Living Near Busy Streets May Increase Stroke Risks

Living near noisy streets may increase stroke risks

Not only could living on a busy road be the cause of some sleepness nights, but it could also increase stroke risk, specifically for older individuals, a new study may show.

The study evaluates long-term exposure to busy streets and the noise accompanied by the passing cars and trucks to determine whether or not an increased risk of having a stroke is present.

Researchers at the Institute of Cancer Epidemiology analyzed more than 51,000 people for five years. The findings showed stroke risk to increase by about 4 percent for every 10 decibel noise interval.

After further evaluation of data, however, researchers noticed that the largest risks were present among the elderly — above the age of 65 years old.

In fact, the risks were so much higher for elders, more than 25 percent risk increase per 10 decibels, that there was actually no significant risk increase shown for individuals under the age of 65.

Highest risks were noticed when noise levels were higher than 60 decibels.

Additional factors researched noted were pollution or other sources of noise.

While this study is a great starting point, and the first of its kind, researchers firmly believe additional research needs to be conducted to draw a concrete link between traffic noise and stroke risks.

One guess about the correlation is that increased noise levels disturbs sleep which may increase blood pressure and stress.

The findings were published in the European Heart Journal.