Background Noise Costs You More Than Just Peace and Quiet

Hello my dear friend,

Today I am sharing an article with you written by Dr. Laura Koniver. She addresses just how much background noise is harmful to our health. It is not just an irritation; noise impacts our health. Where this affects us the most is our heart and blood pressure as it causes increased inflammation in the arteries which in turn increases your risk of heart attack, heart disease, heart failure, stroke and even atrial fibrillation. It also increases your risk for insomnia, metabolic disease and type two diabetes. Wow!!! Dr. Koniver believes that noise pollution should be considered as much a heart health risk as smoking!

Loud noise has been termed noise pollution. Small noises are an issue too. The new term which includes both loud and small noise is Noise Annoyance– which is any noise that increases the rate of chronic, life-threatening health issues.

Noise is rated on a decibel scale; an aircraft taking off is 120 decibels, a car driving by is 70 decibels. Healthy decibel levels are levels below 55. The list of (things) under 55 on this scale include rain at 50, a quiet living room at 40, whisper 30, a ticking of a watch 20, rustling leaves 10, and the threshold of hearing 0. We live in a very loud world. Here is the best part, every 10 decibel increase in noise increases your heart attack risk by 6%. The scale starts at 50.
Normal conversation is a 60, so overtime conversation can contribute to heart health issues. Traffic doubles that and listening to a telephone ring repeatedly increases that even more.

What if you have trouble filtering out sound? Being on the autism spectrum, EMF sensitivity, and tinnitus are three common conditions where individuals are extremely sensitive to sounds.

So now that we know that noise is an issue, how do we become proactive in protecting ourselves and those we love and care about from this health issue?

Here are three steps:

1- Be very protective of your sleep. If you live in an area that is noisy all night, or you are on a busy street, install noise and light blocking curtains. Do not sleep with your windows open. If you have a yard, consider planting a row of trees as a noise barrier. Don’t sleep with the TV or music running, or even a sound machine. Give your brain a break from the onslaught of noise. Wear ear protection when you sleep if that is the only way to have quiet.

2- Wear simple, effective ear protection. Dr Koniver recommends Calmer earbuds. They are soft silicone earbuds that decrease irritating noise while at the same time, help to clarify important noises that you want to hear.

3- Decrease other stressors. Life is a balance; health is a balance. Change the things that you have the ability to change.
Be more mindful of the chemicals you bring into your home that you clean with or wash your clothes with.
Washing your hands throughout the day, and especially before you eat, will help decrease your toxic load.
Eat clean whole foods when you can.
Drink half your body weight in ounces in water every day so your body can rinse out the extra toxins.
Move your body, go for a walk outside in the fresh air.
Read a book in the evening instead of watching TV.
Meditate and practice mindfulness.
Stop multitasking and concentrate on one thing at a time.
Take a calming Epsom salt bath in the evenings before bed.

If this feels overwhelming to you, you can start simply by evaluating how much background noise you are exposed to on a daily basis, and how you can reduce it or protect it with ear protection.

I want to wish you all a very Merry Christmas. May you be safe in your travels and that the time gathering together with others is joyful!

Much Love and Gratitude, Janalee

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