Treating Postpartum Depression with Ketamine Therapy

Treating Postpartum Depression with Ketamine Therapy

Postpartum Depression is a common and serious illness. 1 in 8 women with a recent live birth will experience symptoms of postpartum depression. Fortunately, postpartum depression is treatable. Ketamine is a safe and effective treatment with most people getting better in as little as 1-3 treatments.

What is Postpartum Depression?

After birth, it is common for your mood to shift up and down. These feelings are often referred to as the “baby blues.” Postpartum depression differs because these feelings last longer, are more intense and may cause a mother to feel like she cannot handle daily activities. Unlike the “baby blues” that go away after a few weeks, postpartum depression typically needs treatment by a medical professional. Postpartum depression is more common in women that already have a depression or a history of depression or were depressed during their pregnancy and can last up to one year after giving birth.

How often postpartum depression symptoms occur, how long they last, and how intense they feel can be different for each person.

Symptoms of Postpartum Depression can include:

  • Crying more often than usual.
  • Feelings of anger.
  • Withdrawing from loved ones.
  • Feeling numb or disconnected from your baby.
  • Worrying that you will hurt the baby.
  • Feeling guilty about not being a good mom or doubting your ability to care for the baby.

How Ketamine Works to Treat Depression

In 2019, the National Institutes of Health conducted a study of 654 women who gave birth by Caesarean section. During this study, researchers found that ketamine IV infusions administered shortly following delivery reduced postpartum depression symptoms significantly. These results were particularly successful in new moms showing signs of depression or stress before they gave birth, or who were at a high risk of committing suicide following.

It is common for new mothers with a diagnosis for postpartum depression to be prescribed SSRIs (Selective Serotonin Reuptake Inhibitors). However, these medications can take several weeks to months to work with many side effects. If you have severe postpartum depression, you may need relief much sooner, especially if you are stressed with the everyday pressures of caring for a newborn.

Ketamine infusion therapy is a safe and highly effective treatment for women suffering from postpartum depression. Most women feel significant symptom relief and improvement within 1-3 sessions.

Ketamine and Breastfeeding 

Even though more and more data is starting to show that breastfeeding after a single session of ketamine is relatively safe, it is still recommended to avoid breast feeding for a minimum of 6-12 hours. You should pump prior to the therapy followed by “pump-and-dump” for the next 24 hours followed by regular feedings. We recommend consulting with your personal healthcare provider prior to the therapy treatment. 

The Ketamine Therapy Process

At Altnerativ Total Wellness, we will develop a personalized plan that meets your needs. We will take the time to not only get to know you as an individual and understand your condition but also learn the challenges you have faced. The speed at which ketamine works to help alleviate symptoms are particularly useful for women who are suffering from postpartum depression. According to research conducted at Weill Cornell Medicine in New York, ketamine works in a two-step process that begins with the brain’s circuits experiencing repair from depression. The next step involves a regeneration process that must be maintained with additional infusions. Otherwise, the effects of the treatment begin to wear off, and relapse could occur. Your consultation will involve going over a checklist regarding when your symptoms began, how ketamine can help relieve them and how many treatments you will need.

Ketamine Treatment for Postpartum Depression in South Jersey

Postpartum depression can be debilitating for mothers of newborns. Ketamine therapy is a very promising alternative to traditional antidepressants. Quick-acting and administered intermittently, ketamine may be more conducive to allowing mothers who breastfeed to continue to do so as the period of “pumping-and-dumping” is limited.

Our experts are here to answer any questions you have and to help you improve the quality of your life. For a consultation regarding ketamine therapy in South Jersey, contact us at (856) 334-0080.