Noise pollution is a modern concern that is getting worse, and affecting millions of people’s lives. A report by National Geographic shows that the most common health problem with noise pollution concerns hearing. Noise-induced hearing loss or NIHL can happen when exposed to loud noises. While this is more likely to be an occupational ailment, it can also occur from regularly being exposed to loud music for example.
Noise pollution affects productivity, concentration, and sleep. It can stem from noisy and inconsiderate neighbors, but it can also just occur from daily activities. Simply doing the laundry, or running certain appliances can add to the overall noise pollution in a home.
Some noises are unavoidable, but there are many ways that reductions can be made. In some instances, annoying noise can even be eliminated.
How bad is noise pollution to your health?
Noise pollution isn’t just irritating, and distracting, it can also be harmful to both mental wellness, and physical health.
According to Brain Facts, noise pollution has been linked to depression, stress, and anxiety. This can then lead to physical symptoms and illnesses occurring.
Noise pollution can result in higher blood pressure, stroke, and heart disease. A lack of sleep caused by noise pollution will also contribute to physical and mental health problems.
How can you reduce noise in workplaces and the home?
Some changes to reduce noise pollution are needed, and fortunately, they don’t all have to be costly or difficult to implement. But they may make a considerable difference to work operations and general wellbeing.
There are tools that show how office noise impacts performance, and this in itself should be a reason for companies to take noise pollution seriously. But, noise can come from the home too. Here are some noise concerns and how to reduce them.
One of the most typical noise problems in a home or office is AC units
In the states, it is said that around 90% of households have some form of air conditioning. While there are countries that have little need for cooling systems, many other regions can be uncomfortably hot. Unfortunately, AC units can sometimes be noisy.
Knowing how to quiet a noisy air conditioner can be handy for reducing noise pollution.
Gurgling, banging, clicking, and humming, are all common noises for AC units to make, along with repetitive and annoying dripping. These can be irritating for residents of homes, and office workers.
Periodic maintenance is one of the better ways to prevent AC units from becoming noisy. Sound blankets are also a handy trick for reducing the noise an AC unit makes. Remember, it may not be just you that your air conditioning is annoying, your neighbors may be suffering too, so don’t ignore the issue.
Other ways to reduce noise pollution
Here are six other tips for reducing noise pollution, especially in the home.
Improve insulation and flooring
You can invest in better soundproof insulation in a home to prevent noise concerns. Wall-to-wall carpeting and rugs will also help to absorb sounds, as will thicker drapes and curtains.
Turn off appliances and move them to other areas
Electrical devices and appliances can make noise. Fridges and freezers hum, washing machines go through cycles with varying degrees of sound, and dryers can also be noisy.
Any device that isn’t being used should be turned off. Extraction fans for example contribute to noise in the kitchen. If they aren’t needed, then turn them off.
Also, consider a new layout for some of your noisier appliances. Can you put the washing machine in the garage for instance?
Fences not only add privacy and reduce noise, but they can also help the value of a home to grow. Therefore, this simple solution to providing a sound barrier can also be a good investment financially.
Although this won’t provide an immediate solution, over time trees will provide not only a way to reduce sound but also add to the tranquility of a garden. Much like fences, trees also add value to a home, but even more so.
Close doors and windows
One of the easiest, and most effective methods for reducing noise is to close windows and doors. However, this may not eliminate loud noises near your home. Perhaps you live near a main road with heavy traffic, or you are in the center of town.
If this is the case, you may need to do something else with your windows than just close them.
Install soundproof windows
Some noises can penetrate a home. These can stop residents from enjoying simple things such as watching TV, and for remote workers, it can impede their performance.
Remote workers need to stop intrusive noise so that they can concentrate. Soundproof windows could be the answer in this case.
Noise pollution can be devastating when it affects home life to the extent that normal habits cannot be enjoyed, and sleep is disturbed. It can impact health in many ways, and it can impede productivity.
Simple things like maintaining appliances such as AC units, and changing worn-out parts, can help to reduce noise. It could make life simply more enjoyable also.