Category Archives: Cyberpsychology

Patients suffering from post-traumatic stress disorder or other anxiety conditions are finding real solutions in a virtual world (incl. video)

Patients suffering from post-traumatic stress disorder or other anxiety conditions are finding real solutions in a virtual world.

Stéphane Bouchard, Canada Research Chair in clinical cyberpsychology has demonstrated how a virtual tour of an animated space can help people battle their personal demons.

Afraid of spiders?

Virtual reality therapy allows patients to confront spiders, a bit at a time, with visuals so real in a three-dimensional, computer-simulated environment as to evoke the same emotions as the real thing.”

By Wayne Scanlan at Ottawa Citizen

Image and video by Errol McGihon

Read more: https://ottawacitizen.com/news/local-news/virtual-reality-therapy-treats-anxiety-with-a-dose-of-virtual-demons

How VR is Helping Children With Autism Navigate the World Around Them (incl. video)

“VR is being embraced by therapists, counselors, teachers, parents and their children as a pivotal therapy tool to help those with autism to better communicate and connect with their family, friends, and the world around them.

Dr. Patrick Bordnick, dean and professor at Tulane School of Social Work came up with VR- Project Delta or VR-Δ, a virtual reality app that helps patients prevent drug and alcohol relapse by practicing self-control and awareness skills in realistic simulations where drugs and alcohol are present.

Dr. Bordnick has also created the app named VR-qualis est vita for kids and adults with autism. This app places participants in a realistic environment to help them learn communication, social skills, and how to interact within the home, school, and other environments.”

By Juanita Leatham at VR Fitness Insider

Image & Video: Blue Cross Blue Shield Association

Read more: https://www.vrfitnessinsider.com/how-vr-is-helping-children-with-autism-navigate-the-world-around-them/

Virtual reality for therapy: Ground breaking technologies for treating mental illness (incl. video)

“VR has been known to make groundbreaking changes to the education and gaming industry. Some of its contributions are to the fields of therapy and psychological research.

Researchers, psychologists, scientists and designers alike all work together to create VR technology to treat mental illness.

Two of the most common VR applications in treating mental illnesses are exposure therapy and cognitive behavioral therapy.”

By Jeannie Lo at ScadConnector

Video and Image by BBC

Read More: https://scadconnector.com/2018/05/25/virtual-reality-for-therapy-ground-breaking-technologies-for-treating-mental-illness/

Researchers are using VR to help teachers understand autism (incl. video)

“Researchers [at the University of Malta] are using VR as an empathy tool to help neurotypical teachers understand their students with autism.

The researchers created a VR application that would help replicate the experience of an autistic child in their classroom, by the use of audio and visual tricks.

The person from whose perspective the film is shot sometimes doesn’t fully process stimuli, and a sense of distress is conveyed by a blurring of peripheral vision.”

By Rachel Kaser at The Next Web

Image: University of Malta

Read more: https://thenextweb.com/virtual-reality/2018/04/05/researchers-using-vr-help-teachers-understand-autism/

Virtual Reality training puts adopters, foster carers and social workers into the mind of an abused child (incl. video)

“You could be forgiven for thinking that after adopting nine children over the past 27 years, Sue Clifford has seen it all in terms of training for working with vulnerable young people who have experienced abuse and trauma.

But she had never tried Virtual Reality until a new Restorative Caring pilot by the Cornerstone Project was launched.

The pilot programme, currently in its first wave of partnerships, puts adopters like Sue and foster carers and social workers in the mind of a child as they experience abuse and neglect.

She says she found the experience invaluable when going forward with her children.”

By Luke Stevenson, Community Care

Image: Cornerstone

Read more: http://www.communitycare.co.uk/2018/02/08/virtual-reality-can-help-give-social-workers-adopters-carers-new-insight-child-abuse/

Virtual reality therapy provides medical treatment alternative (incl. video)

“Phobias, those extreme or irrational fears people have of maybe heights, or spiders, can make normal life difficult for many sufferers.

But in Mexico, one student engineer has come up with an innovative way to treat patients’ conditions, using Virtual Reality (VR) technology to gradually expose them to their fears.

The VR technology reflects the reality that a patient is afraid of.

Fear of the dark is treated by gradually fading light within the headset, while patients with a fear of heights experience the simulation of gradually ascending from a virtual ground level.”

By Alasdair Baverstock, CGTN America

Read more: https://america.cgtn.com/2018/01/25/virtual-reality-therapy-provides-medical-treatment-alternative

How virtual reality therapy is treating pain in West Sussex (video)

“Horsham District Council is the first council in the UK to introduce a new form of virtual reality therapy for those with long term medical conditions. The council’s Community Link team is championing a virtual reality experience for the benefit of people with dementia and those living with long term medical conditions.

The therapy is based on the use of a headset which creates a virtual reality environment for users, helping them become immersed within a variety of different scenes.

Chosen scenes include experiences such as starlit skies, forests full of animals, dolphins swimming and nostalgic “days out” to beaches with the sound of the sea lapping on the shore.”

By Spirit FM

Image: Tribemix/ImmersiCare

Read more: https://www.spiritfm.net/news/sussex-news/2447092/watch-how-virtual-reality-therapy-is-treating-pain-in-west-sussex/

Virtual reality technology helping kids with sensory challenges like autism (incl. video)

“For kids with sensory challenges like autism, everyday experiences like popping down to the supermarket, crossing the road or swimming in the sea can be absolutely terrifying. 

But one Christchurch school has introduced something to try and bridge this gap.

With help from electronics giant Samsung, Allenvale School got hold of some virtual reality goggles.

And they’re proving a much needed portal for 10-year-old Kingston Friggin to enjoy school, where he once hated it.”

By Seven Sharp at TV New Zealand

Read more: https://www.tvnz.co.nz/one-news/new-zealand/virtual-reality-technology-helping-kids-sensory-challenges-like-autism-v1

Virtual reality reduces phantom pain in paraplegics (incl. video)

“Virtual reality reduces phantom body pain in paraplegics and creates the illusion that they can feel their paralyzed legs being touched again.

The results could one day translate into therapies to reduce chronic pain in paraplegics.

In breakthrough research led by neuroscientist Olaf Blanke and his team at EPFL, Switzerland, the scientists show that phantom body pain can be reduced in paraplegics by creating a bodily illusion with the help of virtual reality. The results are published in Neurology.”


Image, text and video provided by Ecole Polytechnique Federale de Lausanne (EPFL)

Read more: https://actu.epfl.ch/news/virtual-reality-reduces-phantom-pain-in-paraplegic/

Neuroscientist harnesses the power of virtual reality to unlock the mysteries of memory (incl. video)

“UCLA researchers are the first to blend virtual reality with a surgically implanted prosthesis to reveal what happens in the brain when people create memories.

At UCLA, Nanthia Suthana is one of the first neuroscientists in the world to harness the power of VR to unravel how someone’s brain encodes and retrieves memories while the person explores a new virtual setting on foot.

“Without our memories, each of us would be lost in time and cut off from other people,” said Suthana, an assistant professor of neurosurgery and psychiatry at the David Geffen School of Medicine at UCLA. “At UCLA, we are the first to blend virtual reality with a surgically implanted prosthesis to reveal what happens inside the brain when we create memories.”

Thanks to her curiosity about how memories define us, Suthana’s advances in virtual reality have opened the door into an entirely new realm of brain research.”

By Elaine Schmidt at UCLA Newsroom

Read more: http://newsroom.ucla.edu/stories/neuroscientist-harnesses-the-power-of-virtual-reality-to-unlock-the-mysteries-of-memory