Shout to let it all out in VR 'Primal Scream' therapy.
We’ve already seen how virtual reality (VR) s being explored for many uses in the healthcare sphere. This includes applications for mental health, with VR apps to help distract from pain or help with addiction or phobias. A team of Ukrainian developers have now produced a VR app that is said to help reduce stress.
Stress is fact of life for many people, particularly those who are in high-risk or high-impact jobs. There are many approaches to dealing with stress, and VoxBox is aiming to improve one of them by adding VR.
Many people will have heard of the idea of ‘Primal Scream’ therapy, even if it is only due to the band of the same name. Originally developed by American psychotherapist Arthur Yanov, the theory is that screaming and yelling can help disperse stress and improve the mental state.
Developers Yaroslav Ploshko and Alexander Smirnov studied scream therapy and adapted to concept to launch a project named VoxBox. The VR application involves a cloud of particles that look to the user like smoke. Each of the particles react to sound levels, and so the louder the person screams the more of the particles are destroyed, opening op a beautiful image behind the particle smoke.
Alexander Smirnov, creative director, said: “We invite the patient to a soundproof room where he puts on VR glasses with the VoxBox program installed. A calming space on the shore of the ocean is covered with dark smoke, which can only be dispelled by crying. A person shouts, and space starts to change: dark background is replaced by light, and when a person is done screaming the screen is completely cleared – patients find themselves on the ocean shore.”
Yaroslav Ploshko of CMS Ventures said: “We are negotiating to test the VoxBox for the rehabilitation of the military, refugees, we see great prospects for fighting PTSD syndrome, knowing how much military forces are working with virtual reality in this direction.”