Treating phobia through VR exposure

Treating phobia through VR exposure

Syndrome is one of the academic projects we are mentoring at ESPRIT Mobile. It consists on a 3D experience to treat phobias using AR/VR

Game Development, Virtual Reality

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Description

Everyone is afraid of something, even if just a little. Everyone has a thing they fear the most sometimes to the point where the mere presence of that thing or situation incapacitates their mind, body and soul. This is how millions of people around the world feel. To many of them, something as simple as going out for groceries feels like walking through a minefield within a warzone. People who suffer phobias live in a constant state of alertness, scanning (conscious and unconsciously) their surroundings for the presence of these “threats” which can prevent them from having a normal life. The actual way of treating phobia by exposure therapy can be highly impractical, For example a person with the fear of flying cannot possibly be expected to buy a plane ticket on a weekly or daily basis.And this is where we come in …The solution is virtual reality.

Project Syndrome is a Virtual Reality application on Oculus Rift. The project consists on virtual reality exposure, instead of boarding a real plane, a person can simply put on a virtual reality headset and a pair of headphone that together simulate the experience. Every step of the way, the team working on this project consulted a qualified psychologist who helped design user-scenarios that can be both effective and helpful to the patient.

The goal of this project ‘SYNDROME’ is to design and develop a tool that can be used to detect or treat phobias. It consists on creating an innovative method that could be used to treat a patient with certain phobias. As a main tool we used Unity3D game engine, with this game engine we explored different ways to treat these mental conditions using a virtual reality environment for the population with phobias. Our project facilitates the task for the psychologist in order that he will not need to describe a scene to put the patient in the detection phase, but a specific scenes for each type of phobia was designed for him , it provides the user with real-life like scenarios in a 3D world, face him with some phobia triggers like heights, darkness and animals then use sensors to measure his body conditions like heartrate, amount of sweat on his skin and his body’s temperature in order to detect the impact of the phobia trigger on him and determinate whether he has the phobia involved or not. Our project is a revolution in the psychology field, in fact, each employer or partner who needs to detect a particular phobia in a candidate, can use our project “syndrome”, especially in the police sector, military … In the case of a detected phobia , the patient may access his psychological assessment directly at home thanks to our therapy strategy.

Impact

SYNDROME offers a truly immersive3D world because of the use of Unity and Oculus rift. Huge 3D world well designed to keep the users from getting bored each time they try to detect a phobia. Narrator to guide the user all along the detection situation. Accurate feedback through the use of dedicated sensors. Ease of use and interactions because of the use of Leap Motion. The preservation of physician–patient privilege through identification system No need for doctors to detect phobias. Therapy session can be done from home.

Help psychologists gain time and effort trying to identify to patient’s phobias and help them creating an immersive experience to reput the patient in a life like environment in order to manifest his phobias.

We see “SYNDROME”’ as having the scope to reach millions who currently are not connected with their inner- fears. We have worked alongside psychologists to develop the software which brings credibility in a nearly not discovered market opportunity.

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zayen c. created project Treating phobia through VR exposure

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Treating phobia through VR exposure

Everyone is afraid of something, even if just a little. Everyone has a thing they fear the most sometimes to the point where the mere presence of that thing or situation incapacitates their mind, body and soul. This is how millions of people around the world feel. To many of them, something as simple as going out for groceries feels like walking through a minefield within a warzone. People who suffer phobias live in a constant state of alertness, scanning (conscious and unconsciously) their surroundings for the presence of these “threats” which can prevent them from having a normal life. The actual way of treating phobia by exposure therapy can be highly impractical, For example a person with the fear of flying cannot possibly be expected to buy a plane ticket on a weekly or daily basis.And this is where we come in …The solution is virtual reality.

Project Syndrome is a Virtual Reality application on Oculus Rift. The project consists on virtual reality exposure, instead of boarding a real plane, a person can simply put on a virtual reality headset and a pair of headphone that together simulate the experience. Every step of the way, the team working on this project consulted a qualified psychologist who helped design user-scenarios that can be both effective and helpful to the patient.

The goal of this project ‘SYNDROME’ is to design and develop a tool that can be used to detect or treat phobias. It consists on creating an innovative method that could be used to treat a patient with certain phobias. As a main tool we used Unity3D game engine, with this game engine we explored different ways to treat these mental conditions using a virtual reality environment for the population with phobias. Our project facilitates the task for the psychologist in order that he will not need to describe a scene to put the patient in the detection phase, but a specific scenes for each type of phobia was designed for him , it provides the user with real-life like scenarios in a 3D world, face him with some phobia triggers like heights, darkness and animals then use sensors to measure his body conditions like heartrate, amount of sweat on his skin and his body’s temperature in order to detect the impact of the phobia trigger on him and determinate whether he has the phobia involved or not. Our project is a revolution in the psychology field, in fact, each employer or partner who needs to detect a particular phobia in a candidate, can use our project “syndrome”, especially in the police sector, military … In the case of a detected phobia , the patient may access his psychological assessment directly at home thanks to our therapy strategy.

Impact

SYNDROME offers a truly immersive3D world because of the use of Unity and Oculus rift. Huge 3D world well designed to keep the users from getting bored each time they try to detect a phobia. Narrator to guide the user all along the detection situation. Accurate feedback through the use of dedicated sensors. Ease of use and interactions because of the use of Leap Motion. The preservation of physician–patient privilege through identification system No need for doctors to detect phobias. Therapy session can be done from home.

Help psychologists gain time and effort trying to identify to patient’s phobias and help them creating an immersive experience to reput the patient in a life like environment in order to manifest his phobias.

We see “SYNDROME”’ as having the scope to reach millions who currently are not connected with their inner- fears. We have worked alongside psychologists to develop the software which brings credibility in a nearly not discovered market opportunity.

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