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Your Nose Knows!

June 08, 2022
Rachel E. Norris, MD
Dr. Norris

Did you know that you can’t dissociate from your sense of smell? While all other senses may be altered, your sense of smell remains intact during a ketamine treatment. Our oldest sense, olfaction, cannot be blocked! Taking advantage of this fact can potentially even enhance the ketamine experience by incorporating aromatherapy. 
 
Essential oils work on the limbic system, part of the brain that plays a role in long-term memory, emotions and behaviors. They can help with recall as well as mood. We utilize a number of essential oils for those clients who would like to incorporate them on their journey. While there are literally a hundred oils we could choose from, we like to focus on a handful that are familiar to most
everyone and invoke very specific effects that can be useful when embarking on a dissociative or psychedelic trek: 
 
Lavender – one of the most widely used essential oils, it is used to relieve stress and instill calm
Eucalyptus – can soothe the mind and reduce anxiety while also energizing the body
Sandalwood – an earthy scent that can help with grounding and focus
Frankincense – may help with mood by evoking a sense of peace and wellness
Grapefruit – bright and uplifting, grapefruit is great for balancing your mood
 
Even though each scent can produce specific effects, the most important thing is to choose one that resonates best with you. Peppermint and ginger oils can also be found on our cart as gently inhaling them can help with nausea which some people may experience with their treatments. They allow us to incorporate nonpharmacologic ways to combat side effects of ketamine. 
 
So, the next time you come in don’t forget about your nose!