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Veterans' brains and the positive and negative perceptions of mental health care; realities virtual and otherwise




Gingras, Chelsea, author
Seel, Pete, advisor
Sivakumar, Gayathri, committee member
Snodgrass, Jeffrey, committee member

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The purpose of this study is to identify the benefits of using virtual reality exposure therapy (VRET) to treat veterans who suffer from posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD), and to ascertain the efficacy of the treatment. In order to evaluate VRET as an effective treatment, prior case studies utilizing VRET will be analyzed to answer the research questions through the method of content analysis. Nine case studies were studied and coded for themes revolving around gender, age, education, definition of PTSD, the lapse of time between trauma and treatment, deployment length and location, and type of technology used. Findings across the board indicate that this method of treatment is highly effective and should continue to be utilized by practitioners in the treatment of veterans with PTSD. Specific research questions did not all arrive at conclusive answers, as the amount of data available and studied is limited. Information on gender, age, and education level are not readily available, and this study suggests that further research be completed in these areas in order to better understand and cater to these specific populations.


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