Hypersensitivity to Sound

I have an intense hypersensitivity to sound that impairs my daily functions and relationships. I’ve read blogs about others with bipolar disorder that have a hypersensitivity problem, but I haven’t found a solution or medicine. I currently take Seroquel and Wellbutrin, but the sounds just wont go away! Do you have any ideas for solutions?

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I can completely relate to this annoying symptom of hypersensitivity to noises.  I am not sure why it happens to some of us, but it does.  I can give you some ideas on how I have dealt with this situation.  My psychiatrist tells me it happens in some patients but there’s no medication or cure for the problem.  She told me to search out solutions and I have done that.  My therapist helped me some, too.

When this started happening to me I was having other psychosis problems as well.  As the psychosis waned and wasn’t there anymore, I still had the struggle of noises that sounded way out of decibel range.  I hear them as really, really loud.  I would ask my husband if he heard that and he was confused so I knew it was me.

Personally, I wear an earplug in one ear.  It tends to keep the loud noises at bay and I am only hearing them with one ear.  I don’t know about your hair length but I put my hair over the ear with the plug in it.  I know people have seen it but I don’t care what they think because my sanity is at stake.  I also use my iPod a lot.  I have relaxation CDs on there and it helps to relax me so I am not so hyper vigilant with the noises around.  I also purposefully put myself in a room with no noise in it.  Oftentimes, it’s my bedroom.  I go in there and lock the door and meditate.  It helps to keep my mind off of the noises I may be hearing.

I don’t know your situation but I have three boys.  They are constantly going and moving and making noise.  I don’t think it’s right that I make them be quiet all the time as they are children and they make noise when they’re happy, sad, mad, or silly.  This would be a situation where I’d remove myself at times to a quiet room in order to cope.  Some games that make noises are enhanced also so I choose not to play those.

I wish I had a better solution but this is what I have done to help myself with it.  It’s a situation where we have to be creative with coping skills and figure out what works best for us.  And sometimes, that sucks!

5 thoughts on “Hypersensitivity to Sound

  1. When the kids get rowdy or people are just plain too loud for my delicate years I get very short and aggitated. I thought it was just me being ornery but apparently not. My ex used to say that I couldn’t handle anything and in those situations probably seemed like it. The ear plug is a great idea, but I am wondering if plugging just one ear would intensive the noise. I may try wearing two and just not push them all the way in the ears. Place them in my ears just enough to soften the noise.

  2. Megan Steffora Aldin

    WOW!! I had no idea that thw two were related!!! The last time I had my hearing checked I was seriuously told that I hear at the frequency of a dog, and noises can make me crazy. This is fascinating, and thank you for the advice!!!

  3. I, too, am very sensitive to sound, but didn’t relate it to bipolar until I read your post.I’m also hypersensitive to light; flouresent(sp)the worst. My therapist automatically turns off the lights in his office as I enter. I wear sun glasses everywhere except at home, even on cloudy or rainy days. I am fortunate to have a basement apartment that is cool, dark and quiet, which allows me the solitude I need. Insomnia is not a problem here;& my husband has finally accepted the seperate sleeping arrangement. Showering is difficult at times, too. Every drop of water hurts. I’ve blamed this on Fibromyalgia; however I am manic when this happens, so score one more difficulty on bipolar. Freedom from loud sound is impossible in this hetic, busy world. I hope you can find a quiet, peaceful place to just “be” Sincerely, Linda

  4. I, too, am very sensitive to sound, but didn’t relate it to bipolar until I read your post.I’m also hypersensitive to light; flouresent(sp)the worst. My therapist automatically turns off the lights in his office as I enter. I wear sun glasses everywhere except at home, even on cloudy or rainy days. I am fortunate to have a basement apartment that is cool, dark and quiet, which allows me the solitude I need. Insomnia is not a problem here;& my husband has finally accepted the seperate sleeping arrangement. Showering is difficult at times, too. Every drop of water hurts. I’ve blamed this on Fibromyalgia; however I am manic when this happens, so score one more difficulty on bipolar. Freedom from loud sound is impossible in this hetic, busy world. I hope you can find a quiet, peaceful place to just “be” Sincerely, Linda

  5. i have the problem with noises too, but since i’m in school, i can’t really block it out. when im outside of school, im fine because i just listen to my ipod or wear earplugs, but its the 8 hours of school that is torture! i wish i knew what to do.

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