Sensory overload occurs when we get more sensory input than our brains are able to process. It can cause strong feelings of overwhelm, anxiety, and even panic or physical pain. Anyone can experience sensory overload! However, experiencing sensory overload often is particularly common for autistic people. ADHDers, and it can also be associated with anxiety and PTSD.
What causes sensory over load is often very personal : you could be hypersensitive to sounds, but not smells, for example. Here are some tips for sensory overload :
- Get a dimmer for your lights, or use a lamp instead of overhead lights.
- Practice relaxing breathing techniques.
- Carry noise cancelling headphones or earplugs with you.
- Remove tags and labels from new clothes.
- Carry a fidget toy with you.
- Schedule time for rest between activities.
- Wear layers that are easy to remove and adjust.
- Identify your triggers and communicate them to the people in your life.
- Remember to eat, drink, and sleep regularly.
- Wear sunglasses or glasses with tinted lenses.
- Use unscented products.
All of these tips won’t apply to all sensory sensitivities, so take what sounds like it’d work for you, and share you own tips in the comment section.