Noise Pollution Solution: Pink Noise

We were recently asked to help an elderly gentleman with a noise pollution problem, in his case a noisy neighbour with a loud barking dog.

The first recommendation with noise pollution is of course to attempt to get the noise stopped, either through politely asking (which let’s face it doesn’t always work, and sometimes even backfires) or by reporting the noise problem to your local council.

However, if that doesn’t work, or while you’re waiting for the council to sort out the problem, you can use pink noise (a variation of white noise). Pink noise is often used to help being with highly sensitive hearing (hyperacusis). You can play the pink noise in the background on a music system, however it’s recommended to try listening to the pink noise using headphones, as it’s portable and doesn’t become a form of noise pollution itself.

Method to Fix Noise Pollution

  • Buy a standard reasonable-priced MP3 player
  • Create some pink noise using Audacity (a music application available on most laptops and desktops). We created 10 hours worth, so it lasts through sleep if required. We could have looped a shorter piece of sound, however some MP3 players leave a gap between the repeating of the music track
  • Save the pink noise as an MP3 file (ensure you give the MP3 a track title via the MP3 tags)
  • Copy the file to the MP3 player
  • Buy some decent headphones (it’s probably not worth buying active noise cancellation headphones, because they only tend to cut out continuous predictable sounds like the sound of a fan, rather than unpredictable variable sudden sounds like a barking dog)
  • Play the pink noise through the headphones when you need relief
MP3 Player

Soundproofing is another possibility, but it tends to be expensive compared to this more cost-effective solution. If you can afford it, then it’s worth doing.

Contact us if you want us to help you with a noise pollution problem, this might include helping reduce sound for someone who is autistic, or you might have hyperacusis, or just a noisy neighbour. Whatever your problem, we look forward to finding a solution for you.

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