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Crushing cigarettes in a virtual reality environment




Smokers who crushed computer-simulated cigarettes as part of a psychosocial therapy program in a virtual reality environment had significantly reduced nicotine dependence and higher rates of tobacco abstinence than smokers participating in the same program who grasped a computer-simulated ball, as per a research studydescribed in the current issue of CyberPsychology and Behavior, a peer-evaluated journal published by Mary Ann Liebert, Inc. (www.liebertpub.com). The article is available free online at www.liebertpub.com/cpb.



Crushing cigarettes in a virtual reality environment

Benoit Girard, MD, Vincent Turcotte, and Bruno Girard, MBA, from the GRAP Occupational Psychology Clinic (Quebec, Canada), and Stphane Bouchard, PhD, from the University of Quebec in Gatineau, randomly assigned 91 smokers enrolled in a 12-week anti-smoking support program to one of two therapy groups. In a computer-generated virtual reality environment, one group simulated crushing virtual cigarettes, while the other group grasped virtual balls during 4 weekly sessions. The authors document the results in the article "Crushing Virtual Cigarettes Reduces Tobacco Addiction and Treatment Discontinuation".

The findings demonstrate a statistically significant reduction in nicotine addiction among the smokers in the cigarette-crushing group versus those in the ball-grasping group. Also, at week 12 of the program, the smoking abstinence rate was significantly higher for the cigarette-crushing group (15%) in comparison to the ball-grasping group (2%).

Other notable findings include the following: smokers who crushed virtual cigarettes tended to stay in the therapy program longer (average time to drop-out > 8 weeks) than the ball-grasping group (< 6 weeks). At the 6-month follow-up, 39% of the cigarette crushers reported not smoking during the prior week, in comparison to 20% of the ball graspers.

"It is important to note that this study increased therapy retention. All too often individuals drop out of therapy previous to completion. It will be interesting now to go further and compare this to other popular therapys such as the nicotine patch," says Brenda K. Wiederhold, PhD, MBA, BCIA, Editor-in-Chief of CyberPsychology and Behavior, from the Interactive Media Institute, San Diego, CA.


Posted by: JoAnn    Source




Did you know?
Smokers who crushed computer-simulated cigarettes as part of a psychosocial therapy program in a virtual reality environment had significantly reduced nicotine dependence and higher rates of tobacco abstinence than smokers participating in the same program who grasped a computer-simulated ball, as per a research studydescribed in the current issue of CyberPsychology and Behavior, a peer-evaluated journal published by Mary Ann Liebert, Inc. (www.liebertpub.com). The article is available free online at www.liebertpub.com/cpb.

Medicineworld.org: Crushing cigarettes in a virtual reality environment

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