Virtual Reality May Improve Quality of Life of Hospitalized Dementia Patients, Study Says

Virtual Reality May Improve Quality of Life of Hospitalized Dementia Patients, Study Says
Virtual reality may help improve the quality of life for people with dementia, including those with Alzheimer's disease, by stimulating them to recall past memories, reduce aggressive behavior, and connect with caregivers, a study suggests. The study, “Bring the Outside In: Providing Accessible Experiences Through VR for People with Dementia in Locked Psychiatric Hospitals,” was published in Proceedings of the SIGCHI Conference on Human Factors in Computing Systems. People with dementia slowly start to lose their autonomy, becoming increasingly unable to engage in daily activities and make decisions for themselves. Hospitalization is often required for these patients. However, the environment in a psychiatric hospital can often cause depression or aggression toward the patient's own self or others. Virtual reality in mental healthcare has shown positive outcomes for several disorders, including for individuals with autism and schizophrenia, post-traumatic stress disorder, eating disorders, or different phobias. Researchers at the University of Kent in the U.K. evaluated whether virtual reality could promote the well-being of individuals with moderate to severe dementia living in a psychiatric hospital. The study enrolled eight patients, six men and two women between the ages of 41 and 88 years old, living with dementia. Two of them were diagnosed with Alzheimer’s disease, two with unspecified dementia, two with Huntington’s disease-ass
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