Kansas City Chiefs fans hold the record for the loudest racket ever made in an outdoor stadium — an ear-splitting 142.2 decibels, which was recorded at Arrowhead Stadium during a Monday Night Football game in 2014.
Although the Chiefs won 41-14 over the Patriots, that stroke of good luck could have caused a disaster for vulnerable fans.
That’s because noise can kill, according to researchers who found that people who live in noisy environments are more likely to suffer an ischemic stroke. They’re prone to have more severe strokes as well, though the researchers aren’t yet sure why that’s the case.
Ischemic strokes result from a blockage in an artery that supplies blood to the brain; they account for 70% to 80% of all strokes.
Unfortunately, noise is hard to escape. One study in the journal Environmental Health Perspectives estimated that 104 million Americans are continuously exposed to damaging levels of noise pollution.
So if you live near air, rail, or road traffic, you are likely to regularly experience 70 to 80 decibels of noise, even though the World Health Organization recommends that your exposure to traffic (or any) noise stay below 53 decibels during the day and 45 decibels at night.
Here's what you can do to reduce the sound assault:
• Hang soundproof curtains, especially on bedroom windows. And install soundproof windows.
• Cover floors with rugs and/or carpeting.
• Use earplugs or noise-canceling headphones in noisy workplaces or while sleeping.