updated 7:33 AM MST, Nov 17, 2017

Three-dimensional (3D) films could damage children's eyes

Three-dimensional films, games and images could damage children’s eyesight, according to new research from a French health agency.

The Agency for Food, Environmental and Occupational Health and Safety (Anses) recommends that children under the age of six are denied access to any 3D content and that those below 13 should only be allowed "moderate" exposure to 3D entertainment.

Anses says that processing 3D images requires the brain to observe two images separately and then link them together.

"In children, and particularly before the age of six, the health effects of this vergence-accommodation conflict could be much more severe given the active development of the visual system at this time," the watchdog said in a statement.

In 2011, Nintendo faced accusations that its 3DS handheld console caused health problems, particularly for children. The company’s head of communications, Robert Saunders, even recommended taking breaks or turning the device’s 3D features off during extended periods of play. The company also warned that the device could harm the vision of children under six.

The news comes after rumours emerged that Apple’s next iPhone could feature a glasses-free 3D screen.

Italy has already moved to restrict the use of 3D glasses, after its national health agency warned about the potential health implications of the technology, the BBC reports. However, the American Optometric Association said that no reports of eye damage had been registered by people viewing 3D content.

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