April 15, 2010
Children and teenagers may be more susceptible to health issues associated with viewing in 3-D and should be closely supervised when viewing these images, consumer electronics giant Samsung warns.

According to a statement issued by the company:

• Some viewers may experience an epileptic seizure or stroke when exposed to certain flashing images or lights contained in certain television pictures or video games. If you suffer from, or have a family history of epilepsy or strokes, please consult with a medical specialist before using the 3-D function.

• Even those without a personal or family history of epilepsy or stroke may have an undiagnosed condition that can cause photosensitive epileptic seizures.

• Pregnant women, the elderly, sufferers of serious medical conditions, those who are sleep deprived or under the influence of alcohol should avoid utilizing the unit's 3-D functionality.

Watching for problems

Samsung says anyone experiencing any of the following symptoms should stop viewing 3-D pictures immediately and consult a medical specialist:

altered vision;



involuntary movements such as eye or muscle twitching;




cramps; and/ or


Children and teenagers may be more likely than adults to experience these symptoms. Parents should monitor their children and ask whether they are experiencing these symptoms.

Other viewing problems

Viewing 3D television may also cause motion sickness, perceptual after-effects, disorientation, eye strain and decreased postural stability, Samsung warns. The company recommends that users take frequent breaks to lessen the potential of these effects.

If the eyes show signs of fatigue or dryness or if any of the above symptoms appear, viewers should immediately discontinue use of this device and not resume using it for at least thirty minutes after the symptoms have subsided.

Watching TV while sitting too close to the screen for an extended period of time may damage your eyesight. Samsung says the ideal viewing distance should be at least three times the screen height and recommends that the viewer's eyes be level with the screen.

Watching TV while wearing 3-D glasses for an extended period of time may cause a headache or fatigue. If you experience a headache, fatigue or dizziness, stop viewing TV and rest. 3-D glasses should not be used for any other purpose than for viewing 3-D television. Using them for any other purpose (as general spectacles, sunglasses, protective goggles, etc.) may be physically harmful to you and may weaken your eyesight.

Finally, viewing in 3-D may cause disorientation for some viewers. Accordingly, DO NOT place your TV near open stairwells, cables, balconies, or other objects that can be tripped over, run into, knocked down, broken or fallen over.

Guidelines for in-home viewing

• To watch in 3-D mode you need to put the 3-D glasses on and press the power button on top of the glasses.

• Turn off all fluorescent lighting and block sources of direct sunlight before watching in 3-D mode. Fluorescent lighting may cause a flickering effect and direct sunlight may affect the operation of the 3-D glasses.

Despite any apparent problems, 3-D TV seems to be the next Big Thing in consumer electronics.