When a psychiatrist diagnoses a patient with depression, a commonly recommended treatment is one of the various antidepressants. However, there are some drawbacks to these traditional medications. Esketamine, on the other hand, is an alternative treatment method for those who have not had good results with antidepressants. It offers some benefits that antidepressants do not.There…
Esketamine is an Intranasal Form of Ketamine Therapy
Have you spoken with your psychiatrist lately about how your treatment for severe depression is not working? Major depression affects more than your mood: You may struggle to take care of your physical health, manage your school or work responsibilities, and plan for your future.
Though selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors such as sertraline and paroxetine are traditional pharmaceutical treatments for severe depression, they may not work well enough to relieve your most prominent symptoms. Consider esketamine therapy, a new, FDA-approved intranasal medication for treatment-resistant depression.
What is esketamine?
Ketamine was a medication originally used as an anesthetic during the Vietnam War era. It was then used in emergency rooms as a treatment for patients with suicidal thoughts and severe depression. It is also used as a street drug because it causes euphoria and dissociative feelings (like being outside of one's body) in high doses.
It is thought that ketamine works to help the brain form new synapses by stimulating the N-methyl-D-aspartate, or NMDA, receptors in the brain. Esketamine is a form of ketamine that is available for use in your psychiatrist's office in an intranasal form.
What should patients know about using intranasal esketamine to treat depression?
Many people with severe, treatment-resistant depression are not aware that there are additional treatments they can try once they have exhausted their medication options and different types of therapy. Esketamine therapy should be considered for these patients for the following reasons:
It can provide quick symptom relief
According to the Psychiatric Times, intranasal esketamine provides swifter relief of symptoms when compared to SSRIs and other traditional treatments. Many patients who have not experienced relief from medications have noticed a dramatic difference within the first few weeks. SSRI therapy, in contrast, can take up to six weeks to take effect.
It is usually covered by insurance
If you have insurance, there is good news: It will probably pay for your esketamine therapy. Now that this medication has been approved by the FDA for treatment-resistant depression, you have a higher chance of getting approved for reimbursement. Speak to your psychiatrist to determine whether your insurance will cover your treatment and whether esketamine nasal spray is the feasible option for your type of depression.
It may be more difficult to administer
Esketamine therapy is not available for at-home use yet, but it may be in the future. Now, you will have to go to your psychiatrist's office, use the nasal spray, and wait while your doctor and his or her staff monitor your vital signs for the next two hours. This procedure is put in place to ensure your safety as ketamine can cause side effects such as cognition changes and dissociation for a little while after you use it.
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If you struggle with a form of depression that has not responded well to traditional treatments such as antidepressant medication and cognitive-behavioral therapy, your psychiatrist can now provide more options. Esketamine nasal spray is a research-backed and FDA-approved treatment for depression for adults who have the treatment-resistant subtype.
According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, nearly 20% of adults in the United States experience symptoms of depression regularly. A psychiatrist can help people manage these symptoms effectively, resulting in a better quality of life over time. Many treatment options exist, including:Individual talk therapyGroup or family counselingLifestyle changesCognitive behavioral therapyPrescription antidepressant medicationKetamine…
Depression can negatively affect one's life in many ways, which is why so many people seek treatment. One treatment that a psychiatrist may recommend is ketamine therapy. This treatment method is not for everyone, but it can be beneficial in a number of ways. It is especially effective for those who are not responding well…