Background: Noise is an important aspect of the ward atmosphere climate - the combination of the architectural solutions, organizational features, the psychological traits of the operators and their interactions, and the patients' characteristics. Despite its importance noise levels have been less analyzed than other aspects of the ward atmosphere climate. Aim: In this study the aim is to identify the sources of noise and the sound pressure level in an acute psychiatric ward, and secondly to ascertain whether this is perceived by inpatients as disturbing. Method: The sound pressure levels were measured during three nonconsecutive mornings, three afternoons, and three nights. A questionnaire was administered to ascertain patients' opinions about the noise in the ward. Results: The average noise level in the ward was 62.5 dB(A)eq in the morning, 55.8 in the afternoon, and 51.5 at night. A total of 23 patients took part in the study: 65.2% of this sample did not perceive the noise in the ward as disturbing. Conclusion: In a psychiatric ward, the main source of noise is the verbal communication, and acoustic pressure also derived from care activities based around relationships. Other sources of noise perceived as disturbing came from the opening and closing of doors and the entry doorbell. Adopting relational and architectural-structural measures could reduce the sound pressure, with a view to further improving the ambience in the ward.

Noise Levels in an Acute Psychiatric Unit: An Exploratory Observational Study

CUTRONE, FRANCESCO;Cabbia, C.;Cocchio, S.;Baldo, V.
2019

Abstract

Background: Noise is an important aspect of the ward atmosphere climate - the combination of the architectural solutions, organizational features, the psychological traits of the operators and their interactions, and the patients' characteristics. Despite its importance noise levels have been less analyzed than other aspects of the ward atmosphere climate. Aim: In this study the aim is to identify the sources of noise and the sound pressure level in an acute psychiatric ward, and secondly to ascertain whether this is perceived by inpatients as disturbing. Method: The sound pressure levels were measured during three nonconsecutive mornings, three afternoons, and three nights. A questionnaire was administered to ascertain patients' opinions about the noise in the ward. Results: The average noise level in the ward was 62.5 dB(A)eq in the morning, 55.8 in the afternoon, and 51.5 at night. A total of 23 patients took part in the study: 65.2% of this sample did not perceive the noise in the ward as disturbing. Conclusion: In a psychiatric ward, the main source of noise is the verbal communication, and acoustic pressure also derived from care activities based around relationships. Other sources of noise perceived as disturbing came from the opening and closing of doors and the entry doorbell. Adopting relational and architectural-structural measures could reduce the sound pressure, with a view to further improving the ambience in the ward.
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Utilizza questo identificativo per citare o creare un link a questo documento: http://hdl.handle.net/11577/3298592
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