All About Ketamine

What is Ketamine and what does it do?

Ketamine has been around since 1956 and has been used in a variety of settings in healthcare. The medication has been used as an anesthetic, pain reliever, and has even been used in veterinary offices for these purposes in animals.  Ketamine has been used on the battlefield and its mental health effects were noticed during the Korean war when soldiers who had undergone small procedures with ketamine had less PTSD, depression, and anxiety.   The medicine has been researched and studied and results indicate ketamine has many different components and mechanisms of action inside the brain. These broad modalities enable this drug to be used in many areas of mental health, and are potentiated when therapy can be combined. Some of ketamine's mechanisms work on the following brain structures:

Ketamine is known as a NMDA receptor antagonist. When blocking the NMDA receptors, the brain makes more of the excitatory neurotransmitter called glutamate. Many recent studies have verified, not only do low serotonin levels play a vital role in depression, but also glutamate. The quick increase of glutamate can boost a patient's moods quickly and motivates dormant neurons to re-open to begin working again.

Ketamine turns off a specialized part of the brain called the lateral habenula, which is also called the anti-reward center. This is why it can be beneficial using ketamine with therapy, as this mechanism allows easier processing in therapy and gives permission for the patient to talk about difficult emotions too scary to bring up in previous sessions. It reduces the amount of reactivity in the brain for difficult emotions and allows patients to get further in their healing journey.

Ketamine puts a blockade between the brain structures of the limbic system and cerebral cortex, causing a temporary break in automatic thinking patterns. Initiating the break in negative cyclical thoughts can help reboot or reset the brain and can move patients away from negative thinking patterns towards neutral or more positive thoughts.

Ketamine works on BDNF or brain-derived neurotrophic factor, which initiates the growth of new neurons and connections between neurons. Patient's will begin making new pathways in their brain and will restore the ones that have been damaged due to years of depression and anxiety.

Ketamine allows the patient to see their life from a different perspective. Seeing from a new view can help patient's see where they might be stuck and can reveal how they can heal. Ketamine can create and enable self-revelation on modalities to move towards acceptance or help patients understand how they can move forward and remove barriers.

What does Ketamine feel like?

Ketamine has many effects on brain structures, but the medication can also cause a profound and transformative experience while receiving the medication. During the psychedelic experience, many patients have an altered state of mind or are in a dream-like state which can be emotional and powerful.

The ketamine experience can be anywhere from dark and boring to colorful and euphoric, depending on the individual.. Patient's who can trust or submit to the ketamine experience often come out of their session with a deeper sense of self and wellbeing. Patients are able to see their experience as the one they are needing at the time. Our staff can help support and comfort you if your experience is intense and you need help moving through it.

Patients have described ketamine as helping them have a deeper connection with god, higher being, or the universe. Patient's have described visions and can sometimes experience a replay of memories. Ketamine can also alter sense of time and future, provide out-of-body experiences, and can release deep emotions, altering a sense of self. Ketamine can also initiate a separation from worries and insecurities and promote trust in self and others.

Preparation before ketamine:

Prepare the Body

It is important to follow these guidelines to ensure safety and gain the maximum benefit from your ketamine treatments.

No alcohol or Cannabis or other substances 48-hours before treatment.

Medication taken 72 hours before and right after treatment MUST be cleared with the team.

We recommend you bring attention to your meals several days prior to your sessions, in a way that feels healthful and nutritious to your unique body.

No coffee, tea, or caffeinated beverages 4 hours before treatment.

No food 4 hours before treatment.

No beverages 2 hours before treatment.

Wear comfortable clothes that you can relax in.

Be on time and if you have to reschedule you will require 24 hours notice.

You may bring a supportive person with you if you feel nervous, but please discuss this with your therapist/provider prior to your journey.

Prepare the Mind

It is typical to feel like your mind is separated from your body while you are on ketamine, for about half an hour up to an hour, depending on how ketamine is administered for you. There may be a variety of physical sensations and or visual effects with sound, light, and or images you may experience. Ketamine has been described as emotionally evocative for some. Often the body feels relaxed and immobile during the session.

Prepare the Spirit

Be open to what the medicine may show you by creating a safety net in your mind that you are safe and trusting of the ketamine experience. You can do your best to trust the medication will show you what you need to heal.  The more you can trust and let go, usually the more meaningful the experience.

Set an Intention. Intention setting can enhance mystical experiences, helps one feel prepared, and is an essential part of the ketamine assisted psychotherapy experience at The Journey Within. Clear intentions revolve around the question of "How do I wish to be different from this experience or what changes am I wanting to make?”

 Questions to Guide Your Intention Setting: If you’re struggling to figure out what intention might be right for you as you approach a session, you can try asking yourself the following questions:

What’s holding me back in my life?

What would I like to change about my life?

What am I afraid of?

Where does this fear come from and how does it impact me?

What does a joyful life look like for me? 

What do I want to change moving forward in my life?

What does my higher self need and want?

Intentions should be clear and specific and should focus on positive transformation and growth. Writing out these intentions prior to the session is an important step in solidifying this framework that will guide the experience and journey and promote maximum therapeutic growth and healing.

“An intention is our purpose, an internal alignment we are connecting to”. This intention will support your experience in moments that feel difficult or scary. We set an intention while remaining open to what the medicine

offers you. Finally, before your session, try to release and surrender any preconceived notions, expectations, and fears you may hold. Trust the process, and be open and accepting to whatever emotions and sensations you encounter during your experience.

Before and after your session:

Avoid conflict with others. Ask your loved ones and/or partner(s) to be sensitive to your emotional state before and after your journey. Have someone drive you to your session that you know can hold a safe, supportive, conflict-free space for your journey. Take time for yourself in the days before your session and get extra rest. Resist overscheduling yourself. Take time to meditate, journal, and relax before your session. We recommend taking at least 2 hours after work to rest and transition before arriving for treatment (if possible).Identify a mantra that you can utilize to calm your mind during your treatment.

You may bring items to create a supportive altar that connects you to yourself, your guides, ancestors, and loved ones. These can be photos of family members and pets, stones, small statues, natural items, or anything else that helps connect you to spirit.Ketamine treatments can bring on a deeply emotional experience. It is normal and natural to feel your emotions strongly and want to express them (anger, grief, crying, etc.). This can be a positive experience and a natural part of the healing process.

If you are feeling nervous, remember the following….

Stay Curious: It is natural to feel anxious, nervous, or have doubt, even if you have had psychedelics before. If this occurs, try to stay curious as to what arises instead of being fearful. Either way, you will not be alone. You will have a provider with you who will support your needs as they arise.

Honor your inner Healing: Ketamine can be different from other psychedelics in that it allows one to go within-and work with your own inner healing intelligence, which is guided by the music and therapy. Ketamine Therapy takes time: Unlike other psychedelics, ketamine works in stages and over time. A single session of medicine can be profound for some and for others a beginning.

Integration is vital: Ketamine by itself is useful BUT your post-ketamine integration is a key part of treatment. It is very important to process your ketamine session with Therapy.  We recommend you start with KAT (Ketamine assisted Psychotherapy), or use your own therapist with a session within 24-48 hours of your ketamine experience.    

Your work with therapy will allow you to integrate your experience into your life and practices.  We will give you journal prompts to document your experience that can be helpful during your therapy session for further processing and integration. There is no such thing as a “bad trip”.  “Psychedelics can be non-specific amplifiers.”

It is important to remember that difficult experiences are not bad experiences.. If this feeling of challenge is felt it can often have insight. Your therapist/provider can help guide you through it during, right after and or in your integration. When you welcome very challenging psychological and physical experiences during a KAP session, these very same experiences can lead to deeper healing and integration. Suppressed thought and emotions can have a safe place to be observed and processed.

During the treatment:

We will provide a comfortable reclining chair, music, headphones, blindfold, and a blanket if needed. We will also provide a quiet, dark, and distraction free environment where you will be monitored by our medical staff. We will also offer you an anti nausea medication before the session. We will monitor vitals signs before, sometimes during, and then after the treatment. We will do our best to make the ketamine experience the best it can be while you receive this multimodal medication in a safe and therapeutic environment!

Client Testimonials

I felt extremely safe receiving my ketamine treatments at the Journey Within. The support I received therapeutically took my experience to a new level."

Previous KAT patient (ketamine assisted therapy)

PTSD, first responder

I know the values I was able to move towards during my ketamine sessions will serve me for the rest of my life." I am so happy I chose to pursue ketamine with therapy".

Previous ketamine only patient

Severe depression and anxiety

Our Mission

Our goal is to help guide you through your personal Journey Within, moving you towards healing, acceptance, and relief.

Treatments Available for:

  • Major Depressive Disorder

  • Treatment Resistant Depression

  • Post-Partum Depression

  • Anxiety

  • Suicidal Ideation

  • PTSD/Trauma

Accepted Insurance:

  • Select Health (except Signature network)

  • PEHP

  • United Healthcare

  • UMR

  • Blue Cross Blue Shield

  • Aetna

Pricing List

New Client

Ketamine Consultation


Medication Management or Holistic Treatment Consultation


Psychotherapy Consultation


Vitamin IV Therapy Consultation


Existing Client

Follow up visit


Ketamine IM (90 minute)


Ketamine IV (90 minute)


Ketamine Assisted Psychotherapy IM (2 hours)


Ketamine Assisted Psychotherapy IV (2 hours)




30 min


45 min


60 minute


Vitamin IV (60 minute)


Vitamin injection (10 minute)


First Responders/Emergency Personnel

First Responder Ketamine IM


First Responder Ketamine IV


Ketamine Packages

6 sessions IM


6 sessions IV


6 session IM and IV w/assisted therapy (2 hours)


  • Save $30 with one of our packages that includes ketamine, workbook, and a service by one of our facilitators!

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FAX (231) 216-7963

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