A serious VR game for acrophobia therapy in an urban environment

C. Anton, O. Mitrut, A. Moldoveanu, F. Moldoveanu, J. Kosinka

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Abstract

Much of the costs and dangers of exposure therapy in phobia treatment can be removed through virtual reality (VR). Exposing people to heights, for instance, might sound easy, but it still involves time and money investments to reach a tall building, mountain or bridge. People suffering from milder forms of acrophobia might not even be treated at all, the cost not being worth it. This paper presents a prototype that allows exposure therapy to be done in a controlled environment, in a more comfortable, quick and cheaper way. By applying acrophobia questionnaires, collecting biophysical data and developing a virtual reality game, we can expose volunteers to heights and analyze if there is any change in their fear and anxiety levels. This way, regardless of the initial anxiety level and phobia severity, we can check if there is any post-therapy improvement and verify if virtual reality is a viable alternative to real-world exposure.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publication2020 IEEE International Conference on Artificial Intelligence and Virtual Reality (AIVR)
Place of PublicationLos Alamitos, CA, USA
PublisherIEEE Computer Society
Pages258-265
Number of pages8
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 1-Dec-2020

Keywords

  • games
  • medical treatment
  • buildings
  • virtual environments
  • urban areas
  • music
  • psychology

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