28 OCTOBER 2019
Virtual Reality Experiences by individuals with ASD
“I walked and walked through and around, listening to the gushing canorous voices of feathered creatures, wild things and buzzes!!! Out of nowhere, as in a dream, searching my way out! Suddenly I noticed a dragon fly swooping into my view, which became brighter and brighter, the trees around getting darker and darker under the sunbeam. I followed the dragon fly, it landed on a flower, I creeped up on it and yeey caught it right away…making me impossible to look away!”
The emotion faded out as soon as I took of my headset.
This immersive virtual reality experience was built for the high functional autistic children to improve their emotions and senses. Such approaches to the use of VR for autism spectrum disorder (ASD) have been experimented for more than two decades, with the technology to set up controlled scenarios to study autistic traits. At the same time, VR is used to create role-playing environments for practicing social skills and selfcare skills. Increasingly, however, people with autism use VR to convey their experiences, to raise awareness of the condition and to capture the cognitive and perceptual differences that characterize it. Some experts hope these efforts will lead to new researches and applications.
These immersive experiences are, in many ways, created to reproduce sensations such as sensory overload at a shopping mall, office meeting or family get-together. Some advanced usage of intense movements like jumping, running, climbing etc are being developed now as a part of gaming. It uses special gadgets such as different types of gloves which help in giving more immersive effect like pushing and pulling etc. It accurately mirrors one’s own head movements and hand movements.
Another brain-focused initiative involves the use of eye tracking analytics to help diagnose patients’ concussions and balance disorders. This even helps doctors use the platform’s collection of sensors to easily determine what wearers are seeing and experiencing.
This therapeutic platform helps in user’s rehabilitation, pain distraction, psychological assessment, and cognitive training etc. Such tools will let patients analyze and evaluate their own results, then pass the information back to their doctors.
Tools to help young adults with autism spectrum disorder practice for in-person job interviews, and creating a virtual person-based medical training are also being developed