You wouldn’t be able to tolerate the quietest place on Earth for more than 45 minutes.

Silence may be golden, but too much of it will drive you mad. In Minnesota’s Orfield Laboratories, there’s an anechoic chamber that is so quiet, the background noise is measured in negative decibels (-9.4 dBA, to be exact). The room’s founder, Steven Orfield, told Hearing Aid Know that not only can you “hear your heart beating and sometimes hear your lungs,” but those who have entered the space have trouble standing up due to the fact that humans use sounds to orient themselves. That means anyone who spends a little time in the room needs to be seated. But they won’t be there for long. According to Orfield, the longest anybody has been able to tolerate the extreme silence is 45 minutes.

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