San Diego doctor helps people face worst fears

Posted at 11:50 PM, Sep 25, 2017
and last updated 2017-09-26 02:50:51-04

SAN DIEGO (KGTV) – A San Diego doctor has used virtual reality to help more a 1,000 people get over their fears.

Dr. Brenda Widerhold, with Virtual Reality Medical Center, says the treatment works for a variety of phobias from flying, heights, spiders and much more. 

Wiederhold says the benefits to virtual reality treatments allow patients to “push the envelope” so they are at least willing to face their fear in some way.

“They may be 90% immersed, thinking ‘I’m on that plane flying’ but part of them knows they’re in the office with me,” she said, “so they go ahead and do turbulence and take off and landings, things they’d never do in real life.”

Wiederhold says after 21 years of treatments, they have a high success rate.

“With specific phobias, its 92%,” Wiederhold said,  “It doesn't work for everyone, but it works for a lot of people.”