Science 2 min read

Night Mode Feature Won't Improve Your Sleeping Pattern

tommaso79 / Shutterstock.com

tommaso79 / Shutterstock.com

A recent study suggests that night mode won’t improve your sleeping pattern. Instead, it could hurt your sleep.

In the last decade, the general belief is that blue light from our smartphones and computers can disrupt our sleep. To cut out this troublesome blue spectrum, software developers soon started offering yellow or sepia screen filters.

Now it’s common to find a “night mode” feature in operating systems such as Android, iOS, macOS, and Windows. Also, popular apps now featured a similar dark mode to reduce strain to the eyes at night.

Now, a new study is questioning that common consensus.

According to researchers at the University of Manchester, exposure to yellow light may be confusing our circadian rhythm. So, rather than improve sleep patterns, night mode may actually be harming it.

In a statement to the press, co-author of the study and researcher at the University of Manchester, Dr. Tim Brown said:

“We show the common view that blue light has the strongest effect on the clock is misguided. In fact, the blue colors that are associated with twilight have a weaker effect than the white or yellow light of equivalent brightness.”

Here’s how the researchers arrived at this conclusion.

Why Night Mode Doesn’t Improve Sleep Pattern

For their study, the researchers wanted to explore the influence of specific colors on the circadian system. So, they experimented on mice with altered cone spectral sensitivity.

Thanks to the polychromatic lighting used in the study, the team noted that yellow light had a more significant impact on the rodents’ sleep pattern than blue light. But how?

According to the researchers, our brain read dimmer, bluer light as night time because it resembles the color of twilight. And this signals the body to go to sleep.

On the other hand, brighter, warmer colors are reminiscent of daylight, and it tells the body to stay awake.

The researchers noted that bright lights have a more significant impact on sleep than the color. So, rather than switch on the night mode on your device, consider reducing brightness levels.

Our findings suggest that using dim, cooler, lights in the evening and bright warmer lights in the day may be more beneficial,” says Brown.

Read More: How Alcohol, Caffeine, and Nicotine Affects Sleep Duration

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Sumbo Bello

Sumbo Bello is a creative writer who enjoys creating data-driven content for news sites. In his spare time, he plays basketball and listens to Coldplay.

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