What is Anxiety?
Anxiety disorders are the most common mental illness in the U.S., affecting 18.1% of the population each year. These disorders develop from a complex set of risk factors, including genetics, brain chemistry, personality, diet, and life events. Anxiety is your mind placing stress into overdrive without your conscious control. Anxiety disorders are often treated with generic antidepressants or benzodiazepines. However, 30-40% of patients treated with this drugs will not achieve remission. Anxiety is the brain's response to a myriad of different conditions and external factors perceived as a threat by your body. Everyone experiences small amounts of normal anxiety every day, however Generalized Anxiety Disorder is stress and anxiety you cannot control in the moment.
How does Ketamine treat Anxiety?
Conventional Antidepressants and Benzodiazepines work by blocking the GABA receptor in the brain and increasing neurotransmitters such as Serotonin, Norepinephrine, and Dopamine. Ketamine acts in a different mechanism. Ketamine blocks the NMDA receptor in the brain allowing it to modulate the production of the neurotransmitter Glutamate. The function of most, if not all, of the cells in the brain are regulated by Glutamate. This includes the calming neurotransmitter, GABA. Thus, most disorders in the brain involve some degree of Glutamate dysfunction. This reset from administration of Ketamine creates an environment that allows receptors, proteins, and neural pathways to work in more optimal ways that they were not able to before due to anxiety.