How Sleeping With Noise Impacts Your Health

Even while you’re sleeping, your brain continues to register sounds around you. Obviously waking up several times throughout the night, or not being able to fall asleep will leave you feeling unrested in the morning. However, even if you don’t wake up, these sounds can impact your heart rate and blood pressure which in turn can leave you feeling restless when you wake up.
In stages one and two (lighter sleep stages), noise is more likely to interrupt your sleep cycle than if you are in stages three and four (deeper sleep stages). Even if you don’t wake, you may shift into a lighter sleep stage (i.e. from stage three to stage two), which ultimately will negatively affect your sleep cycle.

You may have also noticed that some sounds wake you while others do not (even if they are the same decibel). Scientists have proven that an emotionally charged sound, such as a crying baby, is more likely to wake you.

This is also why many doctors have noted that even if you like to sleep with sound, sleeping with the TV on is poor sleep hygiene because many of these sounds are much more emotionally charged. Even if you don’t wake up, you’ll be much more restless and may even physically move and twitch, which will leave you feeling tired in the morning.

White Noise and Sleep

However, sleep and sound aren’t always a bad mixture. White noise is a great way to reduce the impact of peak sounds (such as a siren or thunder) and help you sleep more peacefully at night. Studies have proven this by testing peak sounds on two groups; one sleeping with white noise and one sleeping without. The group sleeping with white noise was aroused considerably less by the peak noises. 
So what are white noise sleep sounds? 

White noise is a soft sound that remains constant (doesn’t have any peaks) such as a fan or an air purifier.  White noise is also particularly useful for people who suffer from tinnitus.

How to Minimize Noise

If you sleep in a noisy environment or in an urban area, you might not be able to cancel out all noise while you sleep. Instead, consider starting with a white noise machine, fan, or air purifier. If those don’t work, you may want to invest in earplugs. Covering floors with rugs to reduce echo and using thick curtains and drapes can also help.


If you’re accustomed to sleeping with sound and find yourself waking up tired, try changing your environment. Try out some of these suggestions and you might find yourself waking up with renewed energy and strength.