Ketamine therapy is arguably the most effective depression treatment available on the market today. 70% of patients see a marked improvement in their symptoms. A “marked improvement,” however, doesn’t mean that a patient goes from suicidal to sunshine and rainbows overnight, though there are some dramatic success stories. More often, ketamine infusion therapy lifts the fog of depression just enough to enable the patient to live a richer, more fulfilling life. Thus, to get the most out of ketamine therapy, patients must also make healthy lifestyle choices that help them build resiliency against future episodes of depression.
If you or a loved one experience relief after your ketamine treatments, take advantage of the opportunity and put your brain’s improved functionality to work! Some healthy activities to engage in include:
PREPARE HEALTHY, WHOLE FOODS
Eliminate processed foods and additives such as refined sugar, MSG and artificial sweeteners – which are linked to depression – and include plenty of healthy Omega-3 fatty acids in your diet.
EXERCISE, EXERCISE, EXERCISE!
Physical exercise offers a seemingly endless amount of mood elevating benefits: increased circulation resulting in more efficient delivery of oxygen, glucose and nutrients to the brain; elimination of toxins and free radicals from the body; new, healthy connections between brain cells; and it improves the way the brain responds to stress. In fact, exercise has proven itself a more effective depression treatment than many SSRI antidepressant medications. The exercise you do today offers health benefits for as long as five years into the future. Exercise may be the single most effective way to maximize the positive effects of your ketamine therapy.
MEDITATION FOR DEPRESSION
As recently discovered in a study by Johns Hopkins University, practicing meditation is immensely useful in treating all kinds of psychiatric and mood disorders, but especially depression. Meditation increases serotonin levels, lowers stress levels, and reduces brain inflammation, all of which are thought to reduce the symptoms of depression. We do, however, say “practicing” meditation for a reason – don’t be discouraged if you struggle with meditation at first. With practice, patience and consistency, meditation could be key to maintaining the benefits of your ketamine treatments.
Gratitude and depression have an inversely proportional relationship, with studies showing that depressed people express 50% less gratitude than control groups. Get into the habit of writing down three things that you are grateful for every day – even if you have to start small. The bed you sleep in, the air you breathe. Practicing gratitude helps reduce the toxic emotions that underlie your depression while boosting dopamine, seratonin and oxytocin production in the brain.
Vitalitas is one of the first clinics in the country to offer patients sublingual doses of ketamine to help them maintain the positive effects of their infusions in between visits to our clinic. This is an especially good option for patients who travel long distances to and from our office. Not all patients are candidates for this ketamine maintenance treatment; we prescribe oral ketamine on a per-client basis.
If your symptoms improve even slightly after receiving ketamine infusions, don’t let the opportunity to build some resiliency pass you by. Get to work immediately on building your own natural immunity to depression through nutrition, exercise, meditation, and gratitude.
If you'd like to speak with us about how to get the most out of your ketamine infusions, or if you have any general questions about this life-changing depression treatment, please contact us.