Could the Nintendo 3DS have another use besides, well, gaming?
The American Optometric Association thinks so as one of the officials of the organizations has said that the 3DS could be used to identify children who might have vision problems.
Dr. Michael Duenas, associate director for health sciences and policy for the organization said that “The 3DS could be a godsend for identifying kids under 6 who need vision therapy,” The Associated Press reports.
The 3DS which will replace the Nintendo DS handheld gaming console has two screens with one being able to display 3-dimensional images without the need for special glasses.
This 3DS feature is the key to what Duenas says might be a means to detect if a child has symptoms of amblyopia, or “lazy eye”. Other problems which may cause reading difficulties as children grow may also be detected by the feature.
Just how will the 3DS’ feature detect these symptoms? If a child does not see the 3-dimensional image projected by the 3DS’ top screen, there might be reason for concern. If a user also experiences dizziness and discomfort while using the feature, it might also be a sign of vision problems, the AP says.
According to the expert, it is better to detect these difficulties while children are below six years of age because remedies are more effective during this time.
Some experts do not agree, however, as they say that children with lazy eye do not have much depth perception in real-life and may not report not seeing 3D images from the 3DS, reports the AP.
Experts also agree that the use of the device must also be limited by parents like the use of ordinary gaming consoles currently available on the market.