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Why Ketamine-Assisted Psychotherapy is Worth It

November 18, 2022

The mental health field consists of a multitude of different theories, therapies and interventions, all designed to help clients manage symptoms, heal from trauma, and live more authentic lives. People experience growth through talk therapy much of the time, however, deep change and healing can often take a long time. Some continue to feel stuck using these models, and even with years of therapy are unable to experience lasting change. Ketamine-Assisted Psychotherapy (KAP) can be a helpful alternative when traditional systems have been exhausted. 

Ketamine on its own has wonderful antidepressant properties, relieving symptoms of depression for up to six weeks in clinical trials. When paired with therapy from a trained clinician, as in Field Trip’s model, the effects have an even longer duration. 

KAP gives clients the opportunity to fully prepare themselves for the ketamine experience by processing and integrating the experience in the days following a ketamine session. Of our three in-clinic offerings, clients who opt for the “+ Extra Support” model have the opportunity for a therapist to witness their process and provide in-the-moment care. “Support plus” includes a one-to-one ratio of dosing days to integration talk therapy sessions, providing the most assistance around your exploration sessions out of all tiers we offer.  

 

Clients with active trauma symptoms, or those who have treatment-resistant depression and anxiety benefit from ketamine’s unique properties. Ketamine is a non-specific amplifier, so it works on multiple receptors in the brain. It reduces sensory input, allowing increased focus on cognitive and emotional responses. As such, ketamine provides clients space to explore otherwise traumatic or distressing memories within a greater window of tolerance, allowing for increased regulation and decreased identification with specific experiences. 

During the debriefing period immediately after a ketamine session, clients share thoughts, sensations, emotions experienced during ketamine and receive support from a trained therapist. Our therapists can help a client make sense of the ketamine journey and identify ways to continue the integration process. 

Because ketamine increases neuroplasticity, pairing ketamine with therapy results in sustainable change. When clients practice skills and ways of being during this period of enhanced learning, their desired new habits are easier to develop.  

Ketamine-assisted therapy is a welcomed catalyst for change, shifting perspective and unsticking old thought patterns. Clients leave treatment confident in their ability to continue developing lives filled with satisfaction.