Automated virtual reality therapy helps people overcome phobia of heights

By: Nicola Davis | Automated virtual reality therapy helps people overcome phobia of heights | Neuroscience | The Guardian

Scientists hope computer programme which requires no human therapist could be used to treat other mental health problems

A fear of heights could be overcome with the help of a virtual therapist, new research suggests, with experts saying the findings boost hopes virtual reality could play a key role in tackling other mental health problems.

According to a 2014 YouGov survey, an aversion to heights is more common in the UK than a fear of spiders, snakes, or being on a plane, with 23% of British adults “very afraid” of heights and 35% a little afraid.

Related: Don’t dismiss tech solutions to mental health problems

Related: How virtual reality is changing the game in healthcare

Related: Tests raise hopes for radical new therapy for phobias and PTSD

Continue reading…

icn-neurocience

Latest news and features from theguardian.com, the world’s leading liberal voice