CHAMPAIGN, Ill. (WCIA) — Health experts said noise barriers going up next to I-74 and I-57 are built to block loud noises, but it’s not just to protect construction workers.

Exposure to loud noises can have an impact on hearing and health as well. Health experts said high blood pressure, strokes and heart attacks are just some of the effects loud noises and high-pitched sounds can cause. Our bodies perceive those noises as a threat and that can lead to increases in adrenaline.

OSF Cardiologist Michael Broman said the best way to improve one’s health is to avoid loud sounds as much as possible. 

“It’s hard to make somebody move to avoid loud noises,” Broman said. “I would say if you’re in the market for buying a new house, maybe don’t buy one that’s in an area with a lot of loud noise. Maybe spend some time in that neighborhood and if there’s a lot of loud noise, just like right here, you might want to avoid living in that area, especially if you have high blood pressure.”

Broman said exposure to more than 80 decibels of loud noise can cause hearing issues. He said ear protection like headphones or plugs can help.