In the midst of all the holiday shopping going all around the world, one item of note will probably be purchased to be given to a number of delighted kids on Christmas morning - that is, the immensely popular Nintendo 3DS (or any of its various iterations)
However, according to findings by French health and safety agency, ANSES, children under the age of 6 should not be exposed to stereoscopic 3D images, such as ones the Nintendo 3DS' 3D technology and 3D televisions provide, due to the potential of impairing the health and development of their vision.
ANSES states the reasons for this recommendation stems from a particular process in the brain called "vergence-accommodation conflict," that occurs during the brain and visual system's interpreting of stereoscopic 3D images.
In most adults, the effects of this conflict manifests as tired eyes or slight headaches, however, for children under six (who are still very much in physiological development), the task of focusing on the 3D illusion the Nintendo 3DS' visual effects provides could be both damaging their eyes and vision as well as imprinting bad visual habits on kids' brains.
Furthermore, the French body stated the kids under the age of 13 should make sure to use the 3DS' effect in moderation.
Naturally, Nintendo issued an official statement in response to ANSES’ findings, stating that the company has previously recommended that younger children should not use the Nintendo 3DS’ 3D feature at all, pointing to both the 3D slider on the 3DS and their 2DS product as alternatives.