Scientists at the Imperial College London and other European
institutions monitored the blood pressure at 15-minute intervals of 140
sleeping volunteers in their homes near London Heathrow Airport and
three other major European airports.
The study, published in the European Heart Journal, found that
volunteers’ blood pressure increased noticeably after they experienced
a “noise event” — a noise louder than 35 decibels — such as aircraft
traveling overhead, traffic passing outside, or a partner snoring.
The raised blood pressure effect could be seen even if the volunteer remained asleep and so was not consciously disturbed.
The aircraft noise events caused an average increase in systolic
blood pressure of 6.2 mmHg and an average increase in diastolic blood
pressure of 7.4 mmHg.
The World Health Organization defines high blood pressure as 140/90mmHg or more.
Aircraft noise raises blood pressure
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