The Dangers of Virtual Reality

Virtual reality, something once limited to science fiction, has now entered the real world. While the possibilities are exciting, people need to be cognizant of the dangers of virtual reality before they play games using VR headsets. The main concern involves people’s vision, but people have also died due to falling over while playing a VR video game. As long as you are aware of virtual reality dangers and the ways to avoid harm, you can have a safe, fun experience with your VR headset.

Falling Over an Object in the Room


A Russian man lost his life due to tripping over a glass table while playing VR. There are several ways to avoid this in your own home. For starters, make sure you clear the space. Remove any tables, chairs and other breakable items from the vicinity. It is also important to remember whether you actually need to walk around for a given game. Watch a live demonstration of someone playing the game online. If the person is not walking, then you can sit down while you play. Many games do not require walking for this exact reason.

Additionally, you want to remove any pets you have from the area. You do not want your cat or dog walking around the room when you cannot see it. Keep them in another room for the time being.

Vision Degradation and Simulation Sickness


Even if you sit down while playing, you need to be aware of the impact VR has on your eyes. Therefore, it is recommended you only spend 20 minutes playing. After that time, you should put the headset down for a while. Go outside to take in some natural sunlight. You should also reorient yourself with your surroundings and check in on your pet.

Too much virtual reality can also lead to simulator sickness and extreme nausea. You should drink at least one glass of water during your break. Your VR game is not going anywhere, and even having breaks of five minutes for every 20 minutes of gameplay will help tremendously.

Walking Into a Wall


You can damage your headset and seriously injure yourself if you walk into a wall while playing. Before starting, you should orient yourself with your surroundings. Walk around the room, seeing how far apart each wall is from each other. This builds up your muscle memory, so you know instinctively when you get too close to something. It is a good idea to play VR with someone else in the room. This person can serve as your spotter to let you know if an injury is imminent.

Upsetting Any Pre-Existing Conditions


You should not play VR if you have heart conditions, psychiatric disorders or vision abnormalities. Pregnant women and senior citizens should avoid virtual reality. It is important to be aware of your body and to stop playing immediately if you develop a loss of balance or involuntarily muscle twitches occur around your eyes.

The dangers of virtual reality are real, but with common sense and foresight, you can have fun without worrying about your well-being. What do you think of VR becoming more prominent in the near future? Share your thoughts in the comments.

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