How This Mental Health App Uses VR To Help NSW Vets With PTSD

By Marie-Antoinette Issa
on 26 December 2023

While are a number of mental health apps available, a recent suicide report by the Australian Institute of Health and Welfare (AIHW) – which shed light on the alarming statistics of suicides among Australian Defence Force – suggests the need for a solution that specifically addresses the unique concerns of ADF members.  Mental health expert Edwina Griffin is hopeful of using tech to offer a response. And is currently pioneering a ground-breaking solution to help veterans cope with PTSD and mental health issues through her innovative immersive virtual reality (VR) meditation and mental health app, AtOne.

With statistics show a staggering 107% higher likelihood of suicide among ex-serving females (and a 26% higher likelihood among ex-serving males than their civilian counterparts) Edwina Griffin is collaborating with RSL Lifecare Veteran Services to introduce, develop, and maintain an Emotional Regulation Program tailored for the NSW veteran community, using her cutting-edge app, AtOne.

“AtOne stands out as the world’s first personalised immersive VR-guided meditation app, offering a multi-sensory approach to meditation,” says Edwina. “Users have the freedom to customise each meditation experience, to create a truly tailored and impactful practice. The app, which is compatible with HTC or MetaQuest virtual reality head sets, enables users to immerse themselves in both real and virtual environments, from serene forests to tranquil beaches.”

Notably, prestigious bodies like the Australian Institute of Sport’s European Training Centre have already embraced and integrated AtOne into their programs. Research has consistently shown that VR meditation can effectively reduce PTSD symptoms by calming the sympathetic nervous system, responsible for triggering ‘fight-or-flight’ responses to danger. AtOne specifically targets PTSD, stress, and mental health issues, aiming to not only alleviate symptoms but also build mental fitness and resilience.

By leveraging the power of immersive VR technology, AtOne offers a holistic and innovative approach to mental health care. Users can escape to virtual landscapes, experiencing the therapeutic benefits of nature without leaving the safety of their homes. The app’s flexibility and personalisation make it a versatile tool for individuals seeking relief from the burdens of mental health challenges.”

“AtOne is a beacon of hope, not only for veterans but for anyone seeking a transformative approach to mental well-being,” says Edwina. “It stands as a testament to the potential of technology to provide innovative solutions and exemplifies the positive impact that cutting edge technologies can have on shaping a more resilient and compassionate future for us all,” she adds. 

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