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Virtual reality is helping people overcome their fear of heights


WASHINGTON (Circa) -- A new study from Oxford University finds virtual reality is a successful way to help people with a fear of heights conquer it.

Three out of four people who dealt with a serious phobia were able to overcome it.

The phobia, known as Acrophobia, is the most commonly reported phobia. One in five people have some type of fear of heights.

“When I’ve always got anxious about an edge I could feel the adrenaline in my legs that fight/flight thing; that’s not happening as much now…I feel as if I’m making enormous progress, and feel very happy with what I’ve gained,” a participant told The Independent.

Out of the 49 people who completed the VR training, only two people weren't able to finish the therapy because it was too difficult for them, The Independent reports.

Even more surprising was the fact that 34 of the 49 people who participated were no longer classified as possessing a phobia to heights.

“As seen in our clinical trial, virtual reality treatments have the potential to be effective, and faster and more appealing for many patients than traditional face-to-face therapies," Professor Daniel Freeman said.

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