Longitudinal effects of aircraft noise exposure on children's health and cognition: A six-year follow-up of the UK RANCH cohort

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Abstract

Cross-sectional evidence that environmental noise exposure at school shows negative associations with children's cognition and health has increased, yet longitudinal evidence is lacking. This study examined longitudinal associations of aircraft noise exposure at primary school on children's reading comprehension, noise annoyance, and psychological health at secondary school. This six-year follow-up of 461 children aged 15-16 years, who attended primary and secondary schools around London Heathrow airport, used annual average aircraft noise exposure at the schools from noise contour maps. Multilevel regression modelling showed that aircraft noise exposure at primary school was associated with a significant increase in noise annoyance and with a non-significant decrease in reading comprehension at follow-up. Aircraft noise at primary school was not associated with psychological health at follow-up. This is the first longitudinal study of its type, suggesting that aircraft noise exposure at school might impair reading comprehension, as well as increase noise annoyance in children. © 2013 Elsevier Ltd.

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Clark, C., Head, J., & Stansfeld, S. A. (2013). Longitudinal effects of aircraft noise exposure on children’s health and cognition: A six-year follow-up of the UK RANCH cohort. Journal of Environmental Psychology, 35, 1–9. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.jenvp.2013.03.002

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