With the emergence of newer technologies like virtual reality and augmented reality, the science community is beginning to consider new treatment possibilities for specific populations. In the mental health space, we have been studying the effects of exposure therapy within the VR/AR environment for veteran-combat patients with PTSD. The research results are supportive for a new mental health treatment modality in VR/AR therapy.
Virtual reality therapy and augmented reality therapy is something new that continues to be studied through clinical trials. My focus with VR/AR therapy is to support the adolescent population that have undergone psychological trauma resulting from the recent 2020 COVID-19 global pandemic. Children and adolescents have shifted from a body-centric experience to a more mental and emotional experience that they were not ready for. As a result of these changes to their daily lives, most adolescents now are much more comfortable communicating and interacting with the world through technology.
In 2020 I briefly paused working with children and adolescents due to the lack of attention and the amount of distractions that were happening in the traditional video chats. Notifications, games, and music, where places they would prefer to be, then with an adult asking them about their problems. Most of this population has grown up playing video games and has associated computers with another world that is different than the one where the issues reside. Meeting them where they are is imperative to support this population.
Another positive aspect of VR/AR therapy that I am looking forward to exploring is virtual group therapy, and allowing for anonymity while sharing deeply shameful experiences, thereby reducing self-consciousness. I am collaborating with Virgils, a HIPPA-compliant platform for VR/AR therapies that is available through phones, laptops, and VR headsets.
If you are interested in learning more about VR/AR therapy for your child or teen, please submit a request for more information below. Thank you.
Crucial to science education is hands-on involvement: showing, not just telling; real experiments and field trips and not just 'virtual reality.'
Orlando Zuniga, LMFT98936 Licensed Marriage & Family Therapist Neuro-linguistic Programming (NLP) Coach Clinical Hypnotherapist