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Medicine

Researchers Create Virtual Reality 'Parties' To Treat Drug Addiction 47

Posted by Unknown Lamer
from the virtual-drugs-just-not-as-much-fun dept.
Jason Koebler (3528235) writes To help people overcome drug addiction, researchers at the University of Houston's Graduate School of Social Work are building hyper-realistic virtual worlds to recreate situations that trigger cravings for nicotine, alcohol, weed, and now, hard drugs like heroin. Traditional relapse therapy usually involves roleplaying: Therapists often pretend to be a friend or some other familiar person and offer the patient their drug of choice in order to teach them avoidance strategies. By strapping patients into a virtual reality headset and running them through a familiar scenario where they commonly use the drug, like a party, the treatment can be much more realistic and effective, researchers say (video).
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Researchers Create Virtual Reality 'Parties' To Treat Drug Addiction

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  • Re:Unrealistic... (Score:5, Insightful)

    by bickerdyke (670000) on Friday August 01, 2014 @04:13AM (#47579877)

    This is about teaching on HOW to say no despite peer pressure.

  • by gunz_n_space80 (3711137) on Friday August 01, 2014 @04:28AM (#47579909)
    Well said! I know it's not the same, but I had serious problems with alcoholism years ago and got the same impression that you did from reading this article. After-school special peer pressure users or drinkers are not suffering from a real addiction. My addiction was a very personal thing for me that no one else who knew me would understand or approve of which is why I had to keep it secret. I felt OK and was able to cope only when I was under the influence, or knew that I was not far removed from being able to achieve that state. I lacked the mental toughness and tools to fix the problems that the sober me could not reconcile and turned to liquor to define me because I just could not be bothered with it. After coming face to face with the fact that I had irrevocably altered my life in a profoundly negative way, I made the choice to live life sober and take control.

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