VR Side Effects: Risks and Dangers of Virtual Reality Abuse
The side effects of VR on your body can be very unpleasant. You can feel Nausea, dizziness, vision problems, and even epilepsy. So, discover the risks and dangers of the prolonged abusive use of virtual reality.
The virtual reality is a fabulous technology to escape from the real world. And it’s possible to explore the infinite world of the imagination. It can be tempting to extend the enjoyment by staying immersed in VR, and sometimes more than that for some reasons. As a reminder, manufacturers like Oculus and HTC recommend taking at least a break of 10 to 15 minutes every 30 minutes. However, misuse of virtual reality headphones can cause side effects on your body. Here are some of them.
VR side effects: nausea
Many people are unable to try a virtual reality headset without feeling nauseated quickly. Technological advances over the last few years have mitigated this phenomenon, but many sensitive people are still suffering the consequences.
Nausea is mainly caused by motion sickness ( motion sickness ) in the most intense experiences. It can also be caused by the sim sickness (simulator sickness)that occurs when vision and hearing perceive elements that the other senses cannot detect. After a while, this neural desynchronization can cause nausea.
The risk increases with the time spent in VR. In fact, if you start to feel nauseated, the best solution is to take a good break.
VR side effects: epileptic seizure
Approximately 1 in 4,000 people may have an epileptic seizure when confronted with light flashes. These crises can be caused by television or video games. Of course, virtual reality can also be a trigger.
VR helmets manufacturers, therefore, recommend that people with epilepsy avoid using their equipment. However, it is impossible to know if one is epileptic before making the first crisis.
The likelihood of having an epileptic seizure increases, however, with time spent in the RV without pausing. It is therefore again recommended to take regular breaks. Otherwise, you may suffer the same fate as this VRChat user who had an epileptic seizure while wearing a combination of motion tracking.
VR side effects: loss of orientation in space
When installing the various VR headsets, users are always asked to define an apparent play area. For a good reason, once in virtual reality, you risk tripping or bumping, and the consequences can be severe, even tragic.
The most impetuous of you will tend to ignore these recommendations, confident of being able to memorize the location of potential obstacles scattered throughout the room. In reality, after thirty minutes, a VR helmet user loses their sense of direction in the physical space around them. You will not know where you are in your room, and you may be injured.
VR side effects: vertigo
If you are dizzy in the real world, you are likely to experience the same annoyance in virtual reality. Experiences of flying, climbing highs or falling at high speeds will be a nightmare for people who are prone to vertigo.
Even if you are not concerned with this disorder usually, an excess of virtual reality can cause vertigo. The various VR helmet manufacturers recommend that you immediately remove your helmet and pause if you feel this way.
VR side effects: dry eye and vision problems
Prolonged use of virtual reality can cause dry eyes and other vision problems. For example, by removing a VR headset after a long time in virtual reality, it is possible to see blur for a few moments. This sensation is similar to the effect felt when trying on the glasses of a shortsighted person, for example. She can go so far as to cause a migraine.
The solution to avoid this inconvenience is to take breaks regularly. It is also essential to adjust the focus of the virtual reality headset when possible. To prevent the problem of dry eye, also remember to hydrate yourself.
Of course, these side effects depend on the helmet model used. A VR headset with a poor quality screen, with a weak definition, is more likely to cause eye fatigue or a migraine.
Some experts believe that virtual reality could have long-term effects and impact the ability of eyes to change their focus between near and far objects. However, VR is a technology that is too recent to draw such conclusions.
VR side effects: how long can we spend in virtual reality?
After reading this list of side effects and harmful consequences of VR, you probably wonder how long you can spend in virtual reality. That is a question that is very difficult to answer objectively.
The maximum time that can be spent in the VR depends on each, the helmet used, the computer that runs, and the application launched. The factors are therefore too numerous to be able to define a precise and universal maximum duration.
For information, the record of time spent in virtual reality is held by Jack McNee who spent 36 hours in an RV drawing application. Against all the odds, the person did not experience any of the usual side effects. On the other hand, at the end of his experience, he claims that he no longer feels his body.
Be that as it may, we strongly advise against spending so much time in virtual reality without pausing. Even if you do not feel that you are suffering the adverse consequences at the moment, much more severe side effects can occur in the long term.