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Is Dark Mode Better for Your Eyes?

February 24, 2022

Between our televisions, phones, tablets, and computers, we’re spending more time than ever looking at screens.

Many of these screens can irritate and dry your eyes because they emit a glare and have “blue light”. To help protect your vision, most smartphones and tablets now feature “Dark Mode”, or a variation of it.

But it isn’t for everyone, and in some cases, it can cause more vision problems than solutions.

Dark Mode is a setting that displays an inverted color scheme - light-colored text and icons on a dark background. Most mobile devices default to Light Mode, in which dark text is superimposed on a white or light background. 

Dark Mode is accessed through your phone's display settings and can be toggled on and off to accommodate the mode you prefer. When turned on, dark mode is displayed across the entire user interface, including apps.

What are Dark Mode’s Advantages?

  • Longer Battery Life: It can extend your battery life by up to 30%, which means you won't need to charge your phone as often. 
  • Lower Exposure to Blue Light: Switching your phone can help reduce your exposure to Blue Light. Blue Light can cause dry eyes, headaches, blurred vision, and can even interfere with sleep cycles.
  • Limit Screen Glare: Viewing your screen in a dark room can cause an irritating glare — an uncomfortable level of contrast between the screen and your surroundings. It will cut the glare from your screen significantly for comfortable viewing.

But Is It Better for Your Eyes?

While the setting has many benefits, it’s not the right solution for everyone. Dark Mode requires your pupils to dilate. When your pupils dilate, your vision becomes less clear, which can make it harder to focus on the screen.

People who have myopia or astigmatism also may experience “halation” a foggy or blurry appearance, with halo effects surrounding words and images.

But opting for Dark Mode can only solve so much. Correcting underlying vision problems is the most important way to ensure your eyes stay their healthiest. Your association and AMBA have an excellent Vision Plan that provides coverage for annual check-ups, eyewear, lenses, and more. Learn more here.

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