What is ambient noise?
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What Does ambient noise Mean
It is called noise to the sound without annoying articulation. Environmental , meanwhile, is that which is linked to the environment (the context, the circumstances).
The notion of environmental noise , therefore, refers to unpleasant and even harmful sounds that modify the conditions considered normal or tolerable in a certain region. Excessive ambient noise causes what is known as noise pollution .
Environmental noise is a typical problem in large cities. It is generated by actions carried out by human beings , such as certain industrial or commercial activities, the transit of motor vehicles and the reproduction of music at a high volume. When these noises occur simultaneously and for extended periods, they can cause damage to people's health.
Take the case of an individual whose home is on an avenue . The ambient noise of the place can be formed by the engines and horns of cars and other means of transport, the machines that are used in the construction of a building, the music that comes out of a dance hall and the drums and shouts of protesters protesting on the spot. All these environmental noises constitute an acoustic pollution that can generate to the person who lives on the avenue from difficulties to rest to problems to study or concentrate at work, going through problems in the auditory system.
Although the noise is not so intense, if the auditory system is exposed to it for long periods, it is inevitable that there will be a negative effect , which in this case is called socioacusis . One of the most obvious symptoms of this problem is the presence of a "hiss" that can only be perceived by the affected person.
Hearing a hiss as a result of exposure to ambient noise is a sign that the ear is in trouble and, although this symptom may disappear in a few days, the disorder will get worse unless the noise is eliminated, even reaching the deafness .
To minimize environmental noise, it is possible to use construction materials that absorb or isolate noise or act on sources that cause pollution (encouraging the use of bicycles instead of cars, for example).
People who are born in a big city, where environmental noise is common, tend to get so used to living with this problem that they only realize its seriousness when they spend some time in the countryside or in a quieter place. Although it is difficult to believe, there are those who even having savored the peace cannot help but yearn to return to the city , since they are too used to its characteristics.
For the measurement of environmental noise and its impact, various indicators are used that are based on the sound pressure level . It, known by the abbreviations NPS or Lp , serves to identify the intensity of sound produced by a certain pressure, that is, the sound that an individual can perceive at a given moment. The unit used for measurement is the decibel (dB) and its two ends are the threshold of hearing (0 db) and of pain (120 dB).
On the other hand, we also speak of the equivalent continuous sound pressure level (NPSeq) to define the constant sound pressure level (as mentioned in the previous paragraph, this is expressed in decibels) that has the same total energy (this is also used called dose ) than the noise that has been measured. Other indicators are the sound exposure level , day-night equivalent level , and the maximum and minimum peaks .