Printer Friendly

Virtual Reality may be way to face your fears.

THERE is growing evidence that Virtual Reality can help people face their fears.

For those afraid of heights, flying, spiders or whatever threats loom large, popping on a headset could help.

Take Mimerse's Itsy software, for example.

This takes a user through ten levels of exposure to spiders at their own pace.

Starting off in a game-like way with cartoon versions wearing boots, it leads eventually to a face to face with a very realistic Mexican tarantula.

Experiments with subjects suffering from Arachnophobia have shown positive results.

Those involved were more relaxed in the presence of spiders than before working their way through the three-hour Ultim'at' ely, you are putting your fear of heights to the test by walking the plank, over a thousand feet up amongst a forest of skyscrapers.

programme, in the company of its soothing and encouraging voice-over.

This is the hi-tech version of exposure therapy, or systematic desensitisation to give its posh name.

First practiced in the 1950s, it erodes fears by repeated and progressive exposure to a perceived threat. Another example is Richie's Plank Experience.

This invites you to place a length of floorboard on the carpet, hop on to it and pop on a VR headset.

Ultimately, you are putting your fear of heights to the test by walking the plank, over a thousand feet up amongst a forest of skyscrapers.

These examples are but a toe in the water of the presumed potential of VR to help with anxieties of all sorts.

Academics and VR boffins are running experiments and pilots of using VR to alleviate exam stress, driving test nerves and all of the angst that goes alongside asking someone for a date.

Virtual reality might be emerging as a significant survival tool for our ever more complex and challenging world.

COPYRIGHT 2018 MGN Ltd.
No portion of this article can be reproduced without the express written permission from the copyright holder.
Copyright 2018 Gale, Cengage Learning. All rights reserved.

Article Details
Printer friendly Cite/link Email Feedback
Publication:Solihull News (Solihull, Birmingham, England)
Date:Mar 9, 2018
Words:299
Previous Article:Cheque this out! Staff raise PS500 for charity.
Next Article:Everything you need to know about measles as cases rise; AMANDA KILLELEA REPORTS AS CASES OF THE DISEASE - WHICH HAD BEEN VIRTUALLY ERADICATED IN THE...

Terms of use | Privacy policy | Copyright © 2021 Farlex, Inc. | Feedback | For webmasters |