New era in virtual reality therapy for common phobias

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New era in virtual reality therapy for common phobias

A virtual reality viewpoint from a simulation designed to help people with a fear of heights. Virtual reality therapy can help patients by exposing them gradually to their greatest terrors. The technology is just now reaching the mainstream after 20 years of research.

New era in virtual reality therapy for common phobias

A virtual reality viewpoint from a simulation designed to help people with a fear of heights. Virtual reality therapy can help patients by exposing them gradually to their greatest terrors. The technology is just now reaching the mainstream after 20 years of research.

New era in virtual reality therapy for common phobias

Nick Harrell holds up a pair of virtual reality goggles that are used in therapy to treat his fear of flying during a demonstration of the technology to treat phobias at the National Mental Health Innovation Center in Aurora, Colo., on Thursday, Aug. 16, 2018. Behavioral Health Scientist Sam Hubley is at right.

New era in virtual reality therapy for common phobias

Limbix via AP

A virtual reality viewpoint from a driving simulation. Limbix has an arrangement with the National Mental Health Innovation Center at University of Colorado’s medical school to help field-test VR content for treating phobias.

New era in virtual reality therapy for common phobias

Hunter Hoffman, a research scientist at the University of Washington in Seattle, says, “We’ve all been piggybacking on this technology that was initially developed for videogaming.” Hoffman developed an early virtual reality therapy called Spider World two decades ago.