Video | Business Headlines | Internet | Science | Scientific Ethics | Technology | Search

 


A new voice for schizophrenia

A new voice for schizophrenia


Personal circumstances inspired a Victoria University of Wellington student to invent new technology that helps family members of people with schizophrenia understand what it’s like hearing voices.

Me_04As part of her Master’s in design innovation, Sarah Mokhtar has spent the last year developing a downloadable app and wearable technology scarf that allow people to hear voices and understand what that experience is like.

In her teens, Sarah, who has an older sister with schizophrenia, attended a workshop which involved listening to a simulation of voices heard by a schizophrenic person. “I wanted to understand what it was like for my sibling to live with voices and also to help other people in the same situation as me.”

Sarah set out to create an extension of what she had heard at the workshop, partnering with the organiser during her Master’s year to develop new devices that can deliver a more accurate experience of a schizophrenic person's life.

“I started thinking about what we wear every day and came up with the wearable technology scarf. When it was done, I wanted to make it more accessible. The age group I’m marketing to are technology savvy, so creating an app was a natural fit.”

Earlier this year, Sarah entered the scarf into an exhibition called Mental Blocks, an art initiative organised by mental health awareness group Changing Minds, to encourage discussion. “There was great response from people in the mental health community who were particularly interested in how it could help with education in schools.”

The scarf and app respond to the environment and create a distracting experience for users as they go about their everyday activities. Until now, says Sarah, there hasn’t been any resources for siblings and family members to understand what it’s like to hear voices.
To appreciate its full effect, Sarah wore the scarf around Wellington for a day.

“It was much more difficult than I anticipated, to the point where I actually avoided conversations with people because I didn’t want to have to cope with voices talking to me while trying to communicate normally,” she says.

“The biggest change I’ve seen in myself through this project is my appreciation for my sibling. I want to be more involved in her life now. For me to want more contact with my sister and have a relationship I felt like I lost, is a significant change.”
Ends

© Scoop Media

 
 
 
 
 
Business Headlines | Sci-Tech Headlines

 

Finance: Major Campaign To End "Gross Overtaxation Of Savings"

The campaign – which includes a special web site through which New Zealanders can e-mail their own and other MPs and party leaders – is backed by Age Concern, Consumer NZ, the Financial Services Council and the Taxpayers’ Union. More>>

ALSO:

Scoop Business: Leighton-Led WGP To Build, Manage Transmission Gully

The Wellington Gateway Partnership, led by a unit of ASX-listed Leighton Holdings, has won the $1 billion contract to build the Transmission Gully road north of Wellington. More>>

ALSO:

Gareth Morgan: The Government’s Fresh Water Policy – Revisited

Fresh water quality is the latest area to be in the sights of Gareth Morgan and his research organisation The Morgan Foundation... They found that the fresh water policy was a bit murkier than the Environment Minister let on. More>>

ALSO:

Interest Rates: RBNZ Hikes OCR To 3.5%, ‘Period Of Assessment’ Now Needed

Reserve Bank governor Graeme Wheeler raised the official cash rate as expected, while signalling a pause in rate hikes to assess the impact of moves so far this year. The kiwi dollar sank after Wheeler said its strength was “unjustified” and that the currency could have “a significant fall.” More>>

ALSO:

Fonterra: Canpac Site 'Resize' To Focus More On Paediatrics

Fonterra is looking at realigning its packing operations at Canpac, in the Waikato, to focus more on paediatric nutritionals... The proposed changes could mean around 110 roles may not be required at the site which currently employs 330. More>>

ALSO:

Scoop Business: Postie Plus Brand Gets 2nd Chance With Well-Funded Pepkor

The Postie Plus brand is getting a new lease of life after South Africa’s Pepkor bought the failed retailer’s assets out of administration and said it will use its purchasing power to reduce costs of stock and fatten margins. More>>

ALSO:

Get More From Scoop

 
 
Computer Power Plus

Standards New Zealand

Standards New Zealand
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Sci-Tech
Search Scoop  
 
 
Powered by Vodafone
NZ independent news