Sensitivity to noise in Multiple Sclerosis


Hyperacusis is characterized by an increased sensitivity to everyday sounds. Most of the time, this hypersensitivity is accompanied by an aversion to the sounds, even if they are not typically considered unpleasant. In fact, you may be surprised that you are so easily bothered by noise. You may also feel head or ear pain, generalized physical discomfort, and annoyance in response to noises, even if they are soft or high pitched.

Hyperacusis can affect one or both ears and you may have a heightened ability to hear certain noises even as you lose the ability to hear other sounds or frequencies.

You may also experience tinnitus (ringing in the ears), dizziness, loss of balance, nausea, or vertigo along with your hypersensitivity to sounds. This is because the region in the brain that controls hearing also controls your sense of balance.

Hyperacusis can be quite deliberating and is not one of the best known symptoms of MS but can affect many of us.

Sometimes just a voice on the T.V. acts like the black board and chalk syndrome lol.

Thanks for that. Sorry it affects you so badly. Anne

Thank you I think it does a lot of people but perhaps they are not aware what it is. as it has many bits to it lol. xxxx

I have had short bursts of it and its just awful and so hard to deal with it makes me want to scream.

Yep. certain voices make me want to scream lol. its not all the time just happens, but its hypercusis as i had a discussion about it with my neuro.

It’s funny that this has been mentioned here, only the other day I was thinking how sudden sharp noises really do hit me hard.

It doesn’t have to be overly loud, just sharp piercing noises, if that makes sense.

This is a fairly new thing for me, I’ve not had a problem before, but recently it does effect me ?

Omg Crazy Chick !! This is me ! My husband says it’s all in my head. But I can’t stand talking on the radio or the TV that’s too loud. Especially made voices. I’m constantly fighting with my husband as I’m asking him to turn things down. I love loud music though in my car, so he says I’m being dramatic and that I only hate listening to things which I don’t personally like. I think music is something different. Or is he right and I’m a drama queen ? The TV / radio male voices being loud- literally annoy me so much, I can focus on nothing else.

No your right. think of a dog whistle ok. only the dog can hear it as it is as a certain pitch right.

Then listen to a voice someone talking either on T.V. or even youtube, AND and the pitch is so painful it makes you want to literally SCREAM. I had the exact same issues.

I was always telling my hubby to turn the T.V. down. sometimes he would talk to me a bit loud and i would want to literally HARM him. i know dramatic but it is true and is part of Hyperacusis. Music soothes the savage breast. I love music and it would just calm me down, but then i have had some music which has again that certain pitch and i would have to change it.

also Emily look at light sensitivy, for me the day i stopped going to supermarkets was because I couldnt bear all the lights he flurorescent lights would make me feel sick. even in my kitchen i rarely used the light. It was a horrible time for me, as hubby needed light and sound and i was the opposite, so i would go to bed early in my own room, lights off and sanctuary. and T.V. on low lol. it save me from bashing him ha ha.

If its male voices when he has the T.V. why not listen to some music with headphones this will distract the noise on the T.V. and bring calm to your household. Get him to read the link. I did with my hubby and he actually said he had it a bit too as he worked in engineer and could understand how i felt.

It does wax and wane. if it does become too bad talk to your MS nurse about it. but if music is your calm trigger then use it hun. xx

I have terrible light sensitivity! So strange you mention that. I always have to have low lighting and the curtains shut. When I’m in the car it’s the worst. It’s just too bright on a cloudy day.

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Its not in your head at all MS can affect almost everything.Its your hearing that can be very over sensitive.When i get it i find it very difficult to cope with and my mental health declines a bit too because of it.I also have trouble with my eyes been too sensitive and my smell too.

Really interesting read, I don’t have it as bad as you but I wasn’t aware it was a symptom. Good to know.

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I have this too, my partner is slightly hard of hearing so watching Tv is a nightmare so you have my sympathy.