8 million adults have PTSD each year in the United States (US Dept of Veterans Affairs). This is just a fraction of those that experienced trauma, which is disproportionately in women, military personnel and first responders.
Stressful, frightening or traumatic events affect some people so severely they struggle with continued symptoms for months or years. These symptoms interfere with their daily routine and can lead to other debilitating conditions such as anxiety, drug abuse, or medical conditions. They may experience flashbacks, bad dreams, racing heartbeat, feeling on edge, avoiding places or events and having cognitive problems with memory and mood.
A physician or mental health professional with experience in treating people with PTSD can properly diagnose someone with these symptoms. Common treatments include medications, such as antidepressants, and psychotherapy, like cognitive behavioral therapy or EMDR (eye movement and desensitization and reprocessing), for example. Ketamine therapy is gaining ground as a new, effective treatment for PTSD symptoms.
Research is showing that ketamine therapy can rapidly reduce the severity of PTSD symptoms and even associated depression. (JAMA Psychiatry 2014) Our patients at Spring Center of Hope are seeing this too. We strongly encourage work with a psychotherapist alongside our ketamine treatments. If you don’t have a therapist, we can suggest a professional for you that can either be present during your treatment or immediately afterward.
You may find more information about PTSD from the U.S. Department of Veteran Affairs (https://www.ptsd.va.gov/index.asp) or the National Institute of Mental Health (https://www.nimh.nih.gov/health/topics/post-traumatic-stress-disorder-ptsd/index.shtml#part_145371)