Ketamine is a hallucinogenic drug that is commonly referred to as a dissociative anesthetic or a club drug. Although widely used in veterinary practices for the tranquilization of small animals, the drug is common abused on the streets. Ketamine abuse is a dangerous, potentially addictive situation that can lead to a diverse range of side-effects including overdose and death. The hallucinogenic properties of the drug make the outcome of each high extremely unpredictable and equally dangerous.
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Methods of Ketamine Abuse
Most of the time, ketamine is abused in social situations such as in nightclubs or parties. The drug is either snorted in powder form or ingested orally. In rare cases, Ketamine can be injected though the majority of ketamine that makes it to the streets has already been dried into a powdery substance and then mixed with another agent.
When Ketamine is abused, the method of use plays a key role in the amount of time that it takes the user to feel the effects of the drug. When ingested, ketamine generally takes 5-30 minutes to begin producing hallucinogenic effects. Snorted through a straw, Ketamine effects begin in mere minutes. When injected, Ketamine may take less than 3 minutes to begin working on the user.
Dangers of Ketamine Abuse
Abusing Ketamine, such as using the drug recreationally to get high, can and will lead to a serious dangers including the potential for increased tolerance, drug dependence and subsequent withdrawal. In addition to these potential dangers of Ketamine abuse, the user may also experience impaired motor functioning which could lead to accident or injury, delirium which could lead to suicidal thoughts or behaviors, and aggressive behavior. Death may result if the user takes too much Ketamine and overdoses.
According to research studies, sustained Ketamine abuse can lead to drug tolerance. Tolerance is the result of developing a dependence on Ketamine which requires the user to take more and more of the drug in order to feel its effects. As tolerance builds, the user will require more of the drug and the excessive use can lead to a wide range of potential hazards including an increased risk of overdose.
Upon the development of tolerance, the user will gradually become more dependent on Ketamine. Abusive use of this drug has a high change of leading to addiction. While many hallucinogenic drugs are not widely considered addictive, ketamine abuse is often linked to dependence and usually leads the user to begin using other substances too such as alcohol, weed or opiates.
When a user who has abused Ketamine for a prolonged period of time decides to stop taking the drug, he or she will likely suffer from a wide array of withdrawal symptoms. Some of the most common symptoms of Ketamine withdrawal include cravings and depression but additional physical symptoms may also be present when the user tries to quit. Ketamine withdrawal symptoms have yet to be backed by a foundation of research but many users report feeling adverse symptoms when they have abused the drug for a long time and then attempt to quit.
Treatment for Ketamine Abuse
If you or someone you love is regularly abusing Ketamine, consider seeking professional help immediately. Treatment for Ketamine abuse will be based on determining the nature of the abuse and the purpose of the drug use and then narrowing down the causes to help prevent future use. Counseling and therapy will be provided to help you overcome the stress or other challenges surrounding the Ketamine use and to heal from the pain or psychological upset that comes from having used the drug.
Studies show that people who abuse ketamine suffer adverse reactions to their memory, concentration levels and psychological well-being for as much as a full year following their decision to quit. Treatment can provide some solace for the adverse effects that Ketamine has had on your psychological well-being while also providing a strong foundation for recovery. The only way to get sober and to remain sober is to seek professional help and to be open and honest with the treatment provider about the elements surrounding your addiction.
For help finding a Ketamine abuse treatment program, call our toll-free hotline at 800-601-3889 (Who Answers?).