Ketamine is a dissociative drug that was once a common anesthetic. Now people mainly use it as a recreational drug and as a veterinary anesthetic. Some medical doctors still use it in surgery if other anesthetics are either unavailable or unusable due to an allergy or other condition. Most people who use ketamine do so for its psychedelic properties. According to the National Institute on Drug Abuse, ketamine addiction is mainly psychological rather than physical. This makes ketamine very difficult to stop using.
Stage 1 – Detox
The first stage of the ketamine rehab timeline starts with a detoxification. This is the physical portion of the ketamine leaving your system. The ketamine crash is very difficult for some. Psychologically coming down from ketamine produces anxiety and memory loss.
After the crash, withdrawal begins. Although not generally life threatening, withdrawal from ketamine can be extremely unpleasant. The short term effects of withdrawal are:
- double vision,
- hearing loss,
- increased heart rate,
- rapid breathing,
- suicidal ideation, and
- loss of motor skills.
This stage of can be very difficult if not deadly without medical attention. Most of the people who go through ketamine detox op for medical detox, rapid detox, or medication assisted detox. Most of the physical signs are not immediately life threatening but the increased heart rate may cause damage to the heart or heart failure.
The double vision, and hearing loss are not usually permanent or even long term. Most of these issues are dealt with through the detox procedure and are resolved. In rare cases the both the changes in vision and the changes in hearing are permanent. This includes the chance of some minor hearing and visual problems.
The depression suffered during a ketamine detox is debilitating. Just as depression can kill through suicide and suicidal ideation, it can very easily cause someone to become suicidal if not properly treated. After detoxing from the drug, the second stage begins.
Stage 2 – Counseling
The second stage of ketamine rehab deals with finding the root of ketamine abuse and dealing with it. Most people who are addicted to ketamine are addicted for a reason. Whether that reason is to escape their life circumstances or to self treat an undiagnosed mental illness, ketamine addiction normally is due to something underlying. Some of the causes of ketamine addiction are:
- social anxiety,
- stress, and
- general boredom.
Counselors help to discover the reasons for the addiction and give you ways to combat the issues. This is sometimes a lifelong process.
Stage 3 – Aftercare
After dealing with the cause of ketamine addiction, the aftercare is to prevent relapse. If you suffer from a psychological addiction to ketamine, you will still crave the drug. After rehab, it is good to seek either community or peer support. Most people find this with friends, family, or community groups. Aftercare is extremely important to avoiding ketamine relapse.
For more information on ketamine addiction and rehab call us at 800-601-3889.