Raquel Bennett, Psy.D. is a psychologist and a ketamine specialist from Berkeley, CA. She primarily works with people who are living with severe depression, bipolar disorder, and/or suicidal ideation. She is fascinated by the antidepressant properties of ketamine, and has been studying this for over seventeen years. She also has a long-standing interest in the psychedelic and mystical properties of ketamine, and the potential for this medicine to be used for spiritual exploration. Dr. Bennett is the founder of KRIYA Institute and the organizer of KRIYA Conference, an annual international event devoted to understanding the uses of ketamine in psychiatry and psychotherapy. You can learn more about her work at www.kriyainstitute.com.
Presentation: “Ketamine for Depression and Spiritual Exploration”
Dr. Bennett gave an overview of the field of therapeutic ketamine. Ketamine is medicine that was developed as a surgical anesthetic, but which also has rapid-acting antidepressant effects and visionary properties. She described different ways of working with ketamine, including low-dose infusions and nasal spray, ketamine-facilitated psychotherapy, and psychedelic ketamine journeys. She also spoke about which patients are appropriate for ketamine treatment and which patients would not be a good fit for this approach, according to the most current medical literature. In addition, Dr. Bennett spoke briefly about the pharmacology of ketamine and legal considerations about working with ketamine in clinical practice.