Virtual reality therapy (VRT) can cure traumatic stress and anxiety in people. During the treatment, patients repeatedly see simulated environments to overcome difficulties of the past. This therapy has complex procedures, which is why only skilled doctors can perform it.
This therapy can successfully cure alcoholism, eating disorder, fear of public speaking, fear of flying, and more. A virtual environment is made based on patient's memory. Visuals and sounds are added in this virtual environment for making it close to real situation. Patients who are afraid of flaying may see simulation of airplane, and sexual assault victims may see a person approaching in a dark place. During the treatment, therapists continuously communicate with patients.
What Science says about this Therapy
Scientific evidence is available, Virtual therapy and hypnosis (also known as virtual hypnosis therapy) can cure fear of public speaking, anxiety, stress, and emotional pain. Many scientific theories suggest applying three-dimensional technology and hypnosis together to help patients.
Not long ago, a research report provided evidence that virtual hypnosis is effective against neuropathic pain. During this research, tests were conducted on a female patient that had 5 years of failed treatment. Patient was able to overcome her condition up to 36% in 33 sessions. These virtual sessions were effective as compare to non-virtual hypnosis treatment. The title of this research was “Cyberpsychology, Behavior, and Social Networking”.
Another research that combined emotional therapy with virtual reality, suggests that positive emotions can enhance activity management in people. The research was conducted to represent acceptability, satisfaction, and efficiency of this therapy for promoting positive emotions. This research provides evidence that this therapy can cure anxiety and stress.
In 2015, two tests were conducted to find efficacy of cognitive behavioral therapy. The aim of this study was to unlock negative memories and modify behavior and emotional state. 163 female patients were given treatment. Some of them were given standard behavioral program (SBP), and others were given SBP plus virtual reality. There wasn't significant difference between both the treatments, but odds show that patients who had virtual treatment had greater possibility of improvements.
Aim of this Therapy
Traumatic Stress is not the only condition that can be cured using this therapy. As the cost of this therapy is coming down, scientists are looking to treat autism and phobias using it. Virtual reality therapy is an effective treatment that can cure fear of things, emotional pain, and anxiety.