Navigation Links
Everyday Noise Levels May Affect the Heart
Date:5/9/2013

By Amy Norton
HealthDay Reporter

THURSDAY, May 9 (HealthDay News) -- Even the minor noise that fills everyday life, from the ring of a cell phone to the conversation that follows, may have short-term effects on heart function, a small new study suggests.

In the study of 110 adults equipped with portable heart monitors, researchers found that people's heart rate tended to climb as their noise exposure increased -- even when the noise remained below 65 decibels. That's about as loud as a normal conversation or laughter.

There was also a negative impact on people's heart rate "variability" -- a measure of the heart's adaptation to what is going on around you. Greater variability in the interval between heartbeats is better. When people are relaxed, the space between heartbeats is usually a bit longer as they exhale, and shorter as they inhale.

When people are stressed, however, some of that natural variation is lost. And studies have linked lesser heart rate variability to an increased risk of heart attack.

So does all of this mean you need to wear earplugs to protect your heart? Probably not, experts say.

For any one person, the effects of everyday noise on heart function may be small, said Charlotta Eriksson, a researcher at the Karolinska Institute, in Stockholm, Sweden. Eriksson was not involved in the study.

But since we are all exposed to noise, even a minor effect on heart health could be important on the broad "population level," said Eriksson, who has studied the effects of loud traffic -- from roads or airports -- on people's blood pressure and heart function.

Research has consistently found links between loud workplaces and an increased risk of heart disease, said Dr. Wenqi Gan, a researcher at North Shore-LIJ Health System's Feinstein Institute for Medical Research, in Manhasset, N.Y.

The evidence is more mixed when it comes to "community noise," like traffic sounds, said Gan, whose own research has found a connection.

He said the mixed results may be because it's difficult to weed out the effects of community noise on individuals. You might live in a noisy section of a big city, but have good, sound-muffling windows, for example.

"And some people are more sensitive to noise than others," Gan said. If noise affects the heart by stressing people out, he said, then your personal sensitivity to it would be important.

The new findings, reported in the May issue of the journal Environmental Health Perspectives, are based on 110 adults who wore portable devices that measured their heart activity and noise exposure during their normal daily routines.

What was "interesting," Eriksson said, is that lower-level noise seemed to curb activity in the parasympathetic nervous system -- the branch of the nervous system that acts as a "brake," lowering heart rate and relaxing the blood vessels, for example.

Louder noise, meanwhile, seemed to rev up the sympathetic nervous system -- the branch that boosts heart rate, constricts blood vessels and otherwise sends us into "fight or flight" mode.

The value of the findings is that they suggest a biological reason for why noise has been linked to ill heart effects, said Alexandra Schneider, one of the researchers in the Institute of Epidemiology at Helmholtz Zentrum Munchen, in Germany, who worked on the study.

"Our main focus was to find a possible mechanism that could be responsible for the observed health effects in other studies," Schneider said.

The study was not designed to offer people advice on how much noise is "bad" for their hearts, she said.

Gan agreed. "This study is a first step in exploring the underlying biological mechanisms for the association between noise exposure and cardiovascular disease," he said. "We need more studies like this."

A big question, said study author Schneider, is whether the short-term effects of noise, repeated over time, ultimately affect heart health -- particularly for people who already have chronic medical conditions.

Although the study tied increased noise exposure to a rise in heart rate, it did not establish a cause-and-effect relationship.

More information

The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency has more information on noise pollution.

SOURCES: Alexandra Schneider, Ph.D., M.P.H, senior scientist, Institute of Epidemiology II, Helmholtz Zentrum Munchen, Germany; Wenqi Gan, M.D., Ph.D., Feinstein Institute for Medical Research, North Shore-LIJ Health System, Manhasset, N.Y.; Charlotta Eriksson, Ph.D., environmental epidemiology unit, Karolinska Institute, Stockholm, Sweden; May 2013 Environmental Health Perspectives


'/>"/>
Copyright©2012 ScoutNews,LLC.
All rights reserved  

Related medicine news :

1. Older adults memory lapses linked to problems processing everyday events
2. Mesothelioma Victims Center Is Now Open Everyday To Ensure Victims Of Mesothelioma Get Instant Access To The Nation's Most Skilled Mesothelioma Lawyers And Law Firms
3. Everyday Activities May Have Same Health Benefits as Going to Gym
4. Everyday Vitamin Extends Complimentary U.S. Shipping on Orders of $50 or More Through End of January
5. Everyday Vitamin Adds Nature Made’s Odor Control Garlic Dietary Supplement to Product Shelves and Online Inventory
6. Everyday Vitamin Adds Jarrow Formulas Products to Supplement Roster
7. Everyday Vitamin Nutrition LLC Expands Offerings to Bring 100% Natural Cosmeceutical and Beauty Products to Customers
8. EverydayVitamin.com Now Carries Enzymatic Therapy’s® Cherry Fruit Extract for Joint Health
9. Everyday Vitamin Nutrition LLC Carries Now Foods® New Sports Nutrition Products for Body-builders and Sports Enthusiasts
10. Everyday Vitamin Solidifies Position in Men’s and Women’s Everyday Health with Nature's Way Alive!® Whole Food Energizer Suite of Supplements
11. EverydayVitamin.com Carries New Functional Food Potato Protein Isolate for Weight Loss Management
Post Your Comments:
*Name:
*Comment:
*Email:
Related Image:
Everyday Noise Levels May Affect the Heart
(Date:5/2/2016)... ... May 02, 2016 , ... MedaCheck, a leading medication ... outcomes, has announced its partnership with GrandView Health Services. , With decades of ... counter and prescription drug pharmacy services to thousands of residents. Serving Indiana, Ohio, ...
(Date:5/2/2016)... TN (PRWEB) , ... May 02, 2016 , ... ... and behavioral health services, today announced the opening of Twin Lakes Recovery Center. ... will be Summit’s first in the state. The residential facility is set ...
(Date:5/1/2016)... (PRWEB) , ... May 01, 2016 , ... Women's Excellence ... Essential Oils and taught by Patti Dolan, a Young Living Gold Member. , The ... 6:30pm - 7:15pm followed by a small intro to the Oils that can benefit ...
(Date:4/30/2016)... (PRWEB) , ... May 01, 2016 , ... Serenity Recovery, ... to rehabilitation, has produced a new video that focuses on one of the more ... recent sessions and clips from interviews with a participating patients and the Yoga class ...
(Date:4/30/2016)... , ... April 30, 2016 , ... ... Boise, President and CEO of EMED, today signed a multifaceted agreement which will ... and the Northern Caribbean University Department of Natural and Applied Sciences, Allied Health ...
Breaking Medicine News(10 mins):
(Date:4/28/2016)... April 28, 2016  Marking its one year ... and ovarian cancer risk test, Color Genomics ... genes that highly impact the most common hereditary ... the Color Test analyzes hereditary cancer risks for ... uterine cancers. The Color Test is physician ordered ...
(Date:4/28/2016)... YORK , April 28, 2016 ... online consumer insights on healthcare, announced today that it ... their report Cool Vendor in Life Sciences, 2016, ... April 15, 2016.  The report focuses on life-science- oriented ... gain insight from patients and doctors, confirm medication ingestion, ...
(Date:4/28/2016)... April 28, 2016 Oramed Pharmaceuticals Inc. ... pharmaceutical company focused on the development of oral drug delivery ... upcoming PIONEERS 2016 conference, presented by Joseph Gunnar ... New York . Nadav Kidron , ... conference. Presentation Details:   PIONEERS ...
Breaking Medicine Technology: