TAM­ING PTSD

The Washington Times Weekly - - Politics -

Re­turn­ing sol­diers re­luc­tant to seek psy­cho­log­i­cal ther­apy for com­bat-re­lated post-trau­matic stress dis­or­der have an al­ter­na­tive. The Univer­sity of South­ern Cal­i­for­nia’s In­sti­tute for Cre­ative Tech­nolo­gies at Los An­ge­les has de­vel­oped war gamestyle, vir tual re­al­ity ap­pli­ca­tions to treat it. The re­searchers found that 80 per­cent of those who com­pleted treat­ment showed “clin­i­cally mean­ing­ful re­duc­tions” in PTSD-re­lated anx­i­ety and de­pres­sion.

“The cur­rent gen­er­a­tion of young mil­i­tary per­son­nel, hav­ing grown up with dig­i­tal gam­ing tech­nol­ogy, may ac­tu­ally be more at­tracted to and com­fort­able with par­tic­i­pa­tion in vir­tual re­al­ity ex­po­sure ther­apy,” say the re­searchers, who mod­eled the ap­pli­ca­tions based on de­scrip­tions of sol­diers re­turn­ing from “the war en­vi­ron­ment.”

The study, in the Jour­nal of Clin­i­cal Psy­chol­ogy in Med­i­cal Set­tings, deemed the re­sults “en­cour­ag­ing.”

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