Ketamine addiction and dependency are serious issues, and should be taken seriously.
Initially developed in 1962 as a viable alternative for the anesthetic Phencyclidine (PCP), which often resulted in adverse effects such as seizure and hallucination, Ketamine has since become similarly disused, though it still does not have the Schedule 1 Classification of PCP. After initial use on the battlefield in Vietnam as an anesthetic, it became shortly popular in American medical use. However, as possible side effects arose, the drug has become much less prevalent.
Still used today, largely by veterinarians and still on the battlefield because of its powerful and quick effect, Ketamine doesn’t enjoy much other use, except for the misuse by those who purposefully instigate such effects on themselves.
As of 1999, the drug was listed on the United States’ Schedule III list of controlled substances. The drug’s effects, discovered and published largely in the 1960s led to its popularity as a recreational hallucinogenic. However, the hallucinogenic effects are largely secondary as the drug is originally developed and still stands as a powerful anesthetic.
While the direct hallucinogenic effects of Ketamine only last an hour or so, the drug’s effects on the body can last up to 24 hours, causing disruptions in sleep, sensory perception, and the interruption of the ability to act on and make decisions.
Furthermore, larger doses will cause a dissociative state that can cause the loss of motor function, recognition of the drug user’s name and memories. Such states can remove the feeling of self and reality and lead to bouts of depression and the slow reintegration with reality.
Because of so many possible detachments from reality, the hallucinogenic effects of Ketamine can lead to poor decisions and a dangerous lack of control over one’s surroundings. Similarly, the drug, when abused, may lead to possible lesions or vacuoles forming on the brain’s surface, known as Olney’s lesions. Overdosing on Ketamine is possible, and can often lead to fatal instances and the incapacitating effects of the drug lead to its common usage as a “date rape” drug.
Because the drug is not entirely outlawed for medical use in the United States, the supply of Ketamine is not as rare as some other illegal substances and so the abuse of it is fairly rampant in underground venues. For those attempting to recover from Ketamine addiction / dependency, it might seem like getting away is too hard and the effects are not direct enough to force an abuser to step back. But the long term negative effects and short term loss of control of ketamine dependency are substantial enough reasons to seek help.
Like any drug, over use of Ketamine leads to dependency, addiction, and the eventual damage of the human body. With the effects of the drug running through the body, decision making is impaired and it may be hard to quit, but there are many resources available to getting past it. More than just stopping, addicts of Ketamine might find it necessary to seek professional help in rehab or through their families, but the good news is that such help is always available for those willing to merely ask.
If you or someone you love suffers from ketamine addiction / dependency, seek expert help right away.