Ketamine can provide rapid and remarkable benefits which can be sustained with periodic maintenance infusions plus a comprehensive treatment plan. That’s where Facilitated Treatment Support comes in.
Think of it like this: “If doctors replace your knee but don’t provide for physical therapy you may not walk again” Dr. Cristina Cusin, professor of psychiatry, Harvard Medical School.
We talked with our expert Health & Wellness Coordinator to help demystify treatment support and answer real questions from real patients.
Q: What is Facilitated Treatment Support (FTS)?
A: Simply put FTS is a program that supports you with a proven strategy of individual coaching and guided self-coaching so you can set and, more importantly, reach your goals for sustainable healthier behaviors and mental wellness.
Q: Why is FTS a good idea?
A: Neuroscience tells us that ketamine repairs and improves connections in the brain that have been damaged by serious depression and mood disorders. At the same time, ketamine builds new healthy connections (neuroplasticity). This happens almost immediately to reverse the effects of damage. But if ketamine therapy is discontinued with no ongoing support strategies, the damage may reappear over time. This is where KWC’s Facilitated Treatment Support (FTS) can make a huge difference. As long as those new brain pathways are opened up you have a window of opportunity to develop resiliency and learn new coping strategies that can help protect you and keep you out of the cycle of returning symptoms.
“I have been given a second chance at life, along with new opportunities to seek happiness. I am so grateful to this treatment and the knowledgeable staff that has been supportive through this amazing transition.”Craig C.
Q: How does Facilitated Treatment Support Work?
A: FTS can support you while you are receiving your first course of treatments. This course is known as “stabilization”. Typically, stabilization involves 4 to 6 treatments over 10 to 14 days which can vary by patient and by the initial severity of symptoms. FTS can also follow with you into subsequent, less frequent treatments called “maintenance” treatments. Your FTS counselor helps you understand and optimize the effects you feel from your treatments. At the same time, you and your counselor may work through any challenges you are currently dealing with and move past roadblocks standing between you and healthy thoughts and habits.
Q: What can I expect from FTS?
A: The FTS program is a series of six, one-on-one telehealth sessions with an expert Health and Wellness Coordinator. These 30-minute counseling meetings are personalized to fit you exactly. This allows you to work together and shape the program to meet your specific needs. The series also has a specialized companion workbook for you to use during and after each session.
Areas covered often include:
- Using treatments to help you recover from past trauma and move forward with your life.
- Guidelines and guard rails: how positive reinforcements keep you on track.
- “What’s next?”: the journey from feeling stuck to feeling better.
- Identifying negative thoughts and reframing them into a new purposeful confidence.
“Such a great class. Thank you so much! She gave me encouragement, and I ran with it.”Ginger R.
Q: Who benefits the most from FTS?
A: I truly believe everyone can benefit from FTS. While most experts agree on the value of this approach few if any, ketamine infusion clinics are committed to providing this type of holistic support to their patients. I’m often asked if FTS is all that important if a patient already has an outside therapist, great support systems, and a healthy lifestyle? The answer is a simple yes. FTS is a specialized program, it is specific to the understanding, benefits, and experience of ketamine therapy. I know from my work in public health and patient coaching that patient involvement and shared decision-making and accountability are keys to success for better patient-centered outcomes.
There are three situations when I would absolutely urge patients to take part.
- Those who do not currently have a therapist, psychologist, or meaningful support system.
- Those who are struggling with stress and feeling overwhelmed.
- Those who have developed negative coping techniques that are damaging themselves and the people around them.
Q: How does FTS make a difference to my treatment?
A: FTS complements and strengthens your ketamine therapy. There’s a lot to learn as you finally start to truly manage depression anxiety, PTSD, OCD, etc.
Mind-stillness techniques include ways to still your mind, relax your body and be present in the moment for times you are feeling anxious, frustrated, or overwhelmed.
Techniques to discover self-awareness of your thoughts and your actions. It is the small things that we do every day that can impact our lives either positively or negatively and many of us do not even realize we are doing these things!
Identifying our values and focusing on areas where we may be lacking by making goals around those areas.
Reframing negative thoughts that cause worry, self-doubt, and unnecessary stress.
How to use journaling and writing prompts to gain insight into our struggles and challenges.
Q: Is it worth it?
A: I hope I have described how important FTS can be to sustaining the positive effects of your ketamine therapy. Ketamine infusion therapy alone can have remarkable results, and when part of a fully comprehensive care plan it can be life-changing. The three hours of private sessions and the companion workbook cost $150. We feel so strongly about value-based patient care we do everything we possibly can to keep individualized FTS programs available and affordable to all.
“I also love all of the patient support they provide. Everything about my experience with them has been wonderful. Total patient care and life-changing treatments”.Angela K.
Q: How do I get started
A: I absolutely encourage you to call or email me directly so we can walk through your questions together.
Or you can reach me at your convenience and also schedule a complimentary 15-minute consultation through our web page.
Sonia Cardenas is the Health and Wellness Coordinator for Ketamine Wellness Centers (KWC). Sonia has 19 years of healthcare experience and is currently completing her Master’s in Psychology at the University of Arizona GC. As Health and Wellness Coordinator Sonia heads up the unique KWC Facilitated Treatment Support program. Sonia works one-on-one with ketamine patients to track and fully support their continued healing and remission through individual coaching and counseling. Her experience, expertise, and passion for a personalized holistic approach to wellness make truly sustainable differences in patients’ lives. Whenever she is not working with patients you’ll find Sonia spending time with her son, family, and friends, traveling, being outdoors, or relaxing with a good book.