Sound, a normal feature of our life, is the means of communication and entertainment in most animals, including human beings. It is also a very effective alarm system. A low sound is pleasant whereas a loud sound is unpleasant and is commonly referred to as ‘noise’. Noise can be defined as an unpleasant and unwanted sound.
Whether a given sound is as pleasant as music or as unpleasant as noise depends on its loudness, duration, rhythm and the mood of the person. But loudness is definitely the most significant criterion which converts sound into noise. Exposure to loud noise is indeed annoying and harmful too.
Noise is a physical form of pollution and is not directly harmful to the life supporting systems namely air, soil and water. Its effects are more directly on the receiver i.e. man. Noise pollution is the result of modern industrialized urban life and congestion due to over population.
Even though noise pollution is not fatal to human life, yet its importance cannot be overlooked because repeated exposure to noise reduces the sleeping hours and productivity or efficiency of a human being. It affects the peace of mind and invades the privacy of a human being. The importance of noise pollution as environmental problem is being recognized as the ill effects of noise on human health and environment are becoming evident with each passing day.