Mental Health Treatment is an evolving field that is experiencing significant changes due to innovations in medical science. One of the most ground-breaking therapies that have recently improved treatment potency is esketamine therapy. Unlike other fancy drug therapies that are a spinoff of existing treatments, esketamine therapy is truly revolutionary in every sense of the word. Due to its impact on the human mind, patients and doctors have great expectations from the new therapy.
What can be Expected from Esketamine Therapy?
Depression has always remained a complex disease to treat for mental health professionals. Most of the existing treatment options through various drugs increase neurotransmitters such as dopamine, serotonin, and norepinephrine, which can cause serious side effects. Even ketamine, which forms the basis of the new drug, can have acute side effects because it needs to be taken in large quantities. However, esketamine is very potent and works even when administered in lower doses. Hence, the side effects are relatively lower when it is used for treatment.
The anticipation around esketamine has also grown because of its potential to treat people who are resistant to existing treatment options using Citalopram (Celexa), Escitalopram (Lexapro), Fluoxetine (Prozac), Paroxetine (Paxil) and Sertraline (Zoloft). So, it is a much-awaited solution for people who are struggling to get on with their lives because of untreatable depression.
Who Should Take Esketamine?
In medical terms, if you’ve used at least two other antidepressants (for a minimum of six weeks each) and haven’t experienced any sort of remission or 50% improvement in mood, you have treatment-resistant depression. Esketamine is recommended for those patients who have treatment-resistant depression. Esketamine provides a ray of hope to those struggling with depression and allows them to get back to their normal lives completely free of depression.
The Clear Benefits of Using Esketamine Over Other Drugs
Esketamine has a superior treatment mechanism
The drugs that treat depression work on the principle that if we can increase the number of neurotransmitters, we can improve the communication between brain cells, enhance brain activity and alleviate depression. However, most of the drugs target serotonin and dopamine, which are considerably fewer in numbers than glutamate, a chemical messenger in our brain.
As esketamine targets glutamate and increases its numbers, it has a more significant impact on a patient’s mental health condition.
Esketamine stops a patient from contemplating suicide
Many depression patients are likely to think about suicide while undergoing treatment through other medicines. However, when treated with esketamine, the data suggests that patients are less likely to have suicidal thoughts. Therefore, it is a better treatment option for many depression patients.
As mentioned before, many depression patients do not respond to regular depression treatment (almost 33%). However, esketamine is known to work for these people. Although many other drugs like fluoxetine and olanzapine (in combination) are known to work for depression-resistant patients, they have long-term side effects like obesity and high blood pressure. On the other hand, esketamine does not have such side effects and has a slightly higher success rate.
Prevention from dementia
Do you know that our hippocampus shrinks when we experience excessive stress during depression? Over the long term, extreme stress can cause dementia, which is a debilitating disease much worse than depression. But by treating depression at the right time with esketamine, it is possible to overcome the threat of dementia.
Esketamine is more than a preventive drug
Apart from preventing the neurotoxic effects of depression, esketamine is extremely good at promoting brain health. Therefore, it is not just a preventive drug but a medical treatment that helps a brain evolve into a better version of itself.
Esketamine is convenient to use
Esketamine can be ingested nasally in the form of nasal drops. Due to its low dosage and method of intake, it is far more convenient to use than other drugs.
How to Use Esketamine Safely?
Although esketamine has overall positive effects on the health of a depressed patient, it can induce specific side effects. Therefore, it needs to be taken under medical supervision. Below are certain side effects of esketamine:
- Increased blood pressure
- Feeling drunk
The side effects peak after 40 minutes of taking esketamine and wear off within 2 hours for most patients.
Esketamine therapy is a godsend for many depression patients who exhibit resistance to this mental illness. Esketamine is known to work better than most other drugs; however, it is strongly advised that you take it under medical supervision. Top rehabs use esketamine therapy during the rehabilitation programme and provide a great way to recover.