In this article published in the Independent, Natalie R Catren explores how virtual reality (VR) technology may help autistic individuals. She looks at the research carried out by Dr Newbutt as well as the Blue Room research from Newcastle university on the use of VR to help autistic children overcome phobias. She examines whether the results of the research into these immersive VR experiences can be bridged into the real world and help autistic individuals get a better understanding of the world around them. Likewise, VR can be used to help non-autistic people understand autistic people's experiences, as with the Too Much Information app released by the National Autistic Society, which used in conjunction with the VR headset, gives a taste of how overwhelming being in a shopping centre can be for an autistic person.
Date added: 13 April 2017