does anyone know what will help calming sensory overload?

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campboy92
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23 Jan 2015, 12:40 am

it's getting real bad - to the point where i cant go on the internet or go on the phone or check my email, and I'm in a contract to finish editing a book i wrote but the sensory overload of technology is physically hurting my brain, it's like someone is dropping glass everytime i look at something. it's a very real/physical - not made up thing.

i am on a gluten/soy/dairy/corn/grain free diet and haven't been meditating lately (mindfulness) which have helped.

i'm not going on meds or anything, and am in therapy but ANY advice on how to help this? everything also echo in my head too, i have really bad internal echolalia - anyways, i really would appreciate any advice.

thank u thank u thank, ouch this hurts.



GreatAlli
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23 Jan 2015, 12:57 am

I've never had sensory overload in the way you seem to be, but sensory overload is the bane of my existence. The only way I'm able to get past it when I'm overloaded is to completely isolate myself with no outside sensory input that I'm not in control of (no air brushing my skin, no flickering of lights, no noises I cannot manipulate myself, etc) and things eventually return back to a point where I can once again brace the outside world for awhile.



SoMissunderstood
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23 Jan 2015, 2:39 am

campboy92 wrote:
it's getting real bad - to the point where i cant go on the internet or go on the phone or check my email, and I'm in a contract to finish editing a book i wrote but the sensory overload of technology is physically hurting my brain, it's like someone is dropping glass everytime i look at something. it's a very real/physical - not made up thing.

i am on a gluten/soy/dairy/corn/grain free diet and haven't been meditating lately (mindfulness) which have helped.

i'm not going on meds or anything, and am in therapy but ANY advice on how to help this? everything also echo in my head too, i have really bad internal echolalia - anyways, i really would appreciate any advice.

thank u thank u thank, ouch this hurts.

I have just spent 6 months off the internet due to unavailability (except at an overcrowded library) and lack of funds.
I still had my laptop though which I played solitaire and minesweeper on.

Now, I was just given a cheap wi-fi dongle with pre-paid 3 gigs on it and I have to be very careful how much I use - limiting it to 5 gigs a month, costing me @ $50/month. I can't even afford that, to be honest...but it will suffice...it has to.

Before that, I was pretty much addicted to the internet 18/7.

Going without the internet, I had to live in the 'big, wide world' out there and I found that real life stimulated me more, but in a more positive way.

Things like going to the beach for a swim once a week....or just sitting on a jetty, looking out over the huge, vast blue ocean has a calming effect on me...breathing in the fresh, salty air with all of those negative ions floating about...

Going into the forest (rainforest) and going on bushwalks also relaxes me while I get exercise.

To 'detox' off the internet requires sensory diversions...like sleeping with a white-noise generator on - white noise totally cancels out information/sensory overload.

A Himalayan pink salt lamp also works wonders.

Just surround yourself with things you found have relaxed you in the past - ambient or classical music, soft and fluffy blankets, glo-stars on the ceiling- a fibre-optic lamp or salt lamp, sandalwood incense - things your tired, overworked senses just go 'aaah, that's much better' to.

It's different for everybody, but I am sure you'll be able to work out what you like and what suits you (if my suggestions do not) and I wish you all the best with it.



QuiversWhiskers
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23 Jan 2015, 6:11 am

This sounds like visual defensiveness. It's like touch defensiveness. I have this visual thing too. What I sometimes do is stare at material that is all one color. It's best to just lay down while doing it so you aren't using any other muscles. The solid-color underside of the bed comforter is one.

Something else that might help long-term, is to "follow the sun" by not exposing yourself to any artificial light in the hours of darkness. If the sun is down, so is the TV, tablet, computer, phone, lights, lamps, etc. Use candlelight (unscented) in the hours of darkness. This helps with sleep too and visual defensiveness thrives on poor sleep habits, in my experience.

Visual defensiveness is hard to get rid of when it's because of computer and study/writing use. Actually, it's just hard to get rid of regardless of cause. If your eyes are hurting, you can try very cold compresses to the eyes and forehead.

I wish I could say more but I can't think of anything else. The best cure is no screen light but that isn't a possibility right now for you. This issue made me really, really sick in college and contributed to my not finishing.

I hope you can get your book editing finished soon.



corroonb
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23 Jan 2015, 6:25 am

Have you tried deep pressure? Weighted/heavy blankets? I have some of the problems you describe but my sensory problems are mostly auditory rather than visual. A weighted blanket really calms me down and helps me sleep better and feel less anxious while I'm using it.

Have you tried using coloured or dark lens to filter light? You can also get apps for tablets or phones which allow you to dim the screen a lot. Also simply avoiding visual stimulation whenever you feel overwhelmed is probably the most effective solutions.

Occupational therapists offer sensory integration training but as my GP put it, it's more talked about than practised especially with high-functioning adults.



campboy92
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23 Jan 2015, 10:24 am

Thank you guys. It means the world to have your empathy instead of judgement. It's so safe here!

I'll try all of those things out. It's been really hard and if never used to be this way before but I'm surrendering and accepting. Do you think BioFeedback could help ? I'm scared to do it.



Bookmaker
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23 Jan 2015, 10:52 am

I am able to diffuse sensory overload by listening to music with headphones, as most of my overload is auditory. Listening to Enya works best for me.

http://youtu.be/QZgOBJWo5YQ



LupaLuna
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23 Jan 2015, 11:19 am

Bookmaker wrote:
I am able to diffuse sensory overload by listening to music with headphones, as most of my overload is auditory. Listening to Enya works best for me.

http://youtu.be/QZgOBJWo5YQ


Here are some other bands to look at as well.





campboy92
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23 Jan 2015, 11:30 am

Music without words would be great too



Bookmaker
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23 Jan 2015, 12:03 pm

LupaLuna wrote:
Here are some other bands to look at as well.


Those are nice. Thank you.



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23 Jan 2015, 1:33 pm

I find putting together jigsaw puzzles a good diversion--or playing scrabble on the computer.



androbot01
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23 Jan 2015, 2:44 pm

Well, you said no meds, but I only have one answer - Seroquel. I subscribe to the better living through chemistry model. :wink:



campboy92
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23 Jan 2015, 2:55 pm

I don't want to take meds, so please don't suggest them to me because it makes my OCD worst and will not help me. Autism is about accepting and managing, I don't need to take a pill.



androbot01
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23 Jan 2015, 3:00 pm

That's the thing about forums - you can't control how people will respond. However, I certainly don't want to exacerbate your OCD.
My way of accepting and managing is to take several pills (as well as mindfulness and body relaxation.) But each of us responds individually.