There have been some studies about the effect Virtual Reality for stroke rehabilitation would have, and how it would impact the recovery of arm function, walking speed, independence, and more…
But wait, we’re not going to bog this down with scientific data… you can easily google the referred studies – instead, we’re going to give you a summary of what the studies found out and how that impacts the day to day for people who are rehabilitating from a stroke.
Stroke Rehabilitation: What Are the Challenges?
Well, to give you an overview of the challenges that come with stroke rehabilitation, we’ll give you a rundown:
– Difficulty handling though processes;
– Trouble controlling the body;
– Trouble controlling the senses.
These three things impact a lot of sub-variables and as such hurt one’s life and the quality of it.
Suddenly, activities that should be easy to perform like walking around or even driving can be daunting, and as such therapy is suggested to improve the patients’ independence and quality of life.
What Does Virtual Reality Allow:
To put it bluntly, virtual reality helps patients recover from their strokes by giving them a safe environment to practice, and even motivates the patients to spend more time doing therapy through the use of gameplay mechanics or the gamification of statistics and rewards.
Virtual Reality for Stroke Rehabilitation Study: Here’s the Drill!
There were over 72 studies analyzed which involved 2470 patients on the cross-studies analysis by Cochrane.
The information was from the past year of 2017 so it is still fresh.
Most of the patients were using VR to help with therapy on walking and regaining their motor functions.
The Conclusions: The Good Stuff!
So, as far as testing arm use, the therapy using virtual reality applications didn’t provide meaningful results, which shows if you want to regain your arm’s dexterity you don’t have verified proof that VR is any more effective than any form of therapy.
However, when patients were using VR application therapy, they got a moderate increase in how easy everyday actions were – patients were having an easier time showering, dressing, and stuff like that.
So, even though the study isn’t clear on what does VR for stroke rehabilitation shines the most, it is verified that patients who use it have an easier life and increase in quality of living thanks to the benefits reaped on those day-to-day activities.
In conclusion, adding these benefits to the fact that VR can give people a way to practice and enjoy experiences in a safe environments makes it so that it is a fine choice for any stroke rehabilitation process.
Having said that, it is important to know that some people have a side-effect when using this form of therapy called “virtual reality sickness”, so heads up for that.