The Influence of the VR Program for the Correction of Nyctophobia on the State of Anxiety in Adolescence

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Abstract

The article presents the results of an experimental study of the level and severity of anxiety under the influence of a VR program for the correction of nyctophobia. The experiment involved two independent groups of respondents in different conditions of working with the VR program. In the first group, the work was carried out in a lighted room, in the second in the dark. Before and after exposure, the level and severity of anxiety were diagnosed in both groups, as well as the severity of states of well-being, activity and mood (WAM) in the second group. Since the groups differed statistically in all studied parameters, comparisons were made only within the groups. The use of the Wilcoxon T-test made it possible to conclude that there was a significant change in the severity of anxiety after working with the VR program in participants with a “low level” of anxiety in both the first and second groups. A significant decrease in anxiety occurred in the group of participants who reported that they were afraid of the dark (n=7). This group was characterized by "low" and "medium" levels of anxiety. There were no statistically significant changes in SAN scores. This result is explained by the fact that a one-time and short-term impact of the used VR program for the correction of nyctophobia is not a factor in changing well-being, activity and mood, but it is a factor in changing the severity of anxiety.

General Information

Keywords: virtual reality, anxiety, fear, phobias, nyctophobia, corrective VR programs

Journal rubric: Psychology of Digital Reality

Article type: scientific article

DOI: https://doi.org/10.17759/exppsy.2023160205

Funding. The study was carried out within the framework of the state order of the Ministry of Education of the Russian Federation No. 073-00110-22-02 dated 04/08/2022 "The impact of high-level virtual reality technologies on mental development in adolescence".

Received: 07.12.2022

Accepted:

For citation: Anikina V.G., Khoze E.G. The Influence of the VR Program for the Correction of Nyctophobia on the State of Anxiety in Adolescence. Eksperimental'naâ psihologiâ = Experimental Psychology (Russia), 2023. Vol. 16, no. 2, pp. 68–86. DOI: 10.17759/exppsy.2023160205. (In Russ., аbstr. in Engl.)

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Information About the Authors

Veronika G. Anikina, PhD in Psychology, Associate Professor, Chair of General Psychology, Institute of Experimental Psychology, Moscow State University of Psychology and Education, Moscow, Russia, ORCID: https://orcid.org/0000-0002-7987-6595, e-mail: vegav577@mail.ru

Evgeny G. Khoze, PhD in Psychology, Senior Researcher, Institute of Experimental Psychology, Moscow State University of Psychology and Education, Head of the Laboratory of Experimental and Practical Psychology,Associate Professor, Department of General Psychology,Moscow Institute of Psychoanalysis, Moscow, Russia, ORCID: https://orcid.org/0000-0001-9355-1693, e-mail: house.yu@gmail.com

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