Innovative Therapies: A Therapist’s Journey with VR Technology and Amelia 

Meet Nitin A. Lal: Clinical Psychologist and Consultant 

In the heart of New Delhi, licensed clinical psychologist Nitin A. Lal is reshaping the future of mental health care. With nearly seven years of experience and a commitment to innovation, Nitin is Director at Udhyan Mental Healthcare – Unleashing the Potential. He also works as a consultant with Max Healthcare, using VR therapy, powered by Amelia by XRHealth to address a diverse array of mental health challenges.  

Lal works with children, adolescents, and adults, addressing a range of mental health concerns, primarily depression and anxiety-related disorders. He is trained in several different types of therapies and pulls from this expertise to address the individual needs of his patients.  

“I use an eclectic approach. So, it starts with CBT, Cognitive Behavior Therapy, or a bit of Acceptance and Commitment Therapy, DBT, and so on. Of course, VR therapy is a part of these therapies.” 

The Challenge of Treating Phobias Before Amelia 

However, Lal came to realize the limitations of traditional therapeutic approaches, especially when tackling phobias. Encountering many patients with many different types of phobias and anxieties, one of Lal’s biggest challenges was finding an effective way to treat these patients. 

“I used to get many clients who had different kinds of phobias. It could be fear of flying, fear of heights, you know those kinds of fears where I could not take them physically.” 

Choosing Amelia by XRHealth 

Lal needed a way to help address the needs of these patients. Driven by a passion for innovation, Lal’s goal was to incorporate technology-based, evidence-backed therapies into his practice. This vision led to the adoption of VR therapy alongside other advanced techniques like neurofeedback.  

For Lal, VR therapy became a crucial solution, especially for clients with specific phobias like fear of flying or heights. Virtual environments provide a controlled and immersive setting to address these challenges effectively. 

Lal decided to partner with Amelia by XRHealth because of the breadth of the environments and the possibility of doing remote therapy with the platform. However, the onboarding and continuous training after getting started is what truly empowered Lal to maximize the potential of virtual reality therapy in enhancing the quality and effectiveness of mental healthcare for clients. 

“The training, such as the summer school training and all those things have really helped me, and I feel I’ve made a good choice collaborating with Amelia.” 

How Nitin Incorporates VR in His Day-to-Day Practice 

Primarily used for in-person therapy, Nitin uses Amelia by XRHealth to help him treat clients with a range of challenges from phobias to social anxiety.  

He also finds that many of his clients struggle with certain skills such as visualization and mindfulness. Through Amelia, Lal helps his clients learn different mindfulness and relaxation techniques. The guided VR environments also help clients visualize scenarios more effectively. 

He generally begins a treatment plan with a more traditional approach, introducing CBT or ACT techniques. Then he introduces the patient to Virtual Reality to help practice and strengthen the skills the patients are building in therapy.  

But sometimes, patients seek Lal out specifically because he offers VR therapy. 

Treating Patients with VR 

Lal shares the story of a previous patient grappling with a profound fear of solo travel, a necessity for work-related flights. The patient had an upcoming flight for work and needed to get over his fear of traveling alone, fast. Lal and the patient worked together over five VR therapy sessions, gradually going through each step from leaving home, to boarding, to being on the flight.  

After just five VR therapy sessions, Lal’s patient was ready to take the flight and successfully made it to his destination. 

In another case, Lal shares the story of a patient who, post-COVID, had developed social anxiety when facing crowds. The patient would also feel anxious when interacting with people online as well. This patient’s workplace required him to travel and present at numerous events.  

Through VR and Amelia environments, CBT and ACT thought modifications, and graded exposure the client was able to overcome the social anxiety within just eight sessions. Through VR practice, the client was able to use the skills he was learning in real situations. 

Beyond Limits: The Impact of VR Therapy on Nitin Lal’s Practice 

One of the biggest changes Lal has seen is attracting more patients.

“It’s helped me attract good clientele as well because VR therapy is still a new concept in society, but it attracts a lot of people. So people are really curious about it.” 

Before, Lal struggled to help his clients who had various phobias, such as fear of heights, flying, and other phobias that really required exposure to these physical locations. 

“I cannot take my patients on a flight with me to help them with desensitization. And I can say through VR, through Amelia now, I have been able to help them.” 

To any therapist who may be struggling to engage and support their patients with phobias, Lal says, “Have faith in technology and come out of [your] own comfort zones. As I tell my clients– take it as an adventure.” 

You can learn more about Nitin A. Lal and Udayan Mental Healthcare – Unleashing the Potential through their website, Facebook, and Instagram

Discover VR Therapy: Dive Deeper with a Personalized Consultation 

For many therapists like Lal, getting their patients into the specific immersive environments necessary to face their fears is nearly impossible—without a tool like Virtual Reality  

Lal’s patient’s journey from fear to triumph is just one example of the groundbreaking successes achievable through this innovative approach. Interested in exploring how VR can fit into your practice?  

Book a call with a VR Specialist to learn more.