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Overcoming ketamine addiction can present significant challenges, but at Right Path Rehab, we offer the essential resources and expertise to support your journey toward lasting recovery.

San Diego Ketamine Addiction Treatment

Ketamine, originally developed as an anesthetic for pets, is now used by humans and has gained popularity in recent years as a recreational “club drug” because of its euphoric qualities. Many people, especially teens and young adults, often use ketamine at bars, nightclubs, concerts and parties because its dissociative properties produce an “out of body” experience and a dream-like state of delirium.

People who use ketamine often experience intense emotional mood swings. They lose touch with reality – they see, hear and feel things that are not actually there. The drug causes these symptoms by disrupting the part of the brain that regulates sensory perception, hunger and other characteristics. 

Ketamine is still used in medical care, particularly when other medications may be too strong for an individual patient, or for children who have an adverse reaction to other anesthetics. Sold under the brand name Katalar, it has been classified as a Schedule III controlled substance, which means it may lead to physical dependence, but users are generally unlikely to develop a strong psychological dependence.

Because ketamine is only available legally with a prescription, drug dealers have been known to burglarize veterinary clinics to obtain the drug. In some instances, ketamine is smuggled into the U.S. from other countries such and England and Mexico, where it is legal, inexpensive, and easy to obtain.

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If you or a loved one are ready to overcome drug or alcohol abuse, our addiction specialists are here to guide you through every step. Many of our dedicated staff members are in long-term recovery themselves and understand firsthand the challenges of the recovery journey. This personal experience, combined with our professional expertise, allows us to offer compassionate, effective support tailored to your unique needs.

The Risks Of Ketamine Abuse

The high from ketamine usually lasts less than an hour, but many users will binge on the drug to get a longer-lasting effect. With extremely high doses, users have described having a “near-death experience” while using ketamine, and others say there were in a state of “utter bliss.” This effect is known in slang as the “K-hole.”

Ketamine is produced in several forms: as a pill, a powder that can be snorted or dissolved in water, or as liquid that can be injected. It has been used as a date rape drug in recent years. Because it is odorless and tasteless, it can be added to a victim’s drink without detection, and it can cause a loss of mobility and speech, making anyone who takes it extremely vulnerable.

The risk of overdose increases if other drugs or alcohol are being used at the same time as ketamine. The leading cause of death from ketamine overdose is respiratory failure. 

Common side effects of ketamine use

  • Elevated blood pressure
  • Increased heart rate
  • Loss of coordination
  • Flashbacks
  • Hallucinations
  • Respiratory issues
  • Paranoia
  • Depression
  • Muscle weakness
  • Long-term cognitive difficulties

Street names for ketamine

Ketamine’s street names often make reference to its initial intended use as an anesthetic for household pets.

  • Kit Kat
  • Cat Valium
  • Special K
  • Dorothy
  • Vitamin K
  • Green
  • Jet

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Treatment For Ketamine Addiction

Withdrawal symptoms from ketamine may include confusion, agitation, anger, hallucinations and insomnia. Patients who have a severe addiction may become emotionally unstable and exhibit violent tendencies – sometimes to such a degree that they must be isolated to protect themselves and others around them. It’s important to seek help at a professional rehab facility where you have clinical supervision during withdrawal to ensure a controlled, safe and comfortable recovery.

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MEDICALLY REVIEWED BY

Alexis Ecoff MA, LMFT, MCAP
As the Clinical Director for Right Path Recovery in San Diego, Alexis brings a wealth of knowledge and experience to the field of counseling and therapy. She has a strong academic background with a B.S. in Psychology and a B.S. in Family and Child Sciences from Florida State University, and an M.A. in Marriage and Family Therapy from the University of San Diego. Alexis is licensed in Marriage and Family Therapy in California, Florida, Connecticut, and Massachusetts, and is a member of the American Association for Marriage and Family Therapy (AAMFT).
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