Status and Patent. We have created a prototype for a wrist-worn device that can monitor and record gestures and motions such as face-touching and body-focused repetitive behaviors (BFRBs) while also providing real-time (haptic) feedback (on the wrist) to the individual to help stop these behaviors. The device is the subject of U.S. Patent Nos. 10,119,807 and 10,520,297.
Description and Usage. This device can monitor face touching and BFRBs, including pulling out hair, skin picking, as well less severe but damaging behaviors such as nail biting, thumb sucking, and nose picking. Immediate, real-time feedback can help people stop touching their face, which has the potential to save lives in situations such as the current pandemic, and to help people reduce BFRBs.
Results and Future. The performance characteristics in healthy volunteers were studied and published (Son JJ et al., “Thermal Sensors Improve Wrist-Worn Position Tracking,” Nature Digital Medicine (2019) 2:15). We are preparing to conduct additional trials to demonstrate the device’s effectiveness at reducing face-touching. The device is currently a prototype, but designed for manufacturing. We are currently seeking opportunities to commercialize for widespread use.