virtual reality

for better

aging

Applications for cognitive stimulations, neuropsychological evaluation, behavioural activation and relaxation.

Today, healthcare professionals working with the elderly must deal with complex issues. Indeed, the elderly frequently present mood disorders (depression, anxiety disorders, sleep disorders). These disorders can be aggravated by somatic problems (chronic pain, health problems) and social problems (isolation, feelings of loneliness). The other main difficulty encountered by geriatric caregivers is the cognitive decline, normal or pathological, of the elderly, which, on the one hand, aggravates mood disorders and, on the other, leads to a loss of autonomy.

Virtual reality offers a non-medicated alternative for the management of cognitive and mood disorders in the elderly, thus improving their quality of life without the risks inherent in taking psychotropic drugs.

COGNITIVE STIMULATION

C2Brain is an application that helps cognitive training and is designed to be simple and fun, to facilitate the use by older people. The app has been adapted with regard to motor and sensory impairments linked to aging. As it is guided by the sight and the movement of the head, it becomes very simple and accessible to older people. Memory is a classic game, and now it can be used to stimulate cognitive function and motivate patients.

Neuropsychological evaluation

C2Neuro is an application that immerse the patient into a virtual and interactive supermarket. This application allows the health professional to make a qualitative evaluation of the patient neuropsychological state. The virtual environment reminds the patient of daily life and gives the caregiver the ability to assess the patients executive functions. This environment replaces the “paper and pencil” test into a supermarket in virtual reality for an optimized evaluation. The task in this app that are to be performed by the patient has been created to provide a cognitive overview for the caregiver, in an independent and targeted way. The immersion makes it possible to work with cognitive deterioration and to maximize reeducation. C2Care is a part of the new wave of neuropsychological treatment by virtual reality

Behavioural activation

C2Companion is an application that gives the caretaker the opportunity to socialize with a virtual companion (a dog), and play with it. This application stimulates cognitive functions but also incorporates the benefits of zoo-therapy for the treatment of anhedonia. Thanks to the positive effects of companionship by an animal, and reactivates episodic memory.

Relaxation

The C2Hypno application offers the seniors an opportunity to immerse into relaxing environments that stimulate memory. It’s also a practical solution for insomnia or pain relief. Used by one patient or for a group session, this application offers many opportunities to improve everyday life or the caretaker. Relaxation is a mild and efficient technique relieve stress and restlessness. C2Hypno also allows you to do snoezelen with your patients and/or residents. This solution is adapted to work with different forms of relaxation; mindfulness, progressive muscle relaxation, cardiac coherence and autogenic training.

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c2care r&d

C2Care is a scientific committee and a network of partners. The software for the senior applications is the result of collaborative work between our engineering teams and our research partners. The latter are geriatricians, psychologists specializing in neuropsychology and geronto psychiatrists. Their expertise has guided the creation of the environments and the creation of the treatment programs has been made possible thanks to virtual reality.
The senior pack is a new therapeutic solution for establishments nursing elderly people. Simple and intuitive, the software has been designed to be used by seniors that may experience a loss of autonomy. The nursing staff may easily integrate this new device that enhances the social services of elderly care.

In addition, the software targeted to senior citizens is delivered pre-installed with a headset that is wireless (The Oculus Go), so caregivers can carry and use it easily, without the need for a computer.

HOW TO START A RELAXATION SESSION?

The VR sessions for relaxation are recommended to last 20-30 minutes, in combination with a desired relaxation method (for example cardiac coherence, mindfulness, autogenic training)

  • Possibility of group sessions
  • Possibility of autonomous (wireless) use

WHAT SCIENTIFIC STUDIES ARE THE APPLICATIONS BASED ON?

C2Companion In 2008, Tribet highlighted animal’s impact within a population of cognitive decline, as a vector favoring the emergence of affect and the revival of psychic activity. Libin and Cohen-Mansfield in 2004 showed that this beneficial effect could be obtained with robotic and plush cats when the use of a real animal was not possible.

C2Hypno A review by D’Cunha in 2019 showed that relaxation in virtual reality in the elderly offers an immersive experience leading to deep relaxation, allowing people with reduced mobility to be able to get away from and escape from everyday life.

C2Memory A meta-analysis by Coyle, Traynor & Solowij (2015) concerning the use of cognitive training by computer and in virtual reality, showed an improvement in cognitive performance in different cognitive domains such as attention, working memory, executive functions, overall functioning, memory, processing speed, visuospatial skills and verbal fluences.

C2Neuro Working the tasks of daily life increases the autonomy of the elderly (Giovannetti et al., 2007; Dechamps et al., 2011). The use of virtual reality in day hospitals makes it possible to recreate tasks of daily life safely (Yamaguchi, Foloppe, Richard, Richard & Allain, 2012)

for who?

For seniors with depressive symptoms, anhedonia, anxiety symptoms and / or cognitive impairment.

WHO SHOULD NOT BE TREATED ?

Virtual Reality is not recommended for:

  • Photosensitive epileptic patients
  • Pregnant women
  • Psychotic patients in crisis

PATIENT ACCEPTANCE?

A literature review by D’Cunha et al., 2019, as well as clinical trials with pilot establishments, have shown that virtual reality is well accepted and appreciated by patients.

WHY VR FOR SENIOR?

Today, more than ever, geriatrics is driven by the need to develop its treatments and therapeutic applications. Faced with ethical and medical dilemmas, EHPADs are lacking alternative solutions. Virtual reality appears to be a relevant response to therapeutic impasses. This science and technology, which is in line with non-medicinal treatments, is viewed with great interest by geriatric professionals. Virtual reality is the most promising alternative to traditional therapies. It generates enthusiasm among researchers and practitioners who want to participate in the therapeutic progress in the treatment of aging processes.

The software contained in the EHPAD pack is the result of collaborative work between our engineering teams and our partners. The latter are geriatric doctors and psychologists specialized in neuropsychology and gerontopsychiatry. Their expertise guided the creation of the environments, made possible by virtual reality. The EHPAD pack is the new therapeutic solution for establishments hosting elderly people. Simple and intuitive, the software has been designed to be used by seniors, even those who are losing their autonomy. The nursing staff will easily integrate this new device that will enhance the medico-social services of EHPADS.

Four therapeutic softwares are present in this pack in order to answer the needs of the senior health establishments: cognitive stimulation, neuropsychological qualitative evaluation, relaxation and behavioral activation. These applications will allow you to integrate virtual reality in the daily life of your residents as therapeutic solutions and animation mediator. Thanks to the multi-headset solutions, you will be able to carry out group sessions. Seniors will be able to benefit from the group dynamics during collective activities in virtual reality (cognitive stimulation, relaxation). Virtual reality therapies are in line with non-medicinal therapies.

WHAT DOES THE RESEARCH SAY ABOUT THIS?

The development of the EHPAD project was based on a clear observation: geriatrics lacks relevant tools to respond to the cognitive, emotional and behavioral declines of elderly people in EHPAD. Drug therapies are used mainly in the management of cognitive aging.

Today, we know that cerebral pathologies are characterized by a multifactorial aspect that this type of approach alone cannot apprehend. Thus, non-drug therapies are increasingly attracting the interest of researchers and practitioners.

Virtual reality offers an innovative and promising alternative to traditional therapies. The current literature not only confirms the good acceptance of virtual reality devices by seniors but also underlines the effectiveness of this technology in the difficulties inherent to aging and the end of life. Based on this observation, we have taken advantage of existing works that have generated significant results to develop our software. The authors who have explored the potential of this technology through their studies have obtained convincing results. Thus, in his qualitative analysis, Garcia-Betances (2015) emphasizes the intrinsic qualities of virtual reality: accessibility, sensory recruitment, fine processing of different cognitive functions, immediate feedback, favored therapeutic engagement and general improvement of quality of life. Optale (2010) demonstrated the effectiveness of virtual reality in improving memory abilities in the elderly. Results confirmed and supported by Man (2011). Wallet et al.(2011) highlighted the effectiveness of virtual reality as a tool for generalizing learning. More recently, D’Cunha (2019) emphasizes the active potential of virtual reality as a mediator to allow the improvement of the quality of life of seniors suffering from cognitive decline.

Current research data has confirmed our desire to follow the line of non-drug therapies by developing virtual reality software dedicated to EHPAD.