Hospitals are unfamiliar places, alien to most people. That is fortunate, because it means that you have not had the need of any major intervention, or that you have not passed a serious illness. However, like other people who do know, it is normal that the idea of a hospital generates some anxiety, fear, anticipation of what is coming, which usually is an operation or a process not very pleasant.
To end this problem, Virtual Reality is providing good help. It has begun to do so, for example, at Sunnybrook Hospital in Canada, where they have recorded with a 360º camera the experience of a patient who is admitted to a room to be operated on,
In this way, many patients who have never had to undergo an operation, or who do not know and therefore fear any aspect related to a hospital, can check first-hand and through a virtual reality experience how their experience will be, thus losing their fear, and facing it with much more confidence, tranquillity and serenity.
It is understandable that many patients are nervous before undergoing surgery. There are many unknowns and it is an unfamiliar environment. It is now possible to immerse patients in the experience one or two weeks in advance, using virtual reality as part of a new research study.
Stop anxiety thanks to Virtual Reality
Virtual reality is about putting a person in a computer-generated environment or an interactive experience.
This can be done by various methods, one that Simlab IT develops, and precisely the one that Sunnybrook Hospital has used, is to generate an experience by recording with 360º cameras, to generate a Virtual Reality content capable of educating, teaching, etc.
In the case of hospitals, anxiety levels are important because they are related to many negative outcomes, including prolonged hospital stays and increased risk of infection.
This is just one example of the vast potential that comes with virtual reality applications in healthcare. And there are many others that are currently being studied or used.
Alzheimer’s patients can be immersed in virtual reality environments during MRI tests, allowing researchers to see which areas of the brain are activated to aid in diagnosis.
Some burn patients are being exposed to virtual reality applications that immerse them in a cold world of snow and ice, helping to reduce their need for pain medications. Virtual reality can help provide a form of exposure therapy for patients who are afraid of certain places or things. And it is also playing an increasingly popular role in medical education, allowing future healthcare workers to hone their skills in a whole new way.
And the truth is that the sky is the limit in terms of how and where these applications can be used. And with the increase in research in the area-including your preoperative anxiety study-that will only serve to give more weight to this fun approach to technology.
Virtual Reality is changing Healthcare for the Better
Having existed only for the last few years, virtual reality is still considered a vaguely new concept for most people. However, virtual reality is changing the way we live our lives and the way our health systems work. There have already been many ways in which virtual reality has helped the healthcare industry move forward.
Virtual reality has come a long way and we have seen significant improvements and advances in terms of hardware and software. What began as science fiction is now a scientific fact, and virtual reality is fast becoming one of the most exciting advances the healthcare industry has ever witnessed.
Virtual reality science is changing the health care field for the better. While certainly not an exhaustive list, the next few years will no doubt be decisive for the future of virtual reality and its progress in fields such as healthcare, education and training.