Ketamine-Assisted Therapy for Mental Health and Addiction

addiction

What is Ketamine-Assisted Therapy?

In our clinics, we deliver Ketamine-Assisted Therapy, a type of Psychedelic therapy that we use as a treatment for mental health and addiction. This approach combines talking therapy with sessions assisted by psychedelics.

This combination has unique effects on the brain associated with unhelpful thinking and behavioural patterns. It may allow you to work through issues in ways that have not been possible with therapy alone and help you to relearn the behaviours and thought patterns that hold you back.

If other therapies and treatments have failed to deliver, ketamine therapy may offer the potential to create fundamental changes that deliver profound improvements to your mental health.

What do we treat?

We offer Ketamine-Assisted Therapy for five conditions:

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Addiction

The use of alcohol or drugs in a compulsive way that is excessive and harmful or hazardous to your health.

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Anxiety Disorders

A category of mental health diagnosis that leads to excessive nervousness, fear, and worry.

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Depression

A mood disorder that may be described as feelings of sadness, loss or helplessness.

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Eating Disorders

There are a few different types of eating disorders, including anorexia, bulimia and binge eating. 

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PTSD

An anxiety disorder typically develops after experiencing a traumatic, frightening or distressing event.

How Ketamine-assisted therapy works

Ketamine is an NMDA receptor antagonist, which means it acts to block the N-methyl-D-aspartate (NMDA) receptors in the brain.

At very high doses, it acts as an anaesthetic, putting you completely to sleep.

At lower doses (as we use), it creates an altered state of consciousness that, when combined with psychotherapy, allows you to carry out effective and safe treatment. 

Ketamine is understood to increase brain plasticity (flexibility) and connectivity, meaning it can help a person become more adaptive and open to new perspectives.

Our approach, using Ketamine, disrupts the brain circuits that underpin the unhelpful patterns that addiction and mental health issues cause in the brain. The Ketamine weakens the neural connections linked to harmful thought patterns and addictions, opening the door for our trained and skilled therapists to harness this flexibility and help clients develop more effective ways of responding to challenging thoughts and feelings and making lasting behavioural changes in their lives. 

Using ketamine in combination with talking therapy can facilitate psychological breakthroughs, which therapy alone can often fail to achieve.

What our clients say about our treatment

Client Quotes

Client Testimonials

What is the evidence Ketamine-Assisted Therapy works?

Alcohol Addiction

The therapy and dosing treatment delivered in our clinics for people with alcohol problems was developed and tested through Awakn’s KARE (Ketamine in the Reduction of Alcoholic Relapse) clinical trials.

These trials showed ketamine-assisted therapy delivered 86% abstinence at 6 months post-treatment, which is significantly more than the approximate 25% abstinence in the standard treatment. Trial participants also experienced a real improvement in their liver function and a large decrease in depression.

Anecdotally, many participants also reported sudden profound changes (‘like taking off my alcoholic jacket and hanging it up forever’) and ease of giving up after struggling for years. The results were published in the American Journal of Psychiatry in January 2022.

Because psychedelic-assisted therapy is effective at addressing underlying traumas that are linked to harmful repetitive thinking patterns, it presents the possibility to address a wide range of mental health issues rooted in trauma.

Depression, Anxiety, PTSD, Eating Disorders & Other Addictions

The therapy and dosing treatment delivered in our clinics for depression, anxiety, PTSD, eating disorders, and non-alcohol substance abuse has been developed by our team of world-leading researchers, drawing on both a global evidence base and decades of direct experience working as researchers and therapists in the field of psychedelics.

While many clinical trials of ketamine for the treatment of mental disorders have focused primarily on the medication itself, decades of clinical experience in this field and a growing body of real-world evidence suggest that positive and more lasting therapeutic change can be achieved by combining the treatment with carefully structured therapy before, during and after the ketamine sessions.

This combined approach helps prepare clients for their experiences, increases the likelihood of positive experiences, and helps integrate what they have been through to achieve lasting change. In this way, ketamine is used to stimulate neuroplasticity, support cognitive flexibility, and help to create the right conditions for therapy to be successful.

Over the past decade, results from clinical trials on substance use and other mental disorders have supported the approach of combining ketamine and psychotherapy to contribute therapeutically and maximise lasting, meaningful recovery to a good life.

Visit our Scientific Research page for details of clinical trial outcomes.

What is the process?

Step 1 - Self Referral & Assessment

Once you have submitted a self-referral, we will review your medical eligibility and invite you to an Initial Medical Assessment (IMA) to review your health and make sure Ketamine-Assisted Therapy is right for you.

Step 2 - Preparation

After a successful IMA, you will have two preparation sessions. This is an opportunity to discuss goals and expectations with your therapist and make sure you are prepared for the upcoming treatment stages.

Step 3 - Dosing

The core treatment phase involves four dosing sessions, each lasting approximately 120 minutes. These sessions occur in person, including a preparatory discussion, relaxation exercises, and ketamine administration via intramuscular injection. Supervised by medical professionals, dosing sessions aim to facilitate potential breakthroughs and insights.

Step 4 - Integration

Following each dosing session, you will have an integration session. These usually occur the day after dosing, focusing on your experiences during the Ketamine session. With the support of your therapist, you will explore and process insights gained during the dosing, helping you to integrate emotions and thoughts from the treatment.

Step 5 - Evaluation

This final step is an opportunity to reflect and compare pre- and post-treatment states—a chance to discuss your progress and any further treatment that may be required. 

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Why Awakn?

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You’re at the Centre
Your experiences are unique, and your support should be too. Awakn puts you at the centre of your success, with friendly professionals on hand to ensure you’re well informed at every stage, with a personalised treatment plan.

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Professional Care
Awakn’s clinical staff have extensive experience, and will be guiding your journey to recovery. We understand how impossible that path can seem, but our field leading experts are here to support your long term change. 

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Transformative Treatment

A new clinically proven approach to mental health that provides hope to those where other approaches have not worked

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Leaders in the field

Combining the expertise developed by the scientist at the heart of psychedelic research with the highest standards of care as delivered by VIA.

Are you interested in receiving the treatment?

Awakn Clinics London  
18 Dukes Road, WC1H 9PY, London, United Kingdom
Phone: +44 20 7387 2596
london.clinics@awaknclinics.co.uk 

 

 

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