Noise Sensitivity: When The World Is Too Loud
Noise sensitivity can be likened to nails on a blackboard. The constant buzz and whir of music, technology, the buzzing of Facebook notifications, ringing phones and loud conversations can be overwhelming. This sensitivity to noise is known as hyperacusis, a condition that arises from a problem in the way the brain processes noise.
When a sufferer comes to dread social settings due to the noise, it can become a mental health trigger. Sufferers may feel trapped with no escape, want some place quiet or feel disoriented, as though he or she can hear every noise or conversation in a room. The effect is similar to being in an echo chamber.
Causes of Noise Sensitivity
Hearing loss does not necessarily reduce sensory overload. The way in which the brain processes the sound does not mean that a person with hyperacusis, or sensitivity to sound in general, has better hearing. It's just that he or she is more sensitive to certain sounds: paper rustling, conversations, heating and air system sounds, etc.
Some causes of sensory overload include:
- brain injury
- airbag deployment
- ear damage
- Neurological conditions such as migraines, chronic fatigue syndrome and posttraumatic stress disorder can also be associated with increased sensitivity to noise.
Tips to Reduce Noise Sensitivity
- Incorporate some white noise into your surroundings - run a fan, invest in a white noise machine, open a window or install a white noise app on your cell phone.
- Wear noise-cancelling headphones or earbuds.
- Try positioning yourself in another area of the room.
- If you are wearing a hoodie, putting the hood up can lessen the stimulation.
- Using a tactile tool, such as rubbing a smooth stone can provide enough of a distraction to facilitate calming (Using Objects to Reduce Anxiety).
- Use post-it notes to cover sensors on auto-flushing toilets or automatic hand driers.
- Visiting during non-peak times and seeking seating on the perimeter can help to reduce exposure to noise.
What do you do when the world becomes too loud? We'd love to hear what has worked for you.
Kipp, P. (2013, December 27). Noise Sensitivity: When The World Is Too Loud, HealthyPlace. Retrieved on 2022, December 6 from https://www.healthyplace.com/blogs/recoveringfrommentalillness/2013/12/when-the-world-is-too-loud-noise-sensitivity
Author: Paulissa Kipp
I'm 12, and have been dealing with this for at least a few years. I hate the sound of muffled music, whistling, humming, singing, tapping, and loud talking, so school and even at home is a nightmare. I get really angry or upset, and I've been having a lot of trouble coping. It also doesn't help that in junior high, people think it's perfectly fine to annoy the $#!* out of others (pardon my language). Luckily, I've been living alone with my mother and doge for a while, and it's been heaven on Earth to be away from my poor excuse of a father's loud-ass piano and sister's blaring music. It still is really difficult to have a lack of people around me who are dealing with the same problem. Everyone around me thinks it's getting out of hand, and they think it's not a problem or a big deal, but the truth is, I just need dead silence or white noise to even think straight. It probably started from PTSD or something, I've been having a really rough time in the past couple of years... I don't know. I'm glad my mom is there for me (at least somewhat) in this situation, but do I need therapy or will this eventually pass?
Well, I'm relieved it isn't just me. Maybe I'll meet someone with the same problem, who knows?
My biggest problem is dogs and opening and closing doors, I lost my rented garden flat because my neighbours dog didn't want to shut up, it angers me so much, and eventually I totally lost it, the day after the caretaker gave notice, people really don't understand what we go through, I eventually realized that dogs will bark at anytime and bought a decent set of earphones for my tv and a box of high noise damping earplugs for sleeping, I'm living 4 months now in my new place and didn't even realize my new neighbour had a dog, I just pity the other neighbour who has to endure.
I Feel Really Encouraged.I Thot I Am Going Through This Alone.Its Especially Difficult When You Have A Brother Like Myn Who Survives On Loud Music.
I live near a shipyard I can hear all the different fans day and night, I can hear next doors fridge and fish tank all these noises are ruining my life. I get no peace and no sleep. My husband hears all these noises but manages to blank them out, I can't. I feel so desperate. I want to go to sleep and not wake up.
Rilly need HELP
I am almost 70 years old, and noticed my hearing seemed to be freaky! I heard light bulbs warming up, and if they were about to go out, they would start to ring, often hours before the scream of their blow out. I was often annoyed that I was the only person who heard electric wires in the walls! It has saved me from a few fires until my husband refused to take my warning seriously. However, I noticed problems by the age of 7, when people talked, played, or just plain made pointless noises. Yes, I did, and still do attempt to shut it out. Ear plugs are helpful. Sirens put me in panic mode, even when I am the passenger! I have lost some of my hearing and am grateful that the walls are now quiet.
I am one of Jehovah's Witnesses, and twice a week, attend meetings at the Kingdom Hall. The dreaded chatter at the end of meetings is disorienting, but the lessons and happy faces make the panic worthwhile.
Walls are thin in house
And the water pipes go off
Like an airport and a horrible
Shaking loud grinding landing
With knocking sounds
My brain nerves are sensitive and irritated
To where my eyes squench tight
And it goes off randomly all through
Late to early mornings
And the owner says it nothing can be fixed
How do I escape this horrible nerve wrecking sound
So so bad I have no peaceful rest
No matter what day or time because it goes off and I'm a bit angry, depressed and nerves in my head don't feel well....
My issue is the fan on our bathroom. It's very low, but to me it sounds like a jet. Hurts my ears so bad , I can't concentrate if it's in and no one else in my family even realizes it's on. I can sometimes here the electricity in the walls too. But that was worse in my first home that had older wiring, not so bad or as often now. Thank goodness. Makes me feel crazy ! Glad I'm not alone.
Unnecessary loud noises are a trigger for me as well. I've been a medic for almost 30 years and the sirens blaring on the top of our trucks used to do it. Thank goodness, the are now on the front of the trucks which does help. But things like churches with loud music, air shows, or even loud movies agitate me. I have to keep ear plugs with me and apparently, the problem is hereditary! My 12 year-old daughter is already experiencing the same thing.
I just started to stardle and I jump easily when the dog barks or the tv goes on loud. Recently was prescribed Gabapentin for anxiety. Im not sure if this medication has anything to do with it. This sensitivity to noise adds stress and I get upset with others. It feels like they do not understand me.
I think I might have something like this...Whenever I hear something like a pan drop in my kitchen I get extremely scared and angry and I freeze up. Worse than that usually is at lunch in school when I suddenly feel overwhelmed by their voices around me and I get nervous and feel irritable, violent, and trapped...
A relatively new diagnosis for those people affected by sounds they feel are annoying is called "Misophonia". Please look this up! I saw a report on this a couple of years on 20/20 and was RELIEVED I was not the only one with sound sensitivity! Gum chewing, people eating loudly, and eating crushed ice have always driven me crazy. No one else in my family was bothered by noises and they thought I was just trying to be "controlling". My dad ate so loudly I had to sit at the complete opposite end of the table at meal times. I hate I have this problem, but am relieved to know there is a diagnosis!
When I'm watching tv and an ad break comes on that is excessively louder than the show, and certain squeaky children's toys, does ones head in.
I live near a highway, and at night I can't get any sleep. Add to that the squeaky noise the wood floor makes whenever one of the kids walks...my migraines are getting worse and my mood is deteriorating. Any ideas, please help.
There's only one restaurant near my workplace to eat lunch or grab a coffee, McDonalds. It's usually filled with a bunch of screaming little kids. I also find that McDonalds plays their music too loud. I have a hard time hearing my friend when I'm trying to talk to her on my cell phone. Unfortunately there's really no quiet place to go on my break. By the end of the day I crave peace and quiet
When I get home from work sometimes I turn on the TV on to relax a bit but I often turn the volume completely off. The noise bothers me. Has anyone ever noticed how TV commercials are always louder than the regular scheduled programs? It drives me batty!
Exercise is suppose to be good for dealing with stress. I stopped going to some exercise classes mostly because the music is too loud and stresses me out. It also gives me a head ache. I find the yoga classes are much more relaxing
I was shocked when my mother purposely had her little toy poodle's voice box surgically altered by the vet because it barked so much that she just couldn't stand it any longer. She has mennier's disease (constant ringing in her ears). It's so cruel. Her dog sounds like it's got a mild case of laryngitis. I'm surprised she even got the vet to do it for her. It would've been kinder to have given the dog away...
I know what it means. I really suffer when I hear low noises. Some people in my family watch TV with 'low tones' on sometimes like 6 hours per day at weekends. It makes me thinking of suicide sometimes, just to never ever have to hear it again. It's like I'm in work during the week and at weekend I can only clench my teeth and bear it. Going for a walk helps a little though.
I had a stroke in early Sept and since having it I can't deal with noise. Multiple conversations the noise of traffic on a busy road I can even feel the noise by pressing the screen on my phone to write this
Since I have gotten sober,dogs liking themselves lapping water, or a person eating food,as well as some certain voices,along with crying,...essentialy give me anxiety panic attack s,they produce anger as well....I currently take lithium prozac and remeron. I just have to flat out leave the vicinity of the noise...... Often times I will listen to dubstep as loud as I can. It helps but does not fix the issue.
I'm at my wits end with this noisy planet, I can't even have a cup of coffee at McDonalds in the morning without loud 'boom-boom' music ringing in my ears. What ever happened to light background music? (elevator music I think they used to call it?)
And don't even get me started when it comes to clothes shopping, Argh!
I'd rather slash my wrists than have my ear drums assulted, while try to buy a pair of feckin' jeans...!
Finally. There are other people just like me. Encouaged.
I first noticed what I call my noise overload about ten years ago. I would go have my hair cut and could not help but hearing everyone around me talking, hair dryers buzzing, someone having their hair washed, laughter, music, etc. My hairdresser would be talking to me and I would find it so difficult to listen to her because I could not block out the other noises. I found I would leave the salon feeling over stimulated and needing a quiet place. I can't begin to tell how many times I have asked to be seated in a restaurant away from people or to ask for music to be turned down. A new problem has started and that is when someone is talking on their cell phone in a public place and other things are going on. I feel like I'm coming unglued. I feel like saying, "go outside", no one wants to hear your conversation. I could go on and on but I won't, this is my reality.
I am 61 years old. My head and ears hurts when husband screams talking, we are both hard of hearing. I can't stand the screaming , makes me nervous. Will taking my xanax calm it down?
I live next to a daycare. The provider is probably deaf so she is immune to the shrill screams, constant crying and racket made from dragging plastic cars over rough pavement.
I become so angry, I get migraines; sometimes for days. I get other stress reactions including depression and anxiety that prevents me from living normally. I would have to sue her for being a private nuisance and there is no guarantee I would prevail. I cannot move without selling my house and disrupting my husbands life.
Noise abatement organizations do not even talk about child noise. Child noise is not politically correct. My health is deteriorating and I have no answers.
Restaurants are increasingly playing music at a loud level. I don't have much luck getting them to turn it down. Department stores seem to always want the TVs on loud. It's harder getting out of the house. Thank you for some ideas on coping.
Really HATING the air conditioning in my house lately. I can play loud music all day - as long as others aren't trying to talk/scream over it. I'd rather be hot, however, than to run the air conditioner. Definitely mixing too many noises bothers me.
I become very agitated and stressed out. After an event, I often experience intense migraines and utter exhaustion. It's not an everyday thing, but when I can't handle the noise level, this super outgoing girl, goes into hiding, least I take it out on others around me.
I get mild anxiety/panic attacks when people turn on loud music. It frustrates me and irritates the heck out of me. It's not as serious but I tend to get sweaty and nervous when I hear just loud music in general.
However, I don't know if it's just me...but I have yet to meet a person who has the same problem as me. There are times when I get so seriously anxious, nauseous, and feel like fainting and crying my bloody tears out. My stomach starts churning and tightening. My mind goes blank and I'm sweating and my heart starts speeding like crazy. My hands start to tremble and then my body starts feeling weird and uncomfortable. I get all these symptoms when I hear constant noise patterns (For example, when I sit in a room and all I can hear is the clock ticking, when I drive and I can hear my engine making constant noises, when I hear water constantly dripping into the sink, when my dad is in the garage using a power tool, when babies starts hiccuping, when my AC is turned on and is constantly making the same noise over and over and over. It drives me insane! I get so distracted and it's like, I start hearing every single noise within the area through a speaker of some sort.
It's hard for me to explain to people who don't understand what I go through and how I feel when certain noises make me go crazy...is this some sort of specific phobia that I have?
But either way, I tend to just keep myself calm by blocking the sounds out and taking deep breathes, it works most of the time.
I get really stressed and sometimes find it difficult to breathe when people around me use loud voices or turn music/radio up to loud and when I get stressed I get angry and my parents get annoyed with me but they don't know how I feel when I'm like that it's really difficult for me.
bipolar with tmj,, what about tinnitus >> no mention of and the RINGING NEVER ENDS
Thank you for your input. There are many reasons for sensory overload and noise sensitivity; too many to cover in one post. My intent was not to do an all-inclusive post covering diagnoses that I am not familiar with, as that would have been a disservice.
Hi I find that children shouting or babies screaming gets me angry allso loud talking and laughing in pubs makes me angry. my friends are allways saying it doesent bother them.
Think I must be going insane as when I mention it to people thay think I am mad.
So month or two ago I was talking to my psychiatrist about discovering Dr Elaine Arron's blog, The Highly Sensitive Person--There were so many things that struck a chord, I had to mention it to him. He said it sounded a lot like ADHD (which I was diagnosed with a few years ago), and when he did I recalled reading some very similar things in the books on ADHD I had researched after being diagnosed. After reading this post, I think I've sort of figured out a distinction of two similar and frequently-but-not-always-co-morbid issues with noise (which I've been trying to sort out for a while).
There are times when noises compete with noise, when my inattention is kicked up a notch, and during those times I need quiet, or at least something brown-noise-ish, like familiar classical music/nature tracks (without too many sudden movements), which my brain knows, so that my brain gets the support it needs to find a flow state. There are also times when I am in a noisy room with chattering around, and sometimes I am ok. Sometimes I jump from conversation to conversation, and sometimes I engage in a discussion and the competing noise fades more appropriately into the background. This is how the ADHD plays with noise processing, I think.
However, when my nervous system cranks up, which is frequently under circumstances that also worsen ADHD symptoms (both making it hard to differentiate as well as creating a feedback loop as my anxieties mount from trying to deal with the various ADHD fallout and then the irrational irritants muck with my focus and prevent flow), my sensory processing goes haywire. Loud is louder and normal is loud and quiet can be loud and all is painful and irritating, especially when the noise is sporadic and/or punctuated. My attitude turns to s**t and I have more and more trouble hiding how grossed out, anxious, and cranky I increasingly am. It's not just audio, but also olfactory and tactile. It's not just that all input is the same and it's hard to prioritize my focus; instead I am hyper aware and frequently have trouble with any sort of higher brain functions beyond my immediate need to alleviate/escape the pain. My anxiety hikes, and now that this has been a problem of increasing severity for some years, it is also general incredibly depressing. I am trapped, forced to confront how non-neurotypical I am and how hobbled I've become. This spirals down into all the different ways I now have cause to experience those feelings, over and over, and how it all just seems to be getting worse, not better.
With either of these, I can more frequently find myself dealing with the sensory input as the school year goes on (drama department), especially after a show run if I stay rested enough and eat my non-allergies, because pre-show can be pretty communal, yet I am forced to take care of business anyway. If I join in voluntarily and keep a balance between personal warmup and the group flow I do the best.
Other things that we do in my program probably help too--a lot of our warmups have meditative qualities to them, and exercise in general can help a bit if I have been taking care of myself.
And in order to keep my instrument at its best, I have to be healthy, because it is my connected body and mind that I need to do my work. For me that is a lot--I have a lot of allergies and digestive issues that make it difficult to keep inflammation down. I need appropriate sleep schedules to keep my body, nerves (both physiological system and mental states), appetite, and ADHD manageable-- and I need to take care of those last three to prevent the domino effect on my body that can happen. Unfortunately insomnia is a problem (another feedback looper, grr). And do also have sleep apnea, to boot. But mostly am just an idiot and/or too anxious by the time I start to get tired that I have trouble doing what I need to.
Tonight, for example, I was driven by weeks of poor sleep habits + interrupted sleep from the noises of my mother cleaning, which freak me the fuck out, especially when I can hear her cleaning my bathroom through the connecting wall--it's not only sporadic, punctuated, agressive noise, but she's also just invaded my territory and I know I will be faced with change and possibly the scents of detergent. She also might freak out at any moment from overwhelm and verbally attack me; the closer she is to where I am, the more on guard I am. And then it doesn't matter if she's clattering dishes in the sink across the house or dropping things around her bedroom or chewing food while watching tv (again, across the house). I am screwed and trapped, forced to avoidance, because risking getting in the way or bringing attention to myself is just asking to be told to do some sensorily-uncomfortable task and/or asking for a conflict if she's already hair-trigger anxious. Tonight our visiting relatives (the catalyst of the anxious thorough house cleaning) came for supper. While she put together supper I tried to sit with a guest and talk, but her clanging and clanking and pounding and clinking was just too much; I couldn't even produce complete coherent sentences. It probably didn't help that my ADHD med was in its wearing-off phase (which I find can be particularly sensitive) or that I hadn't eaten much today, either. Or that I'd had caffeine, which can worsen it, especially as it wears off, too. I rudely excused myself and abruptly ran to my room, shortly starting to search for my earplugs as the kitchen noises were still getting to me. The yelling for me to come to supper was terrible. I was in a panic until I found them. It wasn't even completely ready, so I ran out to the living room while people clinked and talked, searching for what to do when the world was too loud and finding this link. Supper was so-so, improved by earplugs, but still hard to focus on keeping up my end of the conversation. At least Most of the eating sounds were muffled by my talking and being forced to hear my own eating sounds in my head and my blood pounding along my eardrums. I only have to think about someone eating and I get the creepy crawlies, bringing tension into my back, shoulders, and jaw. My bro also has clicking TMJ, so there's that added irritant. It's yet another thing that makes me sad; I love my bro, but most of the time we run into each other it's in the kitchen, and/or when we hang out there are frequently snacks involved. So I see him less now. I see most people less now, even though I need to spend time with them to be happy.
It's all a balancing act that I've grown rather tired of trying to figure out, but in writing this I've noticed that while it has grown less ignorable over the years (and yes, was also worse after my car accident a few months ago) and possibly more painful, this year I've made some progress, I think. I'm still looking for answers, but between some basic self-care and my latest medication regimen (or near-regimen) I find pockets where I can deal, and sometimes not even be too affected. It's a start, I guess.
Although I don't believe I have Noise Sensitivity, I am, and always have been, ridiculously hyper-aware of background noises. It is as if the foresound-what I'm calling the sound I should be focused upon-and the backsounds are fighting for dominance. I will watch a film with headphones, for instance, and hear just as loudly as the scene upon the screen, the television from the other room. If I turn my volume up, which I don't prefer to do, the television in the other room gets just as loud. Funnily enough, when I go to confront them of their loud television, I am surprised to find they are watching at a relatively low volume. My mind only perceives the noise as loud if I leave the room. As one might imagine, it gets aggravating for both parties involved. I despise loud noises in general-loudness of all sorts really-but only background noise messes about like some sort of pesky younger sibling. Provoking you and then pretending it was completely innocent. I don't believe that is Noise Sensitivity, but it seems to be the closest relating term and this article does have good advice I might take. Because nothing's worked thus far. The background noise gets louder the more I try to block it out.
Some of you sound like you have misophonia which is what I have
Finding this article couldn't have come to my attention with more perfect timing. Just last night I went out to dinner with my roommates and had to get up and walk outside. For the first time ever though, I was able to explain why I hate going out to eat. I really could hear every tiny sound and every conversation in the room. It was extremely overwhelming. Today I read this. The second thing listed for possible causes, airbag deployment. I was involved in a pretty nasty car accident last April, so now I'm wondering, maybe? Maybe it's had more of an effect than I thought. I've recently been going to the doctor for severe migraines and feeling tired all the time. Blood work is normal except for low vitamin d. Hmm.. I'll definitely bring this with me to my next appointment. Thank you for the article. The world really is too loud!
Please do NOT use a fan at work. THAT could very well be the cause of someone else's torment. I have a neighbor in the cube next to mine that runs a small fan. It is rather loud - I can hear it NOW, over the music emanating from my headphones. I want to take it and throw it out the window.
I have to carry a 2-way radio at work, and be available in case I am called. The problem is, when the conversational traffic is very heavy, my nerves start to get on edge and it makes me feel so irritated. I hate the noise! It's tough to concentrate at times, and tuning out the noise is impossible, because I have to be able to hear it if I'm the one being paged. I wondered if there was a disorder associated with this. Thanks for the place to vent and discuss!
I'm new to the non-stop headaches, chanting in my head. I'm going to see a nurologist soon. I found out I have Lyme disease again, tmj,anxiety, depressed,sleep epna. I'm scared I've lost my balance, everyday chores and driving. What's happening to me
It's good to know other people have similar problems. I have ptsd which leads to hypervigilance, anxiety and stress. One way this manifests is by noise sensitivity which gets worse when overstimulated,lacking sleep or other stresses are added. Machine noises, building works, repetitive or sudden noises, music (especially people's headphones) etc cause irritation and stress. Can feel frightening at the time as I worry whether things will remain this way but it's helping to have therapy and meditation which helps to make me feel more in control of the emotions caused. Just got to remind myself of all the coping mechanisms and use them regularly. Hoping it gets better. All the best to all of you who are dealing with these stresses.
The people I work with scream in each others faces I just want to walk up to them and tell them to shut the hell up!
Help me. I had no idea what was causing this, I can remember as a child getting anxiety when we returned from camping because of the noise. It is from noise I can not find the source of, noise I can not control, repeatative noises, high pitches,erratic sounds like heavy metal music. I don't seem to notice it if I am drunk which I no longer drink so...Early on my sister tied me to the piano stool, after dressing me up with a wig and makeup then shone a flood light in my face and played opera music. I thought that was the cause but....Oh could someone in Manitoba help me please!
I have this issue and am about to start a job where headphones are not an option. Any ideas for that? Employers are supposed to make accommodations, but I don't want to disclose my mental illness.
i have this. I had my ears tested and i can hear really high pitched sounds (so high they stop the testing). Their advice was to use musicians earplugs to block electric sounds (fridges, lights etc). I also dont go to malls much. Unfortunatley my job is around a lot of machines, so i find myself irritable and snappy by the end of the day. I go to nature to debrief with nice sounds. And yes, music is the saviour also. Im not sure what the link to tmj is though? I have that too. Thanks for raising this.
I have anxiety, ptsd and insomnia. I'm always sensitive to sounds but when my anxiety is high or I haven't slept well, I'm super sensitive to sound. I've used earbuds, noise canceling headphones and earplugs but sometimes I feel unsafe in complete silence so using headphones or earplugs can make things worse for me. I recently purchased a pair of filtering earplugs and they are great. They are good at just lowering the sound level instead of blocking it out completely. They reduce sounds by about 12 decibels whereas standard foam earplugs reduce sounds by between 20-30 decibels depending on which ones you buy. I am not a medical professional, I'm just offering a suggestion based on my experience. I suggest talking to your doctor before using earplugs.
http://www.getdubs.com is the website where you can learn about these earplugs. They are available on Amazon and many other sites.
I tend to stay home a lot because of this and work night shift to avoid so much chaos in my head due to noise.
I feel angry and violent toward the source of the noise. I want to smash the washing machine. I want to scream 'just shut up!' at people who talk louder than they need to I work in a noisy office, but think I would be better in a remote monastery.
I took all the stuff out of a closet in my house, and made it into a "safe" area for myself. I have blankets and pillows, and when the noise gets to be too much, I go in there, lie down, and turn off the light. I often do breathing exercises to slow my breathing and relaxation exercises.
I get angry to the point where I want to hurt the person making the noise. I don't think the listed symptoms apply to me so maybe I'm just insane? Haha but in all seriousness does anybody else feel trapped and have anger come over you like that?
Although I take medication for depression, and do consider myself highly sensitive to noise, I think I am pretty well adjusted; I just like things quiet, and that gets compounded when the noise that irritates me is coming from the lack of consideration of others. Yes, there is anger, but I do not believe it is my own anxiety disorder as much as a cultural/societal disorder that forces large populations to live in limited spaces with close proximity to others.
i have never heard of noise sensitivity but after reading your post here i know i must have some form of it. my sensitivity is definitely linked to my anxiety. when my anxiety levels are high i cannot tolerate the sound of people chewing food or people breathing. it makes me very angry to the point i want to shout and curse (things i NEVER do). i also cannot tolerate crowds (inside or out) b/c the noise level sets something off in me and i feel highly agitated, short of breath and totally overloaded. to cope i have to leave the situation. i hate the sound of white noise and cannot tolerate background noises like tv or radio. so, i need to find a quiet place. often i stick ear buds in my ears to block out the sound of everything but my own breathing. i also have to check my thoughts and make sure i'm reign in the worry or anxious thoughts that kind of get out of control in these moments. i often pray too in these moments to gain some equilibrium. and, i also find the outdoors very soothing. so, i often escape to the river or the woods with my camera. after a couple of hours i often find myself feeling relaxed and well enough to return. i'm kinda relieved to know that this is not uncommon - noise sensitivity - it makes me feel more normal. thanks for the post!