What is Obsessive Compulsive Disorder?
OCD is a mental health condition in which people have obsessive, and reoccurring thoughts. These thoughts are often unwanted and may come with ideas or sensations that they need to do repetitively. It is common for people to have reoccurring thoughts and behaviors, however when they start to affect your daily life and interfere with activities of daily living one may be diagnosed with OCD. People with OCD may be aware that their thoughts or actions are exaggerated, unnecessary, or false, yet they are unable to stop these compulsions. Some examples of OCD behaviors are excessive handwashing, fear of contact with a deadly virus or excessive health testing, avoidance, hoarding, or symmetry and ordering. The severity of OCD ranges, however when it impacts one's ability to function it may be time to seek intervention.
How does Ketamine treat OCD?
Although there is a lack of studies on Ketamine for OCD as compared to other mental health conditions, there have been some promising results. Currently, Ketamine is growing in popularity as one of the most effective alternate therapies for OCD from traditional SSRIs that can take up to 10 weeks to be effective. Subjects who have been studied experienced rapid reduction in obsessive thoughts with results lasting up to a week. The neurotransmitter Glutamate plays an important role in OCD and Ketamine blocks Glutamate neurotransmission. Repetitive Ketamine infusions have also been found to give time for the default mode network to reset which contributes to the repetitive thoughts and behaviors.