Photo credit: Ketut Subiyanto

by Daniel Fink, MD, Chair, The Quiet Coalition

Get your noise out of my ears! That’s the title of a recent Freakonomics Radio podcast which was updated and re-released as pandemic lockdown noise levels have returned to pre-pandemic levels.

I read economist Stephen Dubner’s book when it was published in 2005 and found it brilliant. Dubner’s insights continue on this podcast, which features a wide variety of experts, including The Quiet Coalition’s Arline Bronzaft, PhD.

What was most fascinating to me, though, was what a marine biologist had to say about underwater noise causing stress for whales. Whales are mammals, and if noise causes stress for them, it probably stresses humans, too. In fact, we have known for a long time that noise is stressful for humans.

I also learned about a 2012 book by Mike Goldsmith, “Discord: A History of Noise.” I became a noise activist in 2014, so somehow I missed this book. I’m going to buy a copy.

And it’s always good to hear what Dr. Bronzaft has to say. She has much wisdom to share with us.

Listen to the podcast. It’s well worth your time.

Thanks to our friends Yishane Lee at Hearing Health Foundation and Gabriel Corfas, PhD, at the University of Michigan’s Kresge Hearing Research Institute for bring this podcast to my attention.