U.S. Navy Looks to iPad App to Fight PTSD

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By: Mel Martin

TUAW

The Office of Naval Research (ONR) in conjunction with the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA) is sponsoring development of an iPad app designed to teach US sailors and marines to understand their responses to stress and manage me them using biofeedback techniques. The system will be tested at the Naval Center for Combat and Operational Stress Control in San Diego next month.

Using only an iPad and a heart rate monitor clipped to an earlobe, the person using the setup will play some games specially designed to help personnel learn to reduce stress.

It’s hoped that the training will reduce the incidence of Post Traumatic Stress Disorder and help service members cope with the challenges of deployment.

An article in Medical Xpress says the program is based on applying past research teaching war-fighters stress management techniques. Figures provided by the military say about 21 percent of military personnel returning from Iraq and Afghanistan suffer from PTSD, which in turn leads to costs of more than a billion dollars in lost productivity and treatment expenses.

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