Light mode or dark mode — which is better for your eyes? The answer isn’t so simple. Both screen modes have their advantages and disadvantages when it comes to affecting your vision.
Most smartphones, computers, and tablets provide users with the option of choosing between light or dark screen modes. In the light mode screen setting, the page background is white, while the print is black, or some other color, similar to a book. Dark screen mode is just the opposite, with a dark background and text that’s white or colored.
Light screen mode is the default setting for most computer and mobile devices. However, it’s a simple task to go into your device’s display settings and switch from light to dark. You can switch between the two and determine which mode works for you.
Dark Screen Mode Doesn’t Have the Screen Glare of Light Mode
One of the big problems with light mode is screen glare. Sitting in front of a white screen for long periods of time can result in dry eyes, red eyes, blurred vision, double vision, and other eye irritation. It’s recommended that you look away from the screen periodically to give your eyes a break from the glare.
But is dark mode any better? Dark screen mode uses less battery power than light screen mode, but what about your eyes? You might think that the reduced glare would be easier on the eyes. This may be true, but reading a screen in dark mode can cause problems for your eyes as well.
Readability and Halation in Dark Screen Mode
The screen appears white in light mode because the screen is reflecting light on every wavelength of the color spectrum. Because of this reflection, our irises don’t have to open as wide to absorb the white light coming from the screen. This leaves them in a neutral position, which allows us to see text and other page elements with better clarity.
When you flip this to dark mode, your eyes have to work harder and your irises have to open wider in order to absorb more light. This can lead to an effect called “halation” in which white text letters start to appear to bleed into the dark background, making them blurry and harder to read.
For the most part, light mode/dark mode is a matter of personal choice. Both can cause problems if you stare at the screen for too long. No matter what screen mode you choose, take periodic screen breaks to give your eyes a rest
Screen Mode May Not Be the Cause of Your Eye Problems
If you’re experiencing eye irritation that switching between light and dark screen modes and taking screen breaks doesn’t alleviate, it may be time to see your eye doctor. The symptoms you’ve been experiencing could indicate a more serious eye or vision problem. The sooner these problems are diagnosed and treated, the better.
The Houston eye doctors at Berkeley Eye Center have been protecting the vision health of our patients for over 60 years. We provide patients with the latest and most advanced treatment options, including LASIK eye surgery, oculoplastics procedures, and a large selection of prescription lenses and frames for all occasions. Contact us online or call the Berkeley Eye Center at 713-526-1600 to schedule your eye exam today.