There is a confirmed link between PTSD and noise sensitivity and hyperacusis.
And I don’t mean the loud sounds, startle reflex types of sound.
I mean the real PTSD stressors, like tapping, high pitched sounds, competing sounds, the vacuum cleaner, the lawn mower, kids bouncing balls……..
On bad days – I can literally feel like I want to scream!!!!
It is literally pain in my head.
I also notice an increase in noise sensitivity later on in the day, when my brain is already overwhelmed, and an increase when I am stressed and my PTSD symptoms all increase.
It’s a not a commonly known one, but I have deep insight into my PTSD symptoms and why – so I researched it.
What Is Hyperacusis?
Hyperacusis is a condition that arises from a problem in the way the brain’s central auditory processing center perceives noise. It can often lead to pain and discomfort.
Individuals with hyperacusis have difficulty tolerating sounds which do not seem loud to others, such as the noise from running faucet water, riding in a car, walking on leaves, dishwasher, fan on the refrigerator, shuffling papers. Although all sounds may be perceived as too loud, high frequency sounds may be particularly troublesome.
As one might suspect, the quality of life for individuals with hyperacusis can be greatly compromised. For those with a severe intolerance to sound, it is difficult and sometimes impossible to function in an every day environment with all its ambient noise. Hyperacusis can contribute to social isolation, phonophobia (fear of normal sounds), and depression.
Prevalence And Causes Of Hyperacusis
Many people experience sensitivity to sound, but true hyperacusis is rare, affecting approximately one in 50,000 individuals. The disorder can affect people of all ages in one or both ears. Individuals are usually not born with hyperacusis, but may develop a narrow tolerance to soundOther common causes include:
• Head injury
• Ear damage from toxins or medication
• Lyme disease
• Air bag deployment
• Viral infections involving the inner ear or facial nerve (Bell’s palsy)
• Temporomandibular joint (TMJ) syndrome
There are a variety of neurologic conditions that may be associated with hyperacusis, including:
• Post-traumatic stress disorder
• Chronic fatigue syndrome
• Tay-Sach’s disease
• Some forms of epilepsy
• Valium dependence
• Migraine headaches
I am aware so many people have issues with noise intolerance, and can it can be due to hyperacusis, hypervigilance, triggers.
The PTSD brain, processes stimuli, differently to brains.
~ Lilly Hope Lucario
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