Accession Number:

ADA582787

Title:

Virtual Reality Adaptive Stimulation in Stress Resistance Training

Descriptive Note:

Corporate Author:

ZAGREB UNIV (CROATIA) FACULTY OF ELECTRICAL ENGINEERING AND COMPUTING

Report Date:

2011-04-01

Pagination or Media Count:

20.0

Abstract:

Serious mental health problems in the current large-scale NATO operations underscore the importance of predeployment mental stress resistance program. Therefore, the development of new effective training tools and coping strategies for the minimization of operational stress disorders is extremely important. The concept of closed-loop virtual reality adaptive stimulation VRAS proposed in this paper may strengthen cognitive capacities and cognitive strategies in mission-threatening situations through repetitive delivery of stressful stimuli and simultaneous practice of relevant stress-coping skills. Stimulation training strategy is based on the gradual exposure of trainees to real-life mission-oriented video clips characterized by different stressful context, semantics and emotional properties. These audio-visual stimuli activate a cascade of events in the brain, which evokes various emotional and cognitive reactions in trainees. Their emotional stress response assessment is based on comprehensive physiological measurements and artificial neural network emotional state estimation. The neurobiological objective of such training program is focused on strengthening the inhibition of the amygdala circuitry network response by the prefrontal cortex. The orbitofrontalventromedial prefrontal cortex OFCVMPFC context-dependent regulation and attenuation of amygdala reactivity might be enhanced by learning new cognitive appraisal of perceived threats, which is supported by the VRAS training system. Better regulation of the amygdala by the OFCVMPFC may reduce operational failures and may even decrease severe operational casualties. A stronger inhibition of the amygdala leads to a decreased activation of the hypothalamus and the brainstem nuclei. Therefore, we may expect to observe lowering of the physiological reactivity to stressful stimuli with improvement in the stress-coping skills. The context, semantics and emotional richness of stress exposure stimuli, as well as i

Subject Categories:

  • Psychology
  • Cybernetics

Distribution Statement:

APPROVED FOR PUBLIC RELEASE