Views of Practitioners and Researchers on the Use of Virtual Reality in Treatments for Substance Use Disorders
AuthorsSkeva, Rigina; email: email@example.com
MetadataShow full item record
AbstractVirtual Reality Therapy (VRT) has been shown to be effective in treating anxiety disorders and phobias, but has not yet been widely tested for Substance Use Disorders (SUDs) and it is not known whether health care practitioners working with SUDs would use VRT if it were available. We report the results of an interview study exploring practitioners’ and researchers’ views on the utility of VRT for SUD treatment. Practitioners and researchers with at least two years’ experience delivering or researching and designing SUD treatments were recruited (n = 14). Interviews were thematically analyzed, resulting in themes relating to the safety and realism of VRT, and the opportunity for the additional insight it could offer to during SUD treatment. Participants were positive about employing VRT as an additional treatment for SUD. VRT was thought suitable for treating adults and people with mental health issues or trauma, provided that risks were appropriately managed. Subsequent relapse, trauma and over-confidence in the success of treatment were identified as risks. The opportunity VRT offered to include other actors in therapy (via avatar use), and observe reactions, were benefits that could not currently be achieved with other forms of therapy. Overall, VRT was thought to offer the potential for safe, realistic, personalized and insightful exposure to diverse triggering scenarios, and to be acceptable for integration into a wide range of SUD treatments.
CitationFrontiers in Psychology, volume 12, page 606761
PublisherFrontiers Media S.A.
DescriptionFrom Frontiers via Jisc Publications Router
History: received 2020-09-15, collection 2021, accepted 2021-04-27, epub 2021-05-21
Publication status: Published