Sharon Koehler

Stone Industry Consultant

In part one of this two-part series, we discussed how excessive and loud noise is damaging for your body, and what you can do to help protect your hearing. In part two, I will present other types of noise that aren’t bad for you. Some noise is actually good for you and can help you relax, de-stress, or even feel better during illness or injury.

We have all heard of White Noise. It’s the fan we run in our bedrooms at night to block other noises, the static sound we hear when we turn a TV or radio to an unused channel, or the noise of a running vacuum cleaner. White noise can also be heard in music that is heavy in percussion instruments. There are also white noise machines that produce this sound. White noise has been shown to help you concentrate, fall asleep faster, lower anxiety, and can even help with depression symptoms.

Many doctors and scientists have dubbed “pink noise” as the most beneficial when it comes to healing.White noise is the most commonly known type of noise, but there are other beneficial noises that can help us too:

Pink Noise – Pink noise is fast overtaking white noise as the go-to for sleep and mood help. Pink noise is less intense and has a more nature-based sound. Ocean waves, rustling leaves, falling rain, and wind in the trees are all pink noise sounds. Pink noise has been shown to be a better choice when it comes to inducing sleep. It helps you fall asleep faster and stay asleep. It can also help improve your memory and focus. Many doctors and scientists have dubbed pink noise as the most beneficial when it comes to healing. There are apps you can turn to for pink noise. Pink noise machines are also available, but are still a little more difficult to find than white noise machines. If you have Alexa and you ask for Sleep Sounds, you can get Rainfall, Babbling Brook, or Ocean Waves. (I have done that.)

Brown Noise aka Red Noise – Brown noise triggers relaxation because its low frequencies are very similar to our brain’s resting state. Many people find brown noise soothing and it has been found that babies respond to it because it sounds like a mother’s womb. Brown noise, like pink noise, is based in nature, but with more powerful sounds. Crashing waves, rolling thunder, strong wind and heavy rain are all considered brown noise. Brown noise helps promote better sleep, relaxation, memory, and focus. In some cases, brown noise has been shown to help with ADHD symptoms. It can also help to relieve anxiety. You can find brown noise apps at your app store, or bundled with a collection of sounds ranging from white to pink noise.

Green Noise – Green noise, like pink and brown noise, are sounds rooted in nature, but less intense. Rolling waves on a beach, trickling streams, and soft, gentle breezes are all green noises. They help to calm and relax people. Like a lot of other noises, green noise can help with sleep due to your calmer, more relaxed state of mind and body. If you have ever been to a spa, you have probably heard green noise. Green noise has also been shown to lower anxiety levels and blood pressure. Again, the best place to find green noise is in your app or play store. 

Black Noise – Black noise, as it turns out, is the absence of noise. Simon and Garfunkel said it best: “The sound of silence.” A sensory deprivation tank can provide black noise, so can noise canceling headphones or earbuds. A lot of people find black noise relaxing. My youngest grandson sleeps like this. There is no app for black noise, you have to create that environment yourself. 

Loved one’s voices and nature sounds are considered the most soothing soundsThere are other types of noise that don’t necessarily help with sleep or relaxation. Orange, Blue, and Violet Noise are not considered particularly soothing or relaxing. They can best be described as clashing sounds. However, blue and violet noise can help with tinnitus (ringing in the ears) and hyperacusis (sound sensitivity). Orange noise has been shown to help with depression. 

However, Gray Noise is soothing, and it also helps with tinnitus, hyperacusis and is used frequently in hearing studies.

A few interesting facts about noise: Loved one’s voices and nature sounds are considered the most soothing sounds.

The most soothing song in the world is an 8-minute song called ‘Weightless” by Marconi Union. You can find it on YouTube,; search for “Weightless.”

On a personal note, I used to sleep with pink noise, but after taking a trip with my youngest grandson, I now opt for black noise. I find I fall asleep faster and have a better-quality sleep. Plus, no decibels to worry about hearing damage!

As with all noise, bad or good, you should not listen above 70 decibels.

Bear in mind that not every noise is for every person. If thunderstorms cause you anxiety, brown noise may not be for you. If you find static scratchy or irritating, you may not like white noise. If silence makes you tense and awkward, then you probably should stay away from black noise. There are apps and noise machines to help you out as well. You may have to do some experimenting to find the right noise that helps you relax before, during, or after a hard day’s work. 

Please send your thoughts and comments on this article to Sharon Koehler at .