People who live in noisy urban areas are more likely to have a stroke than those close to green space, according to research.
A study of more than 2,700 people in Spain found the risk of stroke rose by almost a third among people in areas with the most traffic noise.
The research couldn’t explain whether the danger came from the noise itself or whether the noise was simply a sign of living in a more polluted, less healthy area.
But the scientists suggested people living in noisy areas may be more likely to be stressed out or have high blood pressure, or be less likely to exercise.
A team from Barcelona’s Hospital del Mar Medical Research Institute, Brown University in the US and other universities in Barcelona carried out the study.
They used medical records and address details of 2,761 stroke patients from between 2005 and 2014 in the city.
Living surrounded by a high average level of noise pollution raised the risk of severe stroke by 30 per cent.
A severe stroke was defined loosely as one which caused more than two noticeable symptoms, such as difficulty moving or speaking normally, reduced consciousness or memory issues.