Pervasive Computing Paradigms for Mental Health. 9th International Conference, MindCare 2019, Buenos Aires, Argentina, April 23–24, 2019, Proceedings

Research Article

Testing a Deactivated Virtual Environment in Pathological Gamblers’ Anxiety

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  • @INPROCEEDINGS{10.1007/978-3-030-25872-6_20,
        author={Michelle Semonella and Pietro Cipresso and Cosimo Tuena and Alessandra Parisi and Michelle Toti and Aurora Bobocea and Pier Mazzoli and Giuseppe Riva},
        title={Testing a Deactivated Virtual Environment in Pathological Gamblers’ Anxiety},
        proceedings={Pervasive Computing Paradigms for Mental Health. 9th International Conference, MindCare 2019, Buenos Aires, Argentina, April 23--24, 2019, Proceedings},
        proceedings_a={MINDCARE},
        year={2019},
        month={7},
        keywords={Gambling Virtual reality Anxiety Exposure Psychometrics Gambling disorders Addictions},
        doi={10.1007/978-3-030-25872-6_20}
    }
    
  • Michelle Semonella
    Pietro Cipresso
    Cosimo Tuena
    Alessandra Parisi
    Michelle Toti
    Aurora Bobocea
    Pier Mazzoli
    Giuseppe Riva
    Year: 2019
    Testing a Deactivated Virtual Environment in Pathological Gamblers’ Anxiety
    MINDCARE
    Springer
    DOI: 10.1007/978-3-030-25872-6_20
Michelle Semonella1,*, Pietro Cipresso, Cosimo Tuena1, Alessandra Parisi2, Michelle Toti1, Aurora Bobocea3, Pier Mazzoli3, Giuseppe Riva
  • 1: Istituto Auxologico Italiano
  • 2: Catholic University
  • 3: U.O.S. Dipendenze Patologiche Fano DDP AV 1 - ASUR Marche
*Contact email: semonellamichelle@gmail.com

Abstract

In the last decades the use of Virtual Reality for exposure therapy has become a clinical standard and used in most disorders, including pathological gambling. Nonetheless, previous studies reported that exposure therapy might be not effective if the virtual environments present no interactions or break in presence, among other problems. We hypothesized that a virtual environment representing a gambling place but without lights and sounds or other stimuli promoting interactions, was not effective for gamblers. Thus we tested the anxiety level in a group of 20 pathological gamblers in this lights out virtual environment. Our results shown, by using Bayes Factor, that before and after an exposure to the lights out virtual gambling environments there was no difference in anxiety level. The study shed new light in designing and implementing virtual reality exposure therapy for future clinical applications.