Innovative New PTSD Treatment in Chattanooga, TN
Nearly 16 million people suffer from depression and more than 7 million are affected by post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD). The two conditions tend to go hand-in-hand, as those who suffer from PTSD often experience depression in their lives. Nearly twice as many women suffer from depression as men, and even though PTSD is mostly associated with male soldiers coming back from war, any traumatic event such as a car accident or sexual assault can cause the condition.
While there are dozens of medications to treat depression and PTSD, some of which overlap, most merely cover up the problem. Many medications work on the assumption that you don’t have enough serotonin in your brain and if you replace enough of these feel-good hormones, you will feel better. These medications often take weeks to months to work, if they work at all.
What Causes PTSD?
PTSD is usually caused by going through (or occasionally, witnessing) a traumatic event that threatens serious injury or death. Medical science still can’t completely explain why people develop PTSD, but research indicates it may be a complicated mix of:
- Stressful experiences
- Family history of mental health disorders
- How your brain is regulating the hormones and chemicals in your body in response to stress
What Are The Symptoms of PTSD?
The symptoms of PTSD generally start within a month of the original traumatic event, but in some cases may not appear until even years after the event. The symptoms tend to cause problems at school or work and in personal relationships, and also interfere with your daily life.
There are generally four types of PTSD symptoms: intrusive memories, avoidance, negative moods, and changes in physical and emotional reactions. Symptoms may vary from time to time or person to person.
What Treatments Are Available for PTSD?
After suffering from PTSD for a while, you may lose your ability to carry out everyday tasks or grow isolated from your loved ones. Finding a treatment that works for you can help you regain control over your life and get relief from your symptoms. Treatment can help you learn to manage symptoms as well, by teaching you:
- How to properly address your symptoms
- How to cope if symptoms pop up again
- How to think better about yourself
- How to treat other problems brought on by a traumatic event (such as depression, anxiety, or substance abuse)
The most common or effective treatments for PTSD include the following:
- Ketamine Infusions
- Psychotherapy: Also known as talk therapy. May include cognitive therapy (which helps you recognize the thinking patterns worsening your symptoms), exposure therapy (which helps you face situations or memories that worsen your symptoms), and eye movement desensitization and reprocessing (EMDR).
- Medications: Typically antidepressants such as paroxetine (Paxil) or sertraline (Zoloft).
- Ketamine Infusions: An exciting new treatment option that research shows can bring relief to up to 80% of patients.
Does Ketamine for PTSD Really Work?
Ketamine has now been introduced as a new alternative treatment for those patients that have not responded well to other options for PTSD. One huge benefit of Ketamine infusions over oral medications is that if an individual is going to respond positively to ketamine, the patient will notice an improvement in his/her symptoms within hours to days rather than weeks to months.
Recent studies at Columbia University and other world-renowned institutions have demonstrated a greater than 70% success rate for treatment of depression and PTSD with low-dose ketamine intravenous infusion therapy. Also, recent research has shown that even a single infusion of ketamine can cause a rapid decrease in PTSD symptoms and if an individual is going to respond to ketamine infusions, both the patient and the practitioner will know after 1-2 infusions.