It’s Noise Action Week from now until Saturday when we are all asked to be more aware of the impact of loud noise on people’s lives.
Co-ordintated every year by Environmental Protection UK, it is a time to think about the cost of noise to the health and well being of communities and individuals.
Noise in the wrong place and at the wrong time disrupts our relaxation and work and disturbs sleep. Its impact on our health and well being has been recognised by the country’s chief medical officer.
Sound is part of everyday life and keeps our neighbourhoods vibrant. However, too much noise in the wrong place at the wrong time can disturb, annoy and upset neighbours. Government research has found 48% – nearly half of us – feel our home life is spoiled by noise.
This research also found a fifth of people are kept awake by noise at night and many had complained about the noise.
Common noises that disturb, annoy or wake people up are:
- Loud music
- Loud televisions
- Voices – indoors or in the street
- Slamming doors, walking on hard flooring
- Noise from licensed premises
- Noisy pets – barking dogs
- Household appliances – washing machines, dishwashers, vacuum cleaners, fridges/freezers
- DIY/Building work
Noise pollution is now recognised by the Chief Medical Officer in England as second only to air pollution in damaging public health.
She also says noise is very likely the pollutant that has the greatest impact on our quality of life. Surveys have found more than 80% of people are exposed to noise pollution at home and nearly half of people are bothered by intrusive traffic noise in their homes.
“Pollution is like junk food – it doesn’t hit you on the day but it can accumulate and do you harm,” the Chief Medical Officer says. “Noise (and light) both impact on sleep, affecting performance and mental health. Noise in particular is the single largest cause of complaints to local authorities.”
If you are finding it hard to sleep at night because of noise then special earplugs may be the answer. We can supply SleepFit plugs to people who find it hard to get a good night’s sleep. Read more here.