Noise pollution linked to higher dementia risk

Noise pollution linked to higher dementia risk

Noise pollution linked to higher dementia risk, a new study shows. Several researchers have linked noise pollution to several health conditions.

A Danish study revealed a possible association between transportation noise and an increased risk of various forms of dementia, especially Alzheimer’s disease.

According to the World Health Organization (WHO), dementia affects more than 55 million people worldwide. Experts expect this number to exceed 150 million by 2050.

It is necessary to identify potentially modifiable risk factors for dementia.  

The latest study published in the journal The BMJ shows that exposure to traffic noise is associated with a higher risk of developing all-cause dementia, especially Alzheimer’s disease.

Various studies have consistently linked noise pollution to various health conditions such as obesity, diabetes, and coronary heart disease.

Transportation noise is classified as the second-worst environmental risk factor for public health in Europe.

The latest study involved nearly 2 million adults, aged 60 years or older, who lived in Denmark between 2004 and 2017. The researchers analyzed exposure to traffic noise.

They found that noise from road traffic and railways was associated with a higher risk of all forms of dementia, notably Alzheimer’s disease.

“The widespread and substantial exposures to noise worldwide, the severity of associated health consequences, and the limited tools available for people to protect themselves strongly support the WHO’s argument that ‘noise pollution is not only an environmental nuisance but also a threat to public health,” Dr. Heather Snyder, Ph.D. — the Alzheimer’s Association vice president of medical and scientific relations said.