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It’s Not Just the Insight: How Ketamine Really Works in the Brain

by Clary Tepper, Ph.D.


You’ve probably been hearing about the “insight” and new clarity of thought that comes out of a ketamine treatment . . . and maybe found yourself feeling skeptical. Wondering if it really was something as simple as insight that could lead to such significant change. I wondered, too, when I first heard about ketamine. Was there something more happening? It turns out there was.


Ketamine helps you produce more naturally-occurring compounds, called growth factors, in your brain. The official terms for those growth factors are BDNF and GDNF (brain derived neurotrophic factor and glial derived neurotrophic factor, respectively). Those growth factors are present in all of us, and they act like fertilizer for the brain, helping it to repair itself. When the brain is stressed, neural pathways become dysfunctional. This can result in anxiety, depression, or other symptoms. Those growth factors (BDNF and GDNF) help the brain repair those damaged neural pathways. When the brain is functioning better, we see a reduction in symptoms.


So while you might gain new, helpful insights from your ketamine treatment, you are also repairing your brain in measurable and meaningful ways. A healthier brain is a happier brain, which is why ketamine can be so helpful for anxiety, depression, OCD, grief, and PTSD.


Call Catalyst Integration for Health in Sacramento today at 916.850.2299 to schedule a consultation and see if you are a candidate for ketamine treatment.


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