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Sunday, May 24, 2020

Everything you need to know about a white noise machine

There are, primarily, two types of machines: one that emits white noise, and one that emits natural sounds.

By: Lifestyle Desk | New Delhi | Updated: September 6, 2019 3:38:58 pm
white noise, sleeping habit, indian express, indian express news There could be reasons aplenty for your sleeplessness, but should you wish to really invest in a good night’s sleep, then a white noise machine could come handy. (Photo: Pixabay)

It is difficult for any human being to function and perform daily chores without adequate hours of sleep. And unless you live on the Elm Street, sleeping should not be a problem and come naturally to you. But how one sleeps is something that varies from person to person; it is a matter of preference.

Among other things, the lack of a good night’s sleep can cause frequent illnesses, heart ailments, risk of breast and prostrate cancer, a weakened libido, weight gain and depression.

For some light sleepers, even a little noise, like the dropping of a pin or the rustling of sheets can prove to be disruptive. The lucky ones, however, can sleep through literally anything.

ALSO READ | Following these simple things will ensure a good night’s sleep

But if you find yourself somewhere in between, then this article is for you. There could be reasons aplenty for your sleeplessness, but should you wish to really invest in a good night’s sleep, then a white noise machine could come handy.

What is it?

As the name suggests, it is a machine that makes soothing sounds, like a low humming and/or of a waterfall and helps calm our nerves. Once we are focused, the induction happens naturally, and before we know it, we are already asleep!

The machine helps block the noises that would otherwise distract us, engulfing us in a sound cocoon.

babies, sleeping habits, white noise machine, Indian Express, Indian Express news By masking noises like that of traffic, honking, screaming, television, a white noise machine could soothe your baby and get them to fall into an uninterrupted sleep in no time. (Source: Express Archives)

For babies

If you are a new parent, or know anyone who is, you’ll know that getting a baby to sleep could be daunting task. And without sleep, they are likely to get cranky and fussy. By masking noises like that of traffic, honking, screaming, television, a white noise machine could soothe your baby and get them to fall into an uninterrupted sleep in no time.

According to a 1990 study published in the Archives of Disease in Childhood, 80 per cent of 40 newborns studied were found to fall asleep within five minutes of listening to the white noise.

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The disadvantages

Studies have found that despite the ingenuity of the invention, white noise could potentially harm babies. Sometimes, machines can exceed the recommended noise limits for babies. Besides cause hearing problems, they could also impede speech and language development in babies. Also, babies might become heavily reliant on the machines, leading to further complications.

It also happens that some babies don’t like the white noise. It could, therefore, be a trial and error process before you realise what actually works for you.

Know your machine 

Should you decide to go for it, makes sure it caters to your requirements. There are, primarily, two types of machines: one that emits white noise and one that emits natural sounds. The former usually creates a fan sound or a low hum. The latter comes with engineered acoustic sounds like that of a waterfall, rain, a stream, wind, etc.

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