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The effects of video gaming on vision

1 May 2007


Prolonged periods of playing games on laptop computers have been shown to cause nearwork-induced transient myopia (NITM), a temporary form of nearsightedness, with associated transient blur. Ocular dryness has also been shown to contribute to subjective reports of blurred vision that fluctuates with blinking. It has been further established that attention and fatigue can affect the tonus of accommodation. This study was designed to evaluate what effect playing video games on a large projection screen at a distance of 6m for a prolonged period would have on refractive status, visual acuity and ocular comfort. Visual acuity, refractive status and ocular comfort were assessed pre- and post-task during the study. Static refractive measurements were taken using a Grand Seiko WR- 5100Ka autorefractor. Ocular comfort was assessed by use of a modified DEQ dry eye questionnaire. A statistically significant loss of binocular visual acuity of 0.02 logMAR units was noted immediately post-task. These findings suggest that prolonged periods of playing video games can cause a temporary slight decrease in visual acuity.


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