*The FDA has not approved intravenous ketamine or NAD+ for the treatment of any psychiatric or pain condition. These articles reference off-label use. Like all medical treatments, the discussed therapies carry risks and benefits. Speak with a doctor at Clarus Health to learn if these therapies may be right for you.

Ketamine Therapy
Jan 11, 2024

Ketamine Therapy for Anxiety

Can Ketamine Therapy Relieve Refractory Anxiety? Learn More

Ketamine Therapy for Anxiety

Ketamine therapy is a powerful treatment for resistant depression, PTSD, addiction, and chronic pain. These conditions are rarely siloed from anxiety, and IV Ketamine Therapy can help anxiety, but the duration of relief depends on how the Ketamine is administered.

Refractory Anxiety: Standard Medications Don't Help

Refractory anxiety is when standard medications and therapies don't adequately relieve symptoms. It is also called treatment resistant anxiety. Fortunately, multiple studies have shown IV Ketamine at higher doses can provide sustained relief.

Ketamine for Anxiety: IV, nasal, oral, or injection?

Ketamine comes in multiple different forms. Most studies have looked at IV Ketamine Infusions because IV is the most direct and targeted form of Ketamine therapy for anxiety. Cognitive flexibility is key to addressing anxiety at the root cause, and IV Ketamine is a powerful inducer of cognitive flexibility.

Cognitive flexibility allows for tolerance of ambiguity, a key part to holistic anxiety treatment

In treating anxiety IV Ketamine has key benefits compared to oral, nasal, and muscular injections:

The doses of Ketamine that provide anxiety relief are sometimes higher than what can be taken orally. This is an important reason why IV Ketamine infusions are so effective for anxiety.

Ketamine, Anxiety, and Tolerance of Ambiguity

When we cannot tolerate ambiguity, our brain and body becomes rigid. This rigidity, called cognitive rigidity, underlies anxiety in many of our patients.

Ketamine causes profound neuroplasticity in our brain. Neuroplasticity refers to the physical "rewiring" of the brain's thought patterns. When we become "stuck" in anxious and depressive thoughts there is a need to "rewire" these stuck patterns with neuroplasticity.

Ketamine therapy for anxiety supports this neuroplasticity to address the root causes of anxiety. This "rewiring" can support cognitive flexibility to break free of anxiety loops. Sometimes the anxiety symptoms will recur after several weeks, but they are not as severe as before treatment.

Where Ketamine Reduces Anxiety in the Brain

The right, frontal lobe of the brain appears active in patients with anxiety. Specifically, nerve activity at a frequency called "theta" in the right frontal lobe appears correlated to anxiety. IV Ketamine reduces "theta activity" in the right frontal lobe and correlates with improvements in anxiety symptoms. This helps explain why Ketamine therapy for anxiety is so effective.

IV Ketamine For Anxiety Has Other Benefits

Anxiety rarely occurs in isolation. Depression and anxiety are closely related because they share the same "stuck" root causes. When we are "stuck" ruminating over the past, we call that depression. When we are "stuck" ruminating over the future, we call that anxiety. These conditions typically occur with irritability, panic, and agitation. IV Ketamine also reduces these symptoms while treating anxiety at the root cause.

Learn More About Healing Your Anxiety

Your comfort with your doctor providing IV Ketamine is critical to how effective your therapy is. You deserve to find your healing potential. Schedule a free consultation with Clarus Health to learn if IV Ketamine Therapy may be effective in treating your anxiety.

Anthony Kaveh MD

Anthony Kaveh MD

Dr. Kaveh is a Stanford and Harvard-trained anesthesiologist and integrative medicine specialist. He has over 800,000 followers on social media and has guided hundreds of patients throughout transformative healing experiences. He is an authority on Ketamine, NAD, and SGB therapies. He is a registered continuing education lecturer in the Bay Area.