Is Ketamine a Psychedelic?
By TripSitter.Clinic • November 8, 2022
Subanesthetic doses of ketamine produce psychedelics effects such as various sense hallucinations, time and shape dilation, shifts in awareness and sense of self, synesthesia, unreality (Bowdle, A. T., Radant, et al 1998).
Psychedelics are substances that can alter your state of consciousness and perception. They have been used for centuries by cultures around the world for religious and spiritual purposes and more recently to treat various mental health conditions. Psychedelics can be natural or synthetic, and they can be consumed in different ways, such as through inhalation, injection, or ingestion. Ketamine is a synthetic drug that has been used for medical purposes since the 1970’s. It was first synthesized in 1962 and as such as been studied for 60 years (Restorative Health 2022). It is most commonly known as an anesthetic for humans and animals. However, in the past 20 years it has been growing in popularity for mental health due to it’s psychoactive effects and clinical benefits (Michael D. Kritzer, et al 2022). So, is ketamine actually a psychedelic? Let's take a closer look.
How Psychedelics Work:
Traditional psychedelics work by binding to serotonin receptors in the brain (Geyer, M. A. et al 2009). This action causes changes in the brain circuits that regulate mood, perception, and behavior. Psychedelics can cause visual and auditory hallucinations, alters your sense of time and space, and can cause you to feel detached from your body. The effects of psychedelics vary depending on the type of substance, the dose, the method of administration, the individual's mood and environment, and other factors.
Ketamine produces similar effects to traditional psychedelics, but works differently in the brain. It can cause visual and auditory hallucinations, dissociation from your body, changes in perception of time and space, and euphoria. However, ketamine also has some unique effects that set it apart from other psychedelics. For example, ketamine is known to cause out-of-body experiences and near-death experiences. Ketamine is also known to be very potent; just a small dose can produce powerful effects.
Ketamine and Mental Health:
Ketamine has been shown to be effective in treating depression and anxiety, among other mental health conditions (Thomas D. Hull, et al 2022). When used correctly, ketamine can be a safe and effective way to improve mental health. However, there are a few things to keep in mind when using ketamine. First, ketamine should only be used under the supervision of a medical professional. Second, ketamine should not be used in combination with other drugs, including alcohol. Third, ketamine can be very powerful and it’s best to be in a safe position such a reclining chair or laying down as it can impair balance. Finally, ketamine should not be taken if you have a history of certain mental health problems, like psychosis. If you take ketamine as directed and follow these safety guidelines, you can experience the benefits of this powerful psychedelic drug to improve a variety of mental health conditions.
Is Ketamine a Psychedelic?
The short answer is yes—Subanesthetic doses of ketamine produce psychedelics effects such as various sense hallucinations, time and shape dilation, shifts in awareness and sense of self, synesthesia, unreality (Bowdle, A. T., Radant, et al 1998). Thus, it’s considered a psychedelic because it produces similar effects to traditional psychedelics. However, ketamine also has some unique effects that set it apart from other substances in this class. If you're interested in trying ketamine, be sure to do your research beforehand and purchase it from a reputable source. And always start with a small dose to avoid any negative reactions.
At-home ketamine therapy and psychedelic integration is a legal treatment in the US for depression, including that which is treatment resistant. Reach out to TripSitter.Clinic today to schedule a medical evaluation with one of our expert physicians to see if you are a candidate. If approved, we’ll pair you with a specially trained Tripsitter and integration specialists to guide you through your healing journey.
"Psychedelic effects of ketamine in healthy volunteers: relationship to steady-state plasma concentrations."Bowdle, A. T., Radant, A. D., Cowley, D. S., Kharasch, E. D., Strassman, R. J., & Roy-Byrne, P. P. The Journal of the American Society of Anesthesiologists, 88(1), 82-88. (1998)
"Serotonin-related psychedelic drugs."Geyer, M. A., D. E. Nichols, and F. X. Vollenweider. Encyclopedia of neuroscience (2009): 731-8.
"Key considerations for the use of ketamine and esketamine for the treatment of depression: focusing on administration, safety, and tolerability, Expert Opinion on Drug Safety,"Michael D. Kritzer, Chi-Un Pae & Prakash S. Masand. 21:6, 725-732, DOI: 10.1080/14740338.2022.2069749 (2022)
History of KetamineRestorative Health Primary Care
At-home, sublingual ketamine telehealth is a safe and effective treatment for moderate to severe anxiety and depression: Findings from a large, prospective, open-label effectiveness trialThomas D. Hull, Matteo Malgaroli, Adam Gazzaley, Teddy J. Akiki, Alok Madan, Leonardo Vando, Kristin Arden, Jack Swain, Madeline Klotz, Casey Paleos. Journal of Affective Disorders, Volume 314, 2022, Pages 59-67, ISSN 0165-0327
By harnessing breakthrough, evidence-based psychedelic therapeutics and the latest clinical tools of virtual medicine, TripSitter.Clinic empowers patients to embark on a personalized, physician-directed treatment plan designed to give you the sustained relief you need from debilitating mental health conditions while opening up new pathways to healing.