagnose mental illness. Being True To You coaches are independent contractors who provide recovery coaching to Being True To You assigned clients on a case-by-case basis.



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