Teen Ketamine Addiction

Ketamine is a popular drug often used at teen parties, and known as K, Special K or Vitamin K. It provides the user with a strong feeling of detachment from the body. It comes in the form of a white powder, liquid or pills. It is also referred to as the “date rape drug”. Its effects are extremely unpredictable, often causing hallucinations, temporary paralysis, and reduced sensations. It enhances the effects of lights, makes the music a little louder, and provides a high for the partying teenagers.

Signs and Symptoms

Ketamine blocks the sensation of pain. It also causes slow physical movements, slurred speech and a confused appearance. Ketamine symptoms are very much like those of alcohol abuse and include feelings of detachment, disoriented state, hallucinations, difficulty breathing, mood swings, profuse sweating, depression, jitters, rising body temperature, nausea, impaired memory, and inability to think.

Effects of Ketamine

Ketamine was developed as an alternative to Phencyclidine (PCP), but its side effects were found to be lethal (particularly when mixed with other drugs or alcohol). Nevertheless, according to reports, it was taken by more than half a million people between 18 to 25 years of age. The reason for its widespread use despite its lethal effects is that Ketamine tends to act fast, particularly when it is injected or snorted by teens. Its popularity at parties is high particularly because the effects of a high are felt quite soon after ingesting.

Prolonged use of Ketamine can be very dangerous. It adversely affects many areas of the body. It frequently causes severe abdominal pain and the Ketamine user may cause self-hurt, but feel no obvious pain, as if nothing has happened. Ketamine causes harm to the urinary bladder and urinary tract. It may cause blood secretion in urine and ulcers in the bladder. Prolonged use of ketamine can result in amnesia, abnormal heart rhythms, visual problems, and skin rashes at the site of the injection. Usually found in a powder form, the drug is mostly sniffed after mixing it with other drugs or alcohol. There is always risk of overdose

Ketamine Withdrawal

Withdrawal symptoms generally last for 4-6 days after the last drug use. The withdrawal symptoms are flu-like, such as chills, fatigue, lethargy, severe cravings, nightmares, bouts of depression, profuse sweating, muscle stiffness, dilated pupils, and involuntary eye movements. A detoxification program under expert medical supervision to ensure regular monitoring can comfort and assist the patient to manage the withdrawal symptoms more easily.


Individual Therapy: This therapy helps the patient express the reasons for his/her ketamine abuse. Talking through ways to manage these feelings and actions during individual therapy sessions helps the teenager exercise self-control and provides emotional stability.

Group Therapy: These are weekly meetings, similar to those of Narcotics Anonymous or Alcoholics Anonymous. Group therapy helps to provide support and encouragement within a group setting where objective feedback from group members can be expressed in a safe space to allow for more innovative problem solving and heightened insight that one may not be able to achieve alone in individual therapy. The membership requirement is that the patient must have been recently using drugs actively. Group therapy for Ketamine addiction will usually implement a 12-step program that helps to improve self-esteem, self-worth, and self-confidence. The individual is encouraged through spirituality, prayer and faith to turn the addiction over to the higher power to remain drug free.

Family therapy: Family therapy is required for families of teen addicts that suffer anxiety with the addict during periods of his/her addiction. Family therapy is very important both for the family members (to strengthen them etc) as well as for the addict because the family may have inadvertently condoned the undesirable activity of the addict, while having accepted their fate and abandoning all hope for change. Family therapy enables the family to learn how to give all possible encouragement to the addict to help him recover quickly and completely, while at the same time receiving the healthy support themselves so that they are not depleted in their support of the addict.

Treatment at Hillcrest

Hillcrest Adolescent Treatment Center (Hillcrest) is uniquely situated and designed to provide and nurture healing on all levels. As an elegant green rehabilitation oasis in the Agoura foothills, Hillcrest aims to cater to each client’s physical, emotional, mental, psychological and nutritional needs, specifically through individualized and diverse treatment plans. Hillcrest focuses on the key principles of mind-body health and provides wholesome healing in a mostly unplugged and small group environment.

Upon admission, each client is provided with the opportunity to undergo a series of professional evaluations in order to understand the root of the client’s struggle. Guided by dedicated doctoral-level practitioners, the best resources are then gathered to pave a clear treatment path for each client using bespoke, multi-disciplined therapeutic treatment plans. Hillcrest aims to provide the highest level of professional care and provide the client with an excellent, well-balanced and well-rounded experience while being treated at the facility, as well as the adequate tools to function independently and responsibly post treatment. At Hillcrest, you are your loved one are supported every step of the way on this journey to long-lasting and sustained healing.

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