Feature: Please Read This Before You Play the PS VR for Your Eye Health


I get it. The PlayStation VR is almost upon us and it’s looking like it will introduce a new aspect of gaming to the masses. Unfortunately, I know my fellow gamers well enough that a lot of us are going to binge play the peripheral to high heaven. Myself included. RIGS here I come!

 However, please be advised there is a reason the launch titles are under three hours long. After all, completing Batman: Arkham VR one hundred percent will take two and a half hours tops. The PS VR’s screen within the headset is literally inches from your eyes. If you’re an avid reader who has glasses, you can probably see where I’m going with this.

Don’t worry this won’t be a long article detailing the science of what I’m about to tell you. Essentially, if you look at something very close, for an extended period of time most days, then your iris will be very constricted. In other words the black part of your eye will be small a lot of the time. For those that don’t know, the iris acts as a light bouncer within your eyes. It determines how much light it allows you to register. So when it’s brighter out the pupil will constrict while when it’s dark out they’ll dilate to allow more light in. This is where having things close to your eyes constantly comes into play.

When you have something very close to your vision for so long, it will make it difficult for your pupils to expand and contract. Kind of like a muscle tendency. If you don’t work out your muscles, you won’t develop them. When your pupils have trouble expanding and contracting, you’ll probably be diagnosed as near or farsighted. In this case nearsighted. The PS VR screen is so close to your eyes that if you use it uninterruptedly for as long as you normally play games, expect to be wearing glasses within a few years. The iris is unable to allow more light in because they’ve become accustomed to the VR screen. It’s right next to your eyes which doesn’t require a lot of light to register within your vision. So the pupil has no reason to expand and let more light in regarding everyday situations. If this happens you’ll have a good deal of trouble seeing things that are farther from you rather than closer to you.

You’re probably running in a circle wondering if joining a Satanic cult will help you with your issue by now. Maybe a bit of screaming too. Luckily, there’s an incredible and simple solution to this. If you’re playing the PS VR for longer than an hour, take a break and look and focus on something that is far away from you for a few minutes. A window will probably provide the best opportunity. This will flex your iris’ capabilities and prevent you from needing prescription glasses. At least until old age gets a hold of you. Sorry, nothing I can do about that.

UPDATE: If you read the PlayStation Blog’s Ultimate FAQ about the PS VR, you are free to do as you wish as this has always been the case. I will follow the sciences of anatomy and simply flex my eye’s iris’ periodically while playing.

Kyle lives and breathes PlayStation. Ever since the Crash Bandicoot days of old to the *insert current popular game here* of new. If you want a useless factoid about any PlayStation game, Kyle will gleefully provide.

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