Sunbelt Wellness Institute Ketamine-Infused PTSD Clinic

Sunbelt Wellness Institute Ketamine-Infused PTSD Clinic

Jacksonville Clinic Sees Encouraging Results Now and Promise for the Future

Treatment-Resistant Mood Disorders Have New Hope in Ketamine PTSD Therapy

If the name Ketamine sounds vaguely familiar to you, you might be thinking about the street drug Special K. Yes, they’re the same thing, but in multiple trials this drug has found a new life in the most amazingly helpful way.


 Sunbelt Wellness can be reached at (904) 328-6749

Not Just for Veterans

One-third depressed people don’t benefit from traditional treatments. Luckily, with the relaxation and reclassifications of some drugs, new therapies are showing great results and greater promise. We are happy to feature a local Jacksonville treatment center, veteran run, that is living proof of the benefits for PTSD victims.

Sunbelt Wellness Institute offers a customized cost-effective treatment regimen of Ketamine Infusion therapy, for clients suffering from treatment resistant depression, bipolar depression, post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), suicidal ideations and other resistant mood disorders. This therapy has also been effective in chronic pain conditions including complex regional pain syndrome, fibromyalgia, migraines and cluster headaches.

Interview with Dr. Kalynych and Dr. Hogan


Most medications prescribed for treatment-resistant mood disorders and chronic pain work by changing the amount of specific neurotransmitters, chemical messengers, in the brain. The side effects of these medications can be debilitating.

Ketamine works in a different way. IVKT triggers a cascade of events in the brain, temporarily blocking the activation of certain chemical receptors in the brain and signaling other pathways. Ketamine works on NMDA receptors, producing a protein that causes rapid growth of new neural connections, or “rewiring” of the brain. This rewiring effect leads to the antidepressant and anti-inflammatory benefits of IVKT.

Intravenous infusion is the Gold Standard for Ketamine therapy and is widely supported in published clinical studies.


Conditions Treated

PTSD is a disorder that develops in some people who have experienced a shocking, scary, or dangerous event.

It is natural to feel afraid during and after a traumatic situation. Fear triggers many split-second changes in the body to help defend against danger or to avoid it. This “fight-or-flight” response is a typical reaction meant to protect a person from harm. Nearly everyone will experience a range of reactions after trauma, yet most people recover from initial symptoms naturally. Those who continue to experience problems may be diagnosed with PTSD. People who have PTSD may feel stressed or frightened even when they are not in danger.

Symptoms include flashbacks, bad dreams, recurring thoughts, avoidance behaviors, hyperarousal, agitation, cognitive difficulties, and mood disorders. PTSD is often accompanied by depression, substance abuse, or one or more of the other anxiety disorders.

Not every traumatized person develops ongoing (chronic) or even short-term (acute) PTSD. Not everyone with PTSD has been through a dangerous event. Some experiences, like the sudden, unexpected death of a loved one, can also cause PTSD. Symptoms usually begin early, within 3 months of the traumatic incident, but sometimes they begin years afterward. The course of the illness varies. Some people recover within 6 months, while others have symptoms that last much longer. In some people, the condition becomes chronic.

Depression (major depressive disorder or clinical depression) is a common but serious mood disorder. It causes severe
symptoms that affect how you feel, think, and handle daily activities, such as sleeping, eating, or working. To be diagnosed
with depression, the symptoms must be present for at least two weeks.

Some forms of depression are slightly different, or they may develop under unique circumstances, such as: Persistent depressive disorder, Postpartum depression, Psychotic depression, Seasonal affective disorder (SAD), and Bipolar disorder.


Anxiety is a general term for several disorders that cause nervousness, fear, apprehension, and worrying. These disorders affect how we feel and behave and can cause physical symptoms.

The term “anxiety disorder” refers to specific psychiatric disorders that involve extreme fear or worry, and includes generalized anxiety disorder (GAD), panic disorder and panic attacks, agoraphobia, social anxiety disorder, selective mutism, separation anxiety, and specific phobias. Anxiety disorders are real, serious medical conditions – just as real and serious as physical disorders such as heart disease or diabetes. Anxiety disorders are the most common and pervasive mental disorders in the United States.

Suicidal thoughts, or suicidal ideation, means thinking about or planning suicide.Thoughts can range from a detailed plan to a fleeting consideration. It does not include the final act of suicide.

Suicidal thoughts are common, and many people experience them when they are undergoing stress or experiencing depression. In most cases, these are temporary and can be treated, but in some cases, they place the individual at risk for attempting or completing suicide.

Most people who experience suicidal ideation do not carry it through, although some may make suicide attempts. Causes of suicidal thoughts can include depression, anxiety, eating disorders such as anorexia, and substance abuse. People with a family history of mental illness are more likely to have suicidal thoughts.

A person who is experiencing or could experience suicidal thoughts may show the following signs or symptoms:

feeling or appearing to feel trapped or hopeless; feeling intolerable emotional pain; having mood swings, either happy or sad; being agitated, or in a heightened state of anxiety; experiencing changes in personality, routine, or sleeping patterns; consuming drugs or more alcohol than usual, or starting drinking when they had not previously done so; engaging in risky behavior, such as driving carelessly or taking drugs; experiencing depression, panic attacks, impaired concentration, and more.


Chronic pain is often defined as any pain lasting more than 12 weeks. Whereas acute pain is a normal sensation that alerts us to possible injury, chronic pain is very different. Chronic pain persists—often for months or even longer. Chronic pain may arise from an initial injury, such as a back sprain, or there may be an ongoing cause, such as illness. However, there may also be no clear cause. Other health problems, such as fatigue, sleep disturbance, decreased appetite, and mood changes, often accompany chronic pain. Chronic pain may limit a person’s movements, which can reduce flexibility, strength, and stamina. This difficulty in carrying out important and enjoyable activities can lead to disability and despair.




Should Jacksonville’s Veterans Memorial Arena Sell Naming Rights?

Should Jacksonville’s Veterans Memorial Arena Sell Naming Rights?

City Council Set to Name VyStar Credit Union as New Sponsor

UPDDATED March 18, 2019

Jacksonville’s City Council unanimously approved the name change on March 12, 2019. The new name is the Vystar Veteran’s Memorial Arena.

There’s news out this past week from Jacksonville as the City Council will vote on a code change enabling a sale of naming rights to the Veterans Memorial Arena. Vystar Credit Union pitches a great offer, but is any sale a non-starter? The Arena plays host to NCAA Regional March Madness this spring, and entertainment acts from all over come here, so VyStar would be getting a sweetheart deal if they do.


What Price To Put On Veterans Honor?

With the awkwardly-named TIAA Bank Stadium across the street, the Veterans Memorial Arena serves as a lone reminder that not everything society enjoys is up for sale. Those days may be numbered as the Jax City Council takes up a vote to approve a naming rights sale to VyStar Credit Union.

Here’s some details about the actual dollars:

  • VyStar would pay a naming rights fee for 15 years
  • $525,000 the first year
  • $794,110 by year 15
  • $9,764,430 to the City in that time
  • $50,000 to establish a memorial somewhere in the Arena or on the Arena grounds.
  • $750,000 over the 15-year term form a matching concession donation program

The City legislation says the “Veterans Memorial Arena Trust Fund” will support veterans programs and initiatives. That sounds and is great, but there now needs to be a committee formed to oversee the process, and that’s where things can get sticky.

The numbers and benefits to Veterans sweep you off your feet. Congratulations to all involved in the offer. It appears to be thought out and have it’s heart in the right place. , but just keep it out of Veterans


Great reporting from Stephanie Brown @SBrownReports on her February 7th WOKV post. The rest of her article can be found here.


City Council Would Need to Alter Existing Code

This deal also requires changing a portion of the city’s Municipal Buildings and Offices code. The Duval County Courthouse and Downtown Jacksonville Public Library, along with Veterans Memorial, are the only 3 buildings spared from being named for any person. If that code gets changed, the naming rights are sure to pass.

About Once a Soldier


Once a Soldier in on a mission to connect civilians and veterans that care about easing the financial and emotional burden of the family after a veteran suicide. If you care about helping these familes caught in a nightmare not of their making, please donate.

Myths and Realities About Suicide

Myths and Realities About Suicide

Myths and Realities About Suicide

One of the more frustrating issues revolving around soldier suicide, veteran suicide and suicide, in general, is that the more you talk about it, the more it seems to normalize it. That’s why I try to be careful with what I post on the subject, and how often. Still, there needs to be a dialogue about the myths and realities about suicide to help prevent them.

If you are in need of help right now, please click here and scroll down to see numbers and other info to get help now.

Below are the top four myths and realities about suicide that you can help dispel by taking action and sharing with
your community:

1. MYTH: Asking about suicide may lead a Veteran to take his or her life.
REALITY: Asking about suicide does not create suicidal thoughts. The act of asking the question
simply gives the Veteran permission to talk about his or her thoughts or feelings.

2. MYTH: There are talkers and there are doers.
REALITY: Most people who die by suicide have communicated some intent. Someone who
talks about suicide provides others with an opportunity to intervene before suicidal behaviors
occur. Almost everyone who dies by suicide or attempts suicide has given some clue or warning.
Suicide threats should never be ignored. No matter how casually or jokingly said, statements
like, “You’ll be sorry when I’m dead,” or “I can’t see any way out” may indicate serious suicidal

Myths and Realities About Suicide

3. MYTH: If somebody really wants to die by suicide, there is nothing you can do about it.
REALITY: Most suicidal ideas are associated with treatable disorders. Helping someone connect
with treatment can save a life. The acute risk for suicide is often time-limited. If you can help the
person survive the immediate crisis and overcome the strong intent to die by suicide, you have
gone a long way toward promoting a positive outcome.

4. MYTH: He or she really wouldn’t die by suicide because … he just made plans for a vacation, she
has young children at home, he made a verbal or written promise, she knows how dearly her family
loves her.
REALITY: The intent to die can override any rational thinking. Someone experiencing suicidal
thoughts or intent must be taken seriously and referred to a clinical provider who can further
evaluate his or her condition and provide treatment as appropriate.

November 13-17 2017 – Veteran Suicide Prevention Week

November 13-17 2017 – Veteran Suicide Prevention Week

Veteran Suicide Prevention Week

Preventing Veterans Suicide is Everyone’s Business

VA Secretary David Shulkin ushered in a new era for Veteran Suicide awareness and prevention in the Oval Office for the President’s signing of a proclamation establishing November as Veterans and Military Families Month. This is the first time that America will celebrate Veterans and Military Families for the entire month and not just on Veterans Day. A big part of that is Veteran Suicide Prevention Week that is now, as of Friday, coming to a close. Hope it helped and will help in the future.

“Our Veterans and Military Families are an important part of our lives throughout the year, and by focusing for the first time nationally on a whole month of activities nationwide for Veterans and Military Families Month, we can more fully celebrate and recognize their contributions to the nation,” said Secretary Shulkin. There was nothing in the press release about Veteran Suicide, but there is more that comes with this new initiative. We sincerely hope that it helps, but until there is better treatment for PTSD, like no more soldiers in combat, veteran suicide is here to stay until that day.

In this space, we have outlined ways to prevent suicide that carry over to veteran suicide. It is a very practical guide culled from some of the best sources on the web.

The actual headline of the VA’s press release carried my headline here that reads: “Preventing Veterans Suicide is Everyone’s Business” and today, November 17th, that initiative kicks off Veteran Suicide Prevention Week. All I could find of it was this PDF published by the VA.

By way of recap, the main takeaway is that SUICIDE IS PREVENTABLE. I don’t have the expertise or data to poke holes in the Pollyanna-ish edict, but we’re foolish not to try. I do know that if a person has tried and failed at a suicide attempt, that it won’t be their last. So looking at this in the best light, if someone has tried it, the full press must be on using all the help you can glean from this PDF.

Veteran Suicide Prevention Week 2017

Last big takeaway is this, lifted directly from the PDF and especially relevant today:

Means Do Matter:

Know how to safely store firearms in your home. Most Veterans who die by suicide use firearms. For someone in crisis, a locked firearm can mean the difference between a life saved and a tragic outcome. Though many Veterans are well-versed in gun safety, all Veterans and their families should understand how to properly handle and store firearms in the home. There has been a rise in firearm suicides among female Veterans, in particular. The risk of unintentional firearm deaths among youth drops by 80 percent when guns are stored
separately from ammunition in a lock box (Journal of the American Medical Association, 2005).

VA Suicide Prevention Coordinators, especially now that there’s a Veteran Suicide Prevention Week,  distribute free gun locks in their communities — talk to people in your community and consider offering free gun locks from various agencies. Veterans also tend to inflict self-harm by overdosing on medication. Find out whether local
hospitals and pharmacies provide free pill boxes to limit the amount of medication a Veteran has access to during an emotional or difficult time. Encourage health care providers to limit the amount of pills in any single prescription, especially if there is a significant risk of overdose.

People who have recently been in an inpatient psychiatric unit or at an emergency room for mental health or substance misuse are at increased risk for suicide for 90 days following their discharge. Consider working with pharmacists in your community to add a crisis line phone number to pill containers and prescription paperwork.



Media Coverage of Las Vegas Mass Shooting and Solider Suicide

Media Coverage of Las Vegas Mass Shooting and Solider Suicide

Media Coverage of Las Vegas Mass Shooting and Solider Suicide

As a culture, we have a lot to learn, and we are, but when it comes to how we handle things like yesterday’s shooting in Las Vegas and soldier suicide, we need to learn faster. When Columbine was still fresh in the news, an interviewer was searching for a quote on how movies may have played a role in the shooting. To his credit and adding to his impressive POV, Roger Ebert gave this account of the incident and his reply:

“The day after Columbine, I was interviewed for the Tom Brokaw news program. The reporter had been assigned a theory and was seeking sound bites to support it. “Wouldn’t you say,” she asked, “that killings like this are influenced by violent movies?” No, I said, I wouldn’t say that. “But what about ‘Basketball Diaries’?” she asked. “Doesn’t that have a scene of a boy walking into a school with a machine gun?” The obscure 1995 Leonardo Di Caprio movie did indeed have a brief fantasy scene of that nature, I said, but the movie failed at the box office (it grossed only $2.5 million), and it’s unlikely the Columbine killers saw it.
The reporter looked disappointed, so I offered her my theory.

“Events like this,” I said, “if they are influenced by anything, are influenced by news programs like your own. When an unbalanced kid walks into a school and starts shooting, it becomes a major media event. Cable news drops ordinary programming and goes around the clock with it. The story is assigned a logo and a theme song; these two kids were packaged as the Trench Coat Mafia. The message is clear to other disturbed kids around the country: If I shoot up my school, I can be famous. The TV will talk about nothing else but me. Experts will try to figure out what I was thinking. The kids and teachers at school will see they shouldn’t have messed with me. I’ll go out in a blaze of glory.”

In short, I said, events like Columbine are influenced far less by violent movies than by CNN, the NBC Nightly News and all the other news media, who glorify the killers in the guise of “explaining” them. I commended the policy at the Sun-Times, where our editor said the paper would no longer feature school killings on Page 1. The reporter thanked me and turned off the camera. Of course the interview was never used. They found plenty of talking heads to condemn violent movies, and everybody was happy.”

The same is still true today for soldier suicide, these mass shootings, and how the media keeps handling them the same way. No one is thinking that if movies disappeared tomorrow that any of this would disappear along with it. That would be wishful and blissful thinking, but it ain’t gonna happen. The best that we can do is try to get the guns like the kind this murderer used. Again, won’t make it disappear but added together with a few other options, it will make a difference.

The point for soldier suicide and veteran suicide is that by not showing these idiots 247 for three days straight, it will have a beneficial effect. People won’t be glorified and they won’t see this path as rewarding.