If you ever need a reason to work in a peaceful library or bookstore, this is it: The incidence of heart attacks rises by 30 percent in people who work in loud places, and can increase to 300 percent in women if the home is very noisy too. (So a construction worker who goes home to a wailing baby? Bad scene). The noise level has to exceed 85 decibels to qualify as “loud” noise—i.e, so loud you have to yell over it—so that Chatty Cathy at work doesn’t count. But if you DO work amidst 85 decibels or more, make sure you have ear protection in the form of molded earplugs. They can at least reduce the noise by 30 decibels or more.
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