TV star Sharon Osbourne has revealed she went through a traumatic time last year that led to her undergoing ketamine therapy.
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Sharon was axed from panel show The Talk after voicing her support for Piers Morgan amid his divisive comments about Meghan Markle, which resulted in Sharon receiving death threats and turning to the controversial form of therapy to help with her mental health.
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Ketamine therapy sees nurses carefully administer the Class B drug to relax the patient. "If you're a person that stuffs things [down] 'I'm fine, I'm fine,' this drug relaxes you," Sharon told The Times. "You're not out completely. You can hear, you can talk, but you're so relaxed," she says. "It's a truth drug."
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Ketamine, which was first used as an anaesthetic medicine for animals, was originally used on humans in the Vietnam War in the 1970s to treat injured soldiers, but research found it also had powerful effects against depression and suicidal thoughts, according to WebMD.
Ketamine causes a dissociation (what you'd call a "trip" on recreational drugs) which is thought to help reconnect pathways in the brain that become broken during depression. Reconnecting these pathways helps messages pass to the brain and help shift it out of depression.
Sharon Osbourne used ketamine therapy to treat her mental health issues
Ketamine can be taken medically via a nasal spray, or an IV drip, though Sharon Osbourne didn't share how she took the drug.
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Taking ketamine via a drip lasts around 40 minutes and causes the patient to appear asleep. The antidepressant powers of ketamine wear off in hours, days, or a couple weeks in people who have a single infusion, says Web MD, while a course of drips has longer-lasting effects.
According to The Guardian, ketamine therapy is available in at least six clinics in the UK, but there is "resistance to ketamine becoming a licensed medicine" on British shores, so it's unlikely to see an NHS rollout anytime soon.
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