The effects of noise pollution could be a lot worse for us than we may have thought in the past, with new research revealing that noise could in fact make changes in the body on a cellular level, causing a stress response that could elevate the risk of noise-induced heart disease.
Published in the American College of Cardiology journal, the study – carried out by a team of researchers from the Department of Internal Medicine at University Medical Center Mainz, Johannes Cutenberg University – found that there is growing evidence that connects noise from sources like aircraft and road traffic to the development of heart disease.
The researchers concluded that transport noise does indeed contribute to the development of risk factors like diabetes and hypertension, because noise is linked to autonomic imbalance, oxidative stress, vascular dysfunction and metabolic abnormalities.
“As the percentage of the population exposed to detrimental levels of transportation noise are rising, new developments and legislation to reduce noise are important for public health,” Dr Thomas Munzel said.
The team suggested that developing low-noise tyres could help reduce noise, while air traffic curfews could see hazardous noises reduced. Traffic management and regulation was also proposed, but it was noted that other strategies would be needed in the future.
Of course, if the noise levels coming into your house have become unbearable it would perhaps be foolish to wait until the government comes up with a solution to the problem. But the good news is that there is much you can do to help reduce noise pollution at home.
You could, for example, look at having double glazed timber windows installed in Dorset or elsewhere, as double glazing works wonders at reducing the amount of outside noise coming inside. Acoustic glass features panes of different thicknesses, which alter the soundwaves as they come through the window. This is really effective at reducing the amount of noise coming in as well, so if it has become problematic this is something to consider looking into.
Another alternative is to use window film. You simply stick this over your existing windows and this will reduce the ability of the glass to respond to vibrations.
Or you could think about investing in thicker curtains – if you have thin blinds, you shouldn’t be surprised if lots of noise comes seeping through. But thick curtains with good lining can help muffle any sounds from outside.
It would also be worth finding out how old your windows actually are, if they were already installed when you moved into your house. It might be that they’re starting to show their age and need to be repaired or replaced.
If you think this might be the case, get in touch with us here at Box Sash – we’ll be able to come out to you to see if any work needs to be carried out.