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Effects of too much noise

A number of physiological changes occur due to noise exposure including an increase in BP.

health and fitness Updated: Jun 07, 2003 19:13 IST

Auditory fatigue

This happens when we are exposed to noise much higher than normal speech level - at 90 db, especially when frequency is greater than 4000 Hz. There might be whistling or buzzing in the ears.


Hearing loss happens if one is continuously exposed to sounds at 100 db. A victim is sometimes unaware of the fact that he is losing his sense of hearing. Temporary hearing loss occurs when exposed to a specific sound. This may be for a period of 24 hours. After this the victim regains his ability to hear.

Non auditory effects

The non-auditory effects are many and affect all of us.

Speech Interference: Noise interferes with speech communication. Noise between 300-500 Hz range interferes with speech communication.

Annoyance: This is a psychological reaction. Some people have a greater tolerance for noise and some have less. Neurotic people are more sensitive to noise.

Efficiency: Where more concentration is required, low level of noise is preferred.

Physiological effects

A number of temporary physiological changes occur due to noise exposure. There is an increase in blood pressure. There is a rise in intercranial pressure. Heart beats faster,. You breathe faster and sweat more. Giddiness, nausea and fatigue may also occur. Noise interferes with sleep. It has also been observed to interfere with vision.


First Published: Jun 07, 2003 19:13 IST