MindCotine, the first VR program combining mindfulness practices, psychological therapies and community engagement to combat nicotine addiction, launched its crowd-funding Kickstarter campaign today - on the World Health Organization’s World No Tobacco Day.
MindCotine offers a systemic solution to addiction, which its creators claim to be the first product of its kind on the market. Users are guided through a mindfulness process, a mental state achieved by focusing on awareness on the present moment, and a biofeedback monitoring system that trains users to control bodily processes. By becoming conscious of what the habit represents for each user, they are then able to better identify and take charge of their impulses and behaviour.
The program also provides users with the tools necessary to overcome the cravings and discomforts associated with tobacco withdrawal through a strong community platform with an AI component. Users are welcome to join and practice the skills acquired, as well as support other peers to overcome the source of the addiction.
The system was created by young entrepreneurs from Argentina who realised that the needs for smokers looking to quit for good were not being met. With the premise that smokers do not have convenient tools nor programs handy to treat the actual root of their addiction, the team combined their diverse expertise in the medical and virtual reality fields to engineer an easily accessible mobile application. Within six months from launch, the team was working out of Silicon Valley in preparation for the Kickstarter.
Their solution is currently undergoing validation and trials by a wide array of focus groups at universities around the world, including Menlo College in California, Universidad Siglo 21 in Argentina and Universidad de la Comunicación in Mexico City.