There is nothing better than getting back home after a long, hard day at work, and dropping yourself on the sofa to watch some TV or read a book. Or if it is really late, you’ll get into bed and look forward to some restful and much needed sleep.
But what if once you get home you can’t help but hear noises from your neighbours, or annoying sounds from the shop next door, or the constant rumble of traffic in the street?
Sadly this kind of situation is ‘normal’ for many people. Noise pollution is indeed a big problem, and it can be devastating for people living in such a situation on a daily basis. In fact it can greatly affect one’s health in a negative way.
If you live in such a situation, it is critical to consider soundproofing your home. You deserve a home that offers a tranquil environment, not one where you can’t help but end up in a bad mood due to the noise you have to hear. And it is not only about feeling miserable and irritated, but also about actual health problems, that you could end up suffering from as a result of noise pollution.
1. Stress Levels
The atmosphere in your home is directly related to your wellbeing or lack of it. In fact your stress level will fluctuate according to how comfortable you feel in your home.
If you constantly overhear your neighbours, their appliances, the buzzing of traffic, and other forms of noise, you are bound to feel stressed.
If you are suffering from high levels of stress, your immune system could be negatively affected and you will find problems being able to relax. Body relaxation is important, otherwise you end up feeling tense and irritated, and this leads to both physical and psychological problems.
Moreover, if you are feeling stressed out your relationships with your family are also going to be negatively affected as you will be inclined to communicate less effectively and willingly.
2. Concentration & Focus
A noisy environment has a direct impact on your ability to concentrate and focus on a task at hand. Be it a small or a more complicated job, such as trying to study or read, you need to be able to focus.
And if you are constantly over-hearing noises, you are going to fail to concentrate well enough on whatever you are doing. This is even more serious for people who work from home, as their quality of work is going to suffer considerably if their home is noisy due to their outdoor surroundings. If this is the case, you can also use an outdoor soundproofing fence.
3. Emotional Wellbeing
With a tranquil environment, your brain is going to work optimally when it comes to the memory function and being able to learn new things.
On the contrary, this is going to suffer if your house is subjected to noise pollution.
Sleep is critical to one’s health. Consider how one feels in the morning after a night where they had to wake up constantly due to not feeling well, or because the baby spent the night crying.
Now, this one-off situation could be replicated on a daily basis for people who live in a house where they have to suffer from constant noise from their neighbours or outdoor settings.
Lack of sleep, or insomnia, can be extremely unhealthy. Uninterrupted sleep is critical for one’s health. Otherwise they’ll feel fatigued and also potentially suffer from headaches and other health problems. Depression is also directly associated with lack of sleep.
5. Cardiovascular Health
Noise can lead to hypertension, which is related to an elevation in the production of cortisol.
This could lead to negative cardiovascular effects, including high blood pressure, vascular inflammation and related problems.
6. Auditory Effects
Noise naturally also impacts one’s auditory ability. Tinnitus is a common problem that can result from constantly being exposed to noise at home.
High frequency noise can also lead to hearing impairment too. Noise induced hearing loss is common when one has to hear very loud noises such as loud machinery on a repetitive basis.
Soundproofing is the Solution
Considering the above mentioned health problems, on both a physical and psychological level, it goes without saying that it is important to find a solution.
Thankfully nowadays there are various soundproofing methods that can help you reduce noise in your home.
The range of sound dampening materials available on the market vary, and with some research and professional advice from a specialised acoustic consultant, you will be able to ascertain the best soundproofing option for your home.
This will depend on the type and level of noise you have at home, where it is coming from, as well as your home’s setting.
Some of the most common soundproofing materials include acoustic foam panels, mass loaded vinyl sound barriers, mineral wool insulation, soundproof drywall and resilient sound channels.
Soundproofing can help create a quieter environment by blocking as well as controlling noise.
If the main source of the problem is coming from outside, you may wish to consider investing in solid doors, double glazed apertures, and ensure that proper sealing is carried out, to minimise the amount of noise that enters the home from outdoors.
Hanging thick and heavy curtains will also help to block noise. Acoustic fencing around your garden or backyard could also help greatly.
If on the other hand the noise is mainly coming from neighbours, you may wish to apply acoustic panels or foam to the walls, or utilise soundproof blankets or curtains. If the noisy neighbours live beneath you there is also acoustic flooring. Or else, if they live on the floor above you, consider investing in soundproofing materials that can be installed to the ceiling.
As you can see, the variety of soundproof materials is really broad and diversified. There is literally something for every type of situation and sound type and level. All it takes is to make a well informed and careful choice based on your particular case.
But one thing is for sure – soundproofing is truly an investment that will not only make your home quieter but your life considerably better. You will live in an improved indoor setting and benefit from better health and wellbeing as a result!