Fibromyalgia Action UK

sensory issues

sensory problems , having recently started to experience more severe problems with vision and hearing , becoming sensitive to sound and some movement ( disturbed vision ) Is this yet another symptom of fibro ? I seem to unable to cut out background noise and high volume noises and generally finding noise hard to deal with , visually things seem to jump out at me .... advise please x

7 Replies

Hi,I too suffer from being able to hear noises that i shouldnt but it doesnt happen all the time. For me its hearing watches tick like wrist watches, clocks etc when it happens the constent tick tick drives me mad!!!!!! When im at work if there is a lot of noise around me and a collegue speaks to me i cant hear them and they could be sitting opposite me, when we had new people join i had to pre warn them that if they speak to me an i dont answer im not ignoring them - although havent had this problem for a while as been signed off work for nearly 4months!!!!!! I can hear other noises too i shouldnt but it seems to be high pitched noises.

Take Care

Jo xx


my main one is a sensitivity to bright lights! sunshine hurts!

hugs xx


Hi jaynev,

I have problems with bright lights, noise and movement. My husband has named it 'Bentalls Syndrome' after a local Shopping Centre.

I don't go in there any more, because the last time I did, coping with the incessant noises of people chattering and music and noises from shops, together with the bright lights and random movement of all the people became so unbearable I just wanted to lash out and belt someone after about 10 minutes.

I find the best way to cope is to wear wrap round polarized sunglasses whenever the sun shines, listening to something I can focus on (like an audio book) on my ipod to block out every other sound and staying out of overcrowded places. I'm getting quite used to late night shopping!

happy hugs, kate :)


Hello Jayne! Thanks for your message, you have touched upon something I am sure we can all relate to. With Fibromyalgia all our senses seem heightened. We are more sensitive to light, heat, sound and touch.

Ultra-sensitivity to sensations occurs with about half of those diagnosed with Fibro. Sound can be magnified to the point where it becomes unbearable; you can hear a clock ticking loudly, or the sound of someone nearby swallowing normally. Lights become blinding, smells overwhelm. The sensitivity tends to come and go. This over sensitivity can be really frustrating, we can feel freezing on a warm Summer day. It's always best to take an extra layer of clothing for when this happens. Relaxation techniques tend to help with temperature sensitivity. When we are relaxed we tend to be warmer.

Bright lights, sounds that are numerous or loud and even light touch can trigger pain and cognitive difficulties quickly. Dark glasses and ear plugs can come in handy! Keeping lights at home on a dimmer switch so you can regulate it according to how you are managing that day. I also find my IPad invaluable, when I am feeling really sensitive I can keep myself amused with either music played at my chosen volume level and I can control the brightness of the screen too if I feel like relaxing, warming up and reading! :) :)


It seems very common - not being able to deal with busy shopping malls where there is a lot of background noise, movement and lights is typical and something I remember well!


I find my hearing in one ear is extremely sensitive loud noise hurts difficult when your partner is deaf ........ but my sense of smell is affected the other way it has gone completely I smell nothing, no babies nappies no flowers nothing I am now becoming neurotic about how I smell..... God forbid..... There is nothing worse than personal smells. so now I ab-lute and powder excessively! Gins


Thanks for all your input sometimes I feel like I am going MAD :0)


You may also like...