Original Article

Assessment of Noise Annoyance and its Effects on Healthcare Staff Based on Sound Pressure Level and Annoyance Scale


Noise is a common and widespread problem in workplaces. Noise can lead to hearing loss, hypertension, nervous and mental disorders, annoyance and stress, sleep disturbance, negative impact on productivity and working capacity. The undesirable effects of noise on an individual or group are called annoyance. Some personal and social characteristics can affect on annoyance. This study was aimed to assess the level of noise pollution in some hospitals in Qom, central Province of Iran and study its effects on nurses’ psychological and physiological responses. The sound levels were measured using a sound level meter and the noise annoyance was assessed through a valid and reliable questionnaire. The noise annoyance index was finally defined based on variables measured by the questionnaire and its correlation with equivalent sound level at different frequencies. Besides, the major noise sources in different wards of the hospitals, the relationship between noise annoyance and demographic and personal characteristics and the effects of noise on sleep disturbance were analyzed. Based on results the average noise level in some hospitals was higher than the national standard in Iran (45 dB (A)). Moreover, in some wards, nurses have experienced different ranges of noise annoyance with obvious signs of it. The finding also indicated that there was a significant relationship between sleep disturbance and noise annoyance (p<0.001). Nurses believed that the noise of patients’ families was the most annoying sound source. According to the annoyance index, noise pollution in hospitals can cause psychological effects on staff and be associated with annoyance.

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IssueVol 6 No 1 (2014) QRcode
SectionOriginal Article(s)
Equivalent sound pressure level Annoyance Sleep disturbance Hospitals

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How to Cite
NASSIRI P, HEIDARI HR, KHADEM M, RAHIMIFARD H, ROSTAMI E. Assessment of Noise Annoyance and its Effects on Healthcare Staff Based on Sound Pressure Level and Annoyance Scale. Int J Occup Hyg. 2015;6(1):23-30.