Depression Treatment in Philadelphia, PA
Depression can sap the meaning out of life. When a person feels tired, sad, and unable to enjoy parts of life they’re used to, carrying on becomes a struggle. Ketamine infusion therapy relieves the symptoms of depression in hours, for many, instead of the weeks a lot of antidepressants can take. While each patient’s conditions differ, 75% find relief through ketamine infusion therapy.
How Does Ketamine for Depression Work?
Ketamine is a non-competitive NMDA antagonist. Its effects may more specifically lie in inhibiting NMDA receptors in the lateral habenula, which is a brain region that deals with negative outcomes and predictions. (This is a different pathway than other psychiatric drugs, such as SSRIs, SNRIs, lamotrigine, antipsychotics, benzodiazepines, etc., use.)
In depression, the wiry receptors on neurons that permit signal transmission may recede, and the amygdala and hippocampus (both of which regulate mood) may lose mass. Research has shown that ketamine can trigger neural growth within days (and sometimes hours). Another theory is that ketamine breaks habitual thought patterns that underpin mood and behavior, creating a chance for learning new, healthier habits of thought. There is no current consensus on the mode of action, and other mechanisms may be found central to ketamine’s effects.
How Do You Know If You're Depressed?
When Do You Need Help?
Some people have only mild symptoms that stay manageable. While these people still need treatment, their lives are usually not completely disrupted. The following signs may mean it’s time to seek help:
- Irregular sleep habits, like sleeping all day
- Isolation from friends, family, and new acquaintances
- Substance abuse and other harmful forms of self-medication
- Frequent talk or thoughts regarding suicide
If Depression Goes Untreated
Unfortunately, many miss the early warning signs or put off seeking help until the negative impact of depression becomes more pronounced.
But putting off treatment until the symptoms are debilitating can wreak havoc on people’s lives.
While awareness is growing, many people do not understand the symptoms of depression in their loved ones’ lives. This can make sustaining a relationship through intensifying depression especially difficult. It is common for romantic relationships to fall apart and marriages to end in divorce when depression gets out of hand.
Addiction often accompanies depressive disorders. When a person uses drugs or alcohol to relieve their symptoms, it is called self-medicating. Though this strategy can provide short-term relief, the prolonged side effects can worsen depression.
How Does Ketamine Treatment for Depression Work?
Recent evidence points to ketamine’s inhibitory effects on the NMDA receptor in the lateral habenula. The lateral habenula is a brain region primarily responsible for encoding negative rewards or anti-reward cause-and-effect relationships. Those with depression and anxiety show an overactivity of burst firing in the lateral habenula. As a non-competitive NMDA antagonist, ketamine prevents glutamate from activating the NMDA receptor.
The inhibition of the NMDA receptor may cause a build-up of free glutamate, which then activates the AMPA receptors. When surplus glutamate activates the AMPA receptor, it releases a brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF) chemical. BDNF, in interaction with the mammalian target of rapamycin (mTOR), promotes new neural growth. This new growth may reroute the brain from hyperactive areas associated with negative reward signals, thereby providing long-term relief from depression.
What Can I do for a Loved One Who Is Depressed?
The best way to help someone showing signs of depression is to bring it out in the open. Let them know you care and offer to help them find a solution that alleviates their symptoms. Surrounding someone with this condition with support is the best way to help them find the treatment they need.
Now that more is known about depressive disorders, there is no reason to remain idle New treatments make it possible to manage the symptoms of depressive disorders so that everyone has the chance to live life to its fullest potential. Whether you or a loved one needs help, seek professional treatment with Voyage Health that provides long-lasting relief and makes life enjoyable again.
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