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Tuesday, November 22, 2016


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I think title should read as a question
"Virtual Reality for people living with dementia?"
And I speak as a full time carer for my Father who died from Dementia a year back. As I remember, he was for the last two years of his life in a constant state of hallucination on a level with any LSD trip,unsure where he was, who he was, who I and the rest of the family were etc. He was also massively emotionally unbalanced, and the least small thing would tip him over the edge into paranoia, obsessive or aggressive behavior.
This video reminds me a little of explorers showing mirrors to primitive tribes. As if older people were going to react any different to the rest of us when first confronted with VR.
Personally I would be concerned about the elderly people in the video who were emotionally effected by the experience, their emotions are infinity more fragile and deeply effecting than younger people.
If this was to become some kind of new therapy for dementia then I would hope that it has long and rigorous medical trials.


VR is the very last thing people with Dementia need. In fact exposing them to it is or borders on negligent.

Han Held

I'm not an expert on this, but my father and grandmother both suffered from dementia, and based on that I tend to echo Melponeme and JohnC's concerns.

When someone already has a tenuous grasp on reality, you want to help them ground and orient; you don't want to add to the confusion.

And adding a social component sounds horrible to me unless it's people who already know each other. If they don't, you're heaping confusion on top of confusion.

Amanda Dallin

VR has a lot of potential for the disabled and SL has been a huge benefit for disabled people including myself. Dementia is an entirely different situation.

Throwing people who are already confused about their reality into virtual reality will just make things worse. Many with dementia are already in their personal virtual reality. They don't need VR, they need to connect with reality for as long as possible.


"Throwing people who are already confused about their reality into virtual reality will just make things worse. Many with dementia are already in their personal virtual reality. "

Unfortunately, I think this is the point. This is what they want, to test the threshold on people with little to no clear track on reality. Once the pressure points are determined, it will be used on people who aren't suffering from dementia.

New Mass Media propaganda folks. That is what it is.

If you want to get crazy conspiracy..you can call it MK Ultra. Which is just a really fancy, dramatic term for propaganda techniques.


well yes I did get flashes of Alex tied to the theater chair in a Clockwork Orange. I can just imagine the misuse of VR in old peoples homes. Leaving them for hours in VR, and who would know, because the elderly feel sick all day every day, so they would not even know the difference if they were disorientated or had motion sickness. This seems to me a rather dangerous path to start down. Although for recently retired people who are relatively healthy, I would recommend something such as SL for sure, I know of many people who have benefited immensely from the ability to socialize in a virtual world when unable to get round in the real world. In fact I believe that virtual worlds are far more relevant to mature people than young people. young people should be living real life.

sirhc deSantis

Sounds more like a pitch to ElderCare Inc to buy a few warehouses full of unsellable VR tat/diving helmets.
Even leaving aside what we already do to our Beloved Elders. Whats that word again - ah yes neglect.

Clara Seller

Let's hope they find a chemical cure for dementia before we get old enough to have our loved ones make us do tricks.

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