Ketamine-Assisted Therapy

Ketamine-Assisted Therapy

Ketamine is a dissociative medication that has a 50-year history of safe use as an anesthetic agent in medical procedures. Recently, ketamine has shown great promise as an off-label treatment for Treatment Resistant Depression (TRD), PTSD, OCD, substance use disorders, and other psychiatric diagnoses. A therapeutic dose is a fraction (10% – 25%) of the doses used in anesthesia procedures.

Ketamine creates a powerful dissociative experience that has been called the best currently available proxy for psychedelic medicine. Ketamine is now being used to speed psychotherapy and enhance neuroplasticity (positive brain changes), and Wholeness Center has been at the forefront of this cutting-edge treatment since 2016. 

National Trailblazers in Ketamine-Assisted Therapy

Wholeness Center was one of the first clinics in the country to offer ketamine-assisted psychotherapy and the use of multiple methods of administration. We are the only facility in the region to offer the combination of psychiatric evaluation and psychotherapists trained in Ketamine-Assisted Therapy. Wholeness Center is the only program in the state of Colorado that employs all four modalities of ketamine use: IV, IM, SQ and oral. We rarely use the nasal inhaler method because of unpredictable response and excessive cost. We do not believe in the infusion-only model of care found at most ketamine treatment facilities: where a provider delivers an infusion in a clinical room with little preparation, oversight, or integration to ensure a positive and effective treatment. Over time, our providers have found that the benefits of the infusion-only method are short-lived. We have found that integrating the powerful insights from the ketamine experience with talk therapy are necessary to make lasting behavior and personal changes.

Ketamine- Assisted Therapy at Wholeness is Different

Ketamine-Assisted Therapy at Wholeness offers a unique approach Wholeness Center stands apart as the sole program in Colorado that embraces all four modes of ketamine administration: IV, IM, SQ, and oral. Our philosophy diverges from the common infusion-only model often found at ketamine treatment facilities, which lacks comprehensive preparation, oversight, or integration for a truly effective and positive experience. Every ketamine-assisted therapy session at Wholeness encompasses a holistic range of combined services aimed at fostering symptom remission. These services are provided at no additional cost when you are an active patient receiving ketamine-assisted psychotherapy

Our comprehensive approach includes:

  • Two hour individual session with a ketamine-assisted trained psychotherapist
  • One personalized one-on-one sessions with our health coach, focusing on nutritional guidance, sleep hygiene, movement, and other essential lifestyle support. Enjoy one session for every three ketamine treatments.
  • Engage in two monthly classes that center around healthy routines, nutrition, sleep hygiene, and additional coping strategies. These courses are designed to reinforce your knowledge and action, fostering the maintenance and enhancement of your mental well-being.
  • Timely check-in calls following treatment sessions to ensure ongoing support and progress tracking.

The Ketamine-Assisted Therapy Experience

At Wholeness Center, we provide a psychedelic psychotherapy format with selected music, headphones, and eyeshades to deepen the inward journey and enhance the power found in this medicine. Sessions last about two hours and almost everyone finds the experience positive and helpful for the challenges they face. Over the last ten years we have witnessed an explosion of research that documents the benefits of ketamine for depression, trauma, OCD, addiction and other mental health challenges. 

Studies document that even treatment resistant depression with many failed courses of therapy and medications responds to ketamine, often very quickly. We think of it as a way to catalyze the benefits of psychotherapy by reducing our defensiveness and sensitivity while enhancing our ability to see our life in a new perspective. As evidence of this, multiple studies now document that ketamine typically eliminates suicidal ideation within hours.

Ketamine Can be Administered in the Following Ways

Sublingual (Oral Solution)

This method involves holding a ketamine solution in your mouth for 10 to 12 minutes while it is absorbed. Is similar to the lozenge method, but you do not need to wait for the lozenge to dissolve. Forewarning: this solution tastes like medicine, but it can be improved with a small amount of juice. The oral method comes on the slowest and can linger on for a few hours after the session. It is the gentlest form and can be dosed quite low to help with adjustment to this new form of psychotherapy. The oral method has the highest risk of nausea, but this can be reduced by spitting out the solution after the absorption period.

Intramuscular or Subcutaneous Injections (IM/SQ)

Intramuscular (IM) injections may be the most common form that we employ at Wholeness. This route uses an injection into the deltoid muscle of the arm. It is fast and intense with a powerful peak that occurs quickly. It is effective for breaking up old patterns of thought and experiencing full dissociation that pulls us out of our routine frame of mind and perspective. IM tends to have a clean finish with less side effects than any other method. Because this method is the most intense, we often will start with oral or SQ as the onset is more predictable. 

Subcutaneous (SQ) is a newer method that we have imported from Australia, where it is more commonly used. SQ injections are delivered under the skin of the arm, where they are absorbed more slowly than the IM method and offer a gentler and more sustained experience that can allow more time to process and explore in the altered ketamine state. It tends to have less side effects than the oral method and the onset can be more predictable.

Intravenous Line (IV)

Intravenous (IV) is the best established and most expensive route of administration. It requires an IV placed in the arm and close medical monitoring in a special treatment room. We have the ability to turn off the administration if blood pressure increases too much or other side effects become a problem. We can also speed or slow the drip rate to accommodate personal preference or specific concerns. This method potentially delivers the highest dose of ketamine into the brain over the 40-minute administration. We generally recommend the IV route to the most severely depressed and suicidal patients.

Individual Ketamine-Assisted Therapy (KAT)

The majority of our clients opt for individual Ketamine-Assisted Therapy. Individual KAT provides the following benefits:

  • One-on-one focus. Individual KAT involves sessions between the client and a therapist where the therapy is tailored to the individual’s specific needs, goals, and experiences. The therapy sessions are private and provide opportunity for deep exploration of personal issues.
  • Personalized treatment. Individual therapy allows for a highly personalized treatment plan. The therapist can adapt the therapy techniques and approach to suit the unique circumstances of the individual, considering their background, personality, unique needs, and therapeutic progress.
  • Enhanced privacy and confidentiality. Individual KAT offers a higher level of privacy as the sessions are confidential between the client and the therapist. 

Every single Individual KAT appointment is followed by an Integration Session, typically scheduled the next day, which is unique to the Wholeness Method. In the Integration Session, you will discuss the Ketamine journey with your therapist in order to better understand and process the experience. It is a crucial part of the overall treatment and will help you process and integrate the insights, emotions, and experiences that arose during the journey into your daily life.

Group Ketamine-Assisted Therapy 

Wholeness Center also leads Ketamine-Assisted Group Therapy programs. These groups can range from three to six weeks. Each program includes up to three ketamine sessions, integration and prepration work. 

Group KAT provides the following benefits:

  • Peer support and connection
  • Diverse perspectives that can help you process and reframe your individual issues
  • Lower cost 
  • Build stronger relationship and communication skills 

Upcoming Group Therapy Programs: see calendar

Dyadic Ketamine-Assisted Therapy 

Dyadic ketamine-assisted therapy is a new approach to healing and deepening the relationship between two people. Whether it is a romantic partner, a parent, or a best friend, in this treatment two people embark on a journey together integrating ketamine and therapy to transform old patterns, reduce defensiveness, increase openness, improve communication, and cultivate deeper connection and understanding.

Ketamine-Assisted Therapy Retreats

We also offer Ketamine-Assisted Retreats in beautiful, relaxing locations. These week-long retreats allow you to slow down and focus on yourself and your mental health in a supportive and healing group environment. 

Find out more about our Ketamine-Assisted Retreats

journaling in a hammok

Ketamine Testimonials

“Ketamine catalyzed deep insight, and profound emotional processing for me. With ketamine, I could still choose to pursue whatever therapeutic goal I wanted. Ketamine just made each therapy session so much more effective – in my experience, maybe five or even ten times over.”  Bernardo G

“Ketamine therapy put to bed an underlying grief issue I carried around with me for many years and didn’t know it. In addition to that, I found  clarity on all sorts of other things that ultimately changed my life’s trajectory. The team at Wholeness created an environment that supported my ability to accept the changes I need to make” Peter J

Throughout my life I have tried various kinds of anxiety and depression treatments with not a lot of luck. On the recommendation of the Wholeness Center I did Ketamine therapy while on a wellness retreat. I did 3 treatments total during this retreat. Between the setting and the supervised treatments I have found more relief than years of antidepressants and counseling. While it only took me 3 treatments to feel better I know others need more but for me Ketamine was a life changer and a life saver. Thank you to the doctors at the Wholeness Center for creating a safe environment for treatment. I have recommended Ketamine therapy to many people. I highly encourage anyone who is feeling discouraged with other treatments to consider this therapy. “  Nicole J