What is Ketamine-Assisted Therapy?
Who should consider KAT?
Ketamine is used off-label for various mental health struggles, including depression, chronic pain, anxiety, post-traumatic stress disorder, and addiction.
Some medical and psychiatric conditions need to be treated before you can safely work with ketamine. These include hallucinations, untreated mania, forms of cardiovascular disease, uncontrolled hyperthyroidism, increased intracranial pressure, cystitis, evidence of liver disease, or addiction recovery that could be jeopardized by IV medication administration.
A medical and psychological intake will help you determine if you are an appropriate candidate for this work.
What is Ketamine?
Ketamine has been used off-label in sub-anesthetic doses in psychotherapy for more than 20 years to treat chronic pain, depression, and a variety of other mental health concerns, thanks to its rapid onset antidepressant effects, sometimes providing nearly immediate relief from emotional and physical pain. While the antidepressant effects tend to be temporary after a single ketamine treatment, multiple treatments have proven to have a cumulative impact, successfully alleviating symptoms in up to 60% of individuals 60% of individuals with treatment-resistant depression.
In moderate doses, ketamine has psychedelic effects, which have been shown to facilitate profound transpersonal experiences. These types of incidents can help people in various ways, offering important clarity and insight into one’s struggles, adding a spiritual/transcendent dimension to ongoing therapeutic work, and facilitating a sense of meaning and interconnectedness.
What to Expect?
During a 2 hour KAT session, clients first meet with medical staff that will administer the ketamine. Before the ketamine is administered, clients meet with their KAT therapist for 20 minutes to prepare. Ketamine is then given through an IV with onset around 5-10 minutes and duration around 60 minutes. The therapist will be present and engaged throughout the experience and help the client begin integrating their insights after the medication has stopped being administered.
Upon reentering waking consciousness, there will often be much to process, and not all of it will make immediate sense. This initial stage of returning and remembering is a vital aspect of KAT, where insights can be brought back, processed, and digested into takeaways that can be implemented into one’s daily life. Having a therapist familiar with these journeys can significantly enhance the long-term impact of the ketamine experience along with helping find one’s equilibrium and sense of feeling grounded after coming back from such a profound journey.
After your KAT sessions
You may wish to participate in stand-alone integration sessions in which we will help you integrate your experience during the ketamine session, discuss how you responded to the medicine, and determine an individualized course of treatment moving forward. Generally, multiple ketamine sessions are required to experience lasting effects. We recommend a commitment to a minimum of 3 sessions, as this medicine tends to have a cumulative effect and is most beneficial after multiple treatments. You and your care team will determine the exact number of KAT sessions based on need. Please contact us directly for more detailed information and to answer any questions you might have.
Our Therapists & Coach
Jordon is personally experienced with various psychedelic medicines, including ketamine, as well as spontaneous transcendent experiences. He has also worked with a diverse group of shamans and medicine practitioners. He practices Bikram Yoga, meditation, running, and extended plunges in freezing water.
Meghan combines her experience and knowledge of psychedelic medicines and non-ordinary states of consciousness with her warm and empathetic presence to provide a safe and supportive setting for deep exploration. She regularly snuggles with her dog, spends time in nature, and practices meditation to stay grounded and centered.
Shannon is a licensed psychologist who works with people from a variety of different backgrounds and across a broad range of human experiences. She has completed the PRATI psychedelic-assisted therapy certification training program. In her work, Shannon has found that ketamine can be an extremely powerful tool for facilitating self-exploration and an invitation to
unlock your inner healer. She believes her role in this process is to act as the guide or facilitator of this journey.
As a therapist, Shannon feels grateful to help clients along their journeys and share in their experiences. Overall, she works from a humanistic, holistic, and integrative perspective. She sees how we all exist and grow in the context of our relationships — to ourselves, our loved ones, and the world around us. She views therapy as a collaborative process centered around your preferences and goals as the client.
Shannon will share many different strategies to help you in your process, including strength-based interventions, cognitive-behavioral techniques, and mindfulness practices. Her approach is warm and relational; she will be curious and compassionate as she helps you share your story and develop greater awareness to
encourage your self-healing process.Therapy works best when you have an authentic relationship with your therapist. It’s Shannon’s goal to create a safe, affirming, and collaborative space for you, so you can identify and move towards what you want in life. She welcomes you to bring your identities, cultures, and rituals into your work together.
Marci loves being a psychedelic therapist– like, a lot. She is a Licensed Professional Counselor and earned her BS in Psychology from Texas State University, her MS in Counseling from Southern Methodist University, and completed the Ketamine Assisted Psychotherapy certification through PRATI. Marci thinks the integration of psychedelics with psychotherapy is a science and also an art form. She holds equal parts respect for the neuroscience behind this medicinal use, as well as a deep reverence for the symbols, emotions, and depth that comes from a psychedelic experience.
Working with Marci means working with the whole self– mind, body, and spirit. She intentionally brings a down-to-earth and caring presence to her sessions. When not working, Marci is happiest when she’s in the sunshine, well fed, or playing with her kitty and dog.
Find Your Light at Illumma
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