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Ketamine gaining popularity for depression therapy and addiction recovery

Medical professionals call it ‘off-label’ prescription when using Ketamine to gain ground on addiction and depression. It may seem counter-intuitive to use an often-abused drug, ketamine, to conquer a mood disorder – or especially treat addiction to other drugs. First, there has to be an understanding of the properties of ketamine to reduce the stigma of the drug and grasp the prescribing environment. Off-label uses of drugs are uses that are not approved by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA). Ketamine is, by label, an anesthetic developed in the 1960’s. It’s a Schedule III drug approved for hospital use in liquid or powder form. It was created for use in the Vietnam War to operate on or treat injuries on the front line. It acts fast to dull pain. Shedding the s...

Look What Dragged the Cat In: the rise of an opioid crisis

Excerpted from the 2018 book, Look What Dragged the Cat In, available October 2018 The decade of the 2010’s shelled hospitals and first responders with an explosion of opioid-related illness, injury, and death. Preventable drug overdoses tallied 54,793 lives lost in 2016 – an increase of 391 percent since 1999. Accidental drug overdose deaths increased 327 percent over the same period. The majority of OD deaths (38,000) involve opioids, The drug category most frequently involved in opioid overdoses and growing at the fastest pace includes fentanyl, fentanyl analogs, and tramadol. The fentanyl category of opioids accounted for nearly half of opioid-related deaths. The dirty cat in the litter, heroin, accounted for the second highest number of deaths, claiming 14,606 lives. America str...

Dealing with Migraines and Other Forms of Chronic Pain

To say dealing with migraines and other types of chronic pain is challenging is an understatement. The challenges of chronic pain and migraines could be magnified by how you handle stressful situations. Stress is one of the leading causes of migraines and chronic pain causes more stress, which is a vicious cycle that can go on and on. What Are the Symptoms of a Migraine? A migraine headache can result in throbbing pain or a pulsing sensation, usually it’s localized to one side of the head. It’s often accompanied by nausea, extreme sensitivity to light, smells and sound and sometimes vomiting. An attack from a migraine can last for several hours or even days and it can be so painful, it’s disabling. A migraine can bring warning signs with it and it’s known as an “aura,” which happens before...

Although the war is over, you’re still battling PTSD

Surviving PTSD: You Can Win the Battle Post-traumatic stress disorder is something that develops in some people who have experienced a shocking, dangerous or life-threatening event, such as combat, a natural disaster, car accident, domestic violence, threats made against one’s life or sexual assault. It’s very normal to have upsetting memories of something traumatic or to lose sleep after having something upsetting happen, but PTSD is much more than bad memories and anxiety. What Determines Who Will Suffer from PTSD? Post-traumatic stress disorder can happen to anybody, and it’s not a sign of weakness or a character flaw. Several different things can increase the chances someone will develop PTSD, many of which a person cannot control. Personal issues, like previous exposure to trauma, age...

Just Sad or Suffering with Clinical Depression?

Are You Clinically Depressed or Just Moody? Depression can range from serious to mild, temporary episodes of sadness and severe, unrelenting depression. Clinical depression is the most severe type of depression and it is also known as major depression or major depressive disorder. Clinical depression is not the same thing as being depressed over the death of a loved one, or a medical issue or thyroid disorder, it’s much deeper and more profound than most realize. How is Clinical Depression Diagnosed? To properly diagnose clinical depression, many physicians will refer to the symptom criteria for major depressive disorder in the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders, which is published by the American Psychiatric Association. The signs and symptoms of clinical depression can...

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