For veterans, virtual reality treatment addresses very real trauma

Wednesday, November 26, 2008

There are now over 800,000 veterans of Iraq and Afghanistan. Of those, roughly 300,000 have Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder, but only half of these veterans have been professionally treated for their trauma. Traditional "exposure therapy" treatments help veterans get a handle on their experiences by having them relive them, using methods like talk therapy, guided visualizations, and others. Modern technology has recently begun making strides as effective treatment for 21st century combat. Software known as "Virtual Iraq" allows soldiers, through simulation, to become desensitized to deep-rooted traumatic experiences.
"It's a very challenging treatment. It's designed to raise stress levels. It's designed to do it in a controlled, therapeutic way, so that the trauma survivor can feel that they can manage the strong emotions that come with the memory."
—Dr. Michael Kramer on using virtual reality to treat PTSD

Guests:

Dr. Michael Kramer

Contributors:

Chelsea Merz

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