Yes, technology is here to help. VIRTUAL REALITY THERAPY provides relief and cure to different conditions with the help of innovative VR technologies.
Virtual Reality Exposure Therapy (VRET) uses specially programmed computers, visual immersion devices and artificially created environments to give the patient a simulated experience that can be used to diagnose and treat psychological conditions.
In many environmental phobias, reaction to the perceived hazards, and the like are usually triggered by visual, auditory, olfactive and kinesthetic stimuli.
In environmental addiction, the person is exposed visually and olfactory to the cue stimuli that person cannot control. For instance, the client is exposed to different types of cigarettes or alcohol, in various virtual environments such as at home, at the bar or at the party and the person learned the cue management and in the same time, it’s desensitized to the stimulus.
In VR-based therapies, the virtual world is a means of providing artificial, controlled stimuli in the context of treatment, and with a therapist able to monitor the patient’s reaction.
VIRTUAL THERAPIES proved efficiency in cases of:
– Phobias (fear of flying, public speaking, bridges, heights, storms, spider, dogs, dark, needle, closed spaces)
– Job Interviews
– Combat-Related PTSD (post-traumatic syndrome disorder)
– Acute Pain Procedures (e.g. injections, intravenous line placement, dental procedures, burn treatment, broken bone repair)
– Smoke/Alcohol Addiction
-Anxiety management relaxation techniques in virtual reality such as mindfulness, 646 breath, autogenic techniques
With the help of Virtually Better, Inc® we made available for Romania a system for (aviophobia, glossophobia, astraphobia, cynophobia, acrophobia, arachnophobia, gefirophobia, brontophobia, aichmophobia, nyctophobia), smoke/alcohol addiction, anxiety management relaxation techniques in virtual reality.
Fear of flying and fear of public speaking which is proved to be in the first top 10 phobias worldwide.
How it works
The person that uses the therapy faces their fear or cue in a virtual world, which simulates the feared or addiction situation.
The patient wears goggles and headphones and experiences visual, auditory, olfactory and kinesthetic (or physical) information immersing them in the situation.
The patient will “feel” like they are “there,” and with the trained clinician asking specific questions and creating patient specific events to occur in the software, the patient will respond physically and emotionally as if the situation was real.
Virtual Reality Exposure Therapies is especially helpful when in vivo exposure to the environment that generates fear or cue is difficult to arrange or challenging to control.
For instance, to treat fear of public speaking, it is nearly impossible to assemble a group of people to serve as an audience.
For fear of flying, in vivo environment, clinicians can’t guarantee turbulence, storms, or unfamiliar noises.
In VRET, the clinician has complete control over these phobias and many other fear provoking triggers, which results in a patient-tailored exposure session, that can be repeated as many times as clinically necessary.
This gives the patient a greater sense of mastery and control when faced with real-life anxiety.