There is more than just one type of pollution that can be bad for you. Air pollution can have a devastating effect on our health, and although you may not realize it, noise pollution can too. Here are a few ways that noise pollution can negatively affect your life and your business.
Noise pollution is defined as “the environmental disturbance caused by noise, or noise resulting in feeling unrested for living in the vicinity.” You may not have given much thought to how side conversations affect productivity, or how the busy roadway next to your office affects your employees work, but noise pollution can be a significant problem in the workplace.
Noise Pollution and Your Health
Noise pollution can contribute to multiple health problems. Here are 5 facts about noise pollution that can help you increase productivity and reduce the amount of noise complaints from those around you.
1. Increase of Stress and Unwanted Noises
Loud and unwanted noises trigger a stress response in our bodies, which causes a surge of adrenaline and a rise in blood pressure.
Several studies conducted in the United States have found that working in a high-pressure environment coupled with exposure to noise pollution causes significant stress.
This makes the heart work harder to pump blood, causing blood pressure to rise over time, leading to hypertension and other cardiovascular problems.
Annoyances and distractions while at work or on the road can be just as damaging as noise disruptions to sleep.
You may not realize it, but constant jarring noises can cause stress, leading to high blood pressure, heart disease, cognitive impairment, sleep disturbances and tinnitus.
These facts are found in a study performed by The World Health Organization.
The study also states that overall, western Europeans lose up to 1.6 million years of healthy living annually due to the excessive amount of noise pollution there.
2. There Is A Price To Pay For Noise Pollution
What price is that? $30.8 billion a year, in fact. The World Health Organization in Europe created a 2011 report, Burden of Disease from Environmental Noise1.
They looked at the effect of environmental noise on health including the “cost of lost work days, healthcare treatment, impaired learning and decreased productivity” due to noise. This report focuses on the cost it has all over Europe.
3. Leading Cause Of Hearing Loss
You may think hearing loss is just a part of aging, but that’s not the case. The leading cause of hearing loss is noise. The NIDCD explains that this happens because loud or fast sounds damage the hair cells in our ears that serve to relay sounds to our brain for interpretation. These hair cells cannot be replaced or repaired once they are damaged.
4. Negative Physical and Psychological Behaviors
Physical and psychological behaviors are negatively impacted by noise in several ways. Noise is linked to:
- Increased Aggression
- Decreased Motivation
- Worse Task Performance
- Lack of Sleep
Those affected by hearing loss also tend to withdraw socially and experience psychological issues.
If you’ve ever lived near a construction site, you know that loud noises can keep you up all night. Even just driving past them on the road causes enough of an annoyance, can you imagine living near one?
Living, working, or driving near particularly heavy traffic can also cause the same amount of annoyances and distractions as a construction site. It’s been well documented that lack of sleep leads to a less healthy life.
It’s also bad for business because it can affect an employee’s ability to be productive. A tired employee is more likely to make costly mistakes and can severely compromise efficiency.
5. Diminishing Productivity
Productivity is greatly affected by noise pollution, and it doesn’t take much. Just the sound of someone talking nearby as you work can diminish productivity by up to 66%.
A study conducted by Sound Agency found that when an office implemented sound-masking technology2, there was a 46% improvement in its workers concentration.
Getting Help from Sound Fighter Systems
Our acoustic sound panels and noise barriers are built to help reduce sound levels that can not only benefit businesses but residents alike. Contact us today to learn more on how you can help reduce noise pollution and increase productivity!