This advanced therapy involves the exposure to virtual environments gradually over time to overcome a phobia. The virtual environment has been designed with great care for the treatment of those with anxiety disorders. The advantage of this therapy is that the individual can be exposed to the feared situation in a virtual environment rather than convincing the client to be creative and visualize the stimulus or having them face the actual environment. The individual will be given goggles and earphones to wear in order to see and hear the virtual setting. With the help of a tracking device, the virtual setting will move as the client moves. This program will provide sound effects and visualization that will re-create those of the real setting. A professionally trained therapist will supervise this session and control the virtual environment with a computer to the already programmed situations.

What phobias can be treated with this therapy?

  • Fear of thunderstorms
  • Fear of heights/elevators
  • Fear of flying
  • Social Phobia
  • Public Speaking
  • Job interview
  • Quit smoking

What is the Procedure?

  • Client will have a consultation with a Neuro Health staff
  • Client will be taught techniques to overcome the fear
  • Client will now be exposed to the Virtual Setting
  • A complete treatment requires 8-10 sessions (This may vary depending on individual)
  • Each session will last approximately 45-55 minutes

FAQs about Virtual Reality Exposure

• What are phobias?
Phobias are extreme or irrational fear of something such as heights, public speaking and more. It is a form of anxiety disorder.

• Am I a good candidate?
Everyone is afraid of something, but if this fear is interfering with your daily life something must be done to overcome it. During the initial consultation, the doctor will analyze your fear and its severity and determine if you are a good candidate for such procedure.

• How does the treatment process begin?
On the first day of the treatment you and the doctor will talk about what is virtual reality and any questions will be answered. A history and clinical assessment would be completed. Following this, you will learn relaxation techniques and breathing skills to utilize to reduce fear and stress levels.

• What are the risks of Virtual Reality?
There are no risks caused by the Virtual Reality treatment.

• What is the rate of success?
Virtual reality has a success rate of approximately 92-94%. At NHI, those who have been treated with Virtual Reality have succeeded in overcoming their fears.