Who Has Sensory Sensitivity?

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We all have sensory sensitivity to some extent.

First, we all have sensory sensitivity.  We are all sensitive to our senses!

Second, for some people, this is a problem because they are over or under-sensitive compared to the rest of us. 

Third, this extra level of sensory sensitivity includes people of all ages. 

Fourth, extra sensitivity can occur to any of the eight senses. 

Fifth, it can also occur to more than one at a time. 

And lastly, it can occur as a short-term thing or something that happens across the life span.

So, we are all sensitive to our senses. That just means we experience them.  To clarify, we all see, hear, taste, touch, smell, move, balance, and have an internal body sense. We all have these eight senses.

But as mentioned, some people have more sensitivity to their senses.  They have difficulties with their senses.  Their body and brain do not receive information from their senses in the same way other people do.  As a result, they may not respond to their senses in the same way as most other people.

Diverse group of people, different ages, standing with arms around each other.

More sensory sensitivity examples.

  • For instance, noise may bother them.  You may see people wear noise-canceling headphones to listen to music or even children wearing earmuffs to block out sound
  • Alternatively, flickering lights or blue light may bother them.  So much so, they wear special glasses.
  • On the other hand, they might be bothered by the touch of small things like tags.  Sensory-friendly clothing helps!

Moreover, many different disorders, disabilities or differences can contribute to people having sensory sensitivity.  Besides, sensory sensitivity can happen to anyone at any age.

Furthermore, people with sensory sensitivity may even experience what is called sensory overload.

There is no rule to sensory sensitivity.

However, having a disorder, disability, or difference on the helpful list we provide below does not mean you will automatically have sensory sensitivity.  Nonetheless, it just means you are more likely too.

Furthermore, this list has been generated by our primary research with interviews, surveys, and polls.  Likewise, we have completed a review of the literature.

In addition, we have also added to the list when people or groups reached out to us to self-identify as having sensory sensitivity.

Finally, if you think something else should be added to this list, please reach out to us.

Group of diverse kids playing at the field together

Diagnoses, disorders, disabilities that make you more likely to have sensory sensitivity.

A
  • Alzheimer’s Disease (AD)
  • Anxiety
  • Attention Deficit Disorder (ADD)
  • Attention Deficit Hyperactive Disorder (ADHD)
  • Autism, Asperger’s, Autism Spectrum Disorder, High functioning autism, Autistic person
C
  • Concussion, Post-concussion Syndrome (PCS)
D
E
F
  • Fibromyalgia
H
  • Hearing loss, hard of hearing
  • Highly sensitive person (HSP)
I
  • Intellectual disability (ID)
L
M
  • Meniere’s disease
  • Mental disorders, mental illness
  • Myalgic encephalomyelitis/chronic fatigue syndrome (ME/CFS)
N
  • Non-verbal learning disability (NVLD)
P
  • Post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD)
S
  • Sensory disorder or Sensory processing disorder (SPD)
  • Sensory integration disorder (SID)
  • Synesthesia
T
  • Tourette’s syndrome
  • Trauma, early childhood trauma
  • Traumatic Brain Injury (TBI), mild Traumatic Brain Injury (mTBI)
V
  • Vestibular disorder

Furthermore, most of these disabilities, disorders, or differences are long-term and chronic.  In other words, something that someone will experience for a long time.

Infographic on sensory overload from sensory sensitivity.

As well, to help spread the word and awareness, we have created an infographic.  It lists the disabilities, disorders, or differences that contribute to people having sensory sensitivity.  Moreover, people who are more likely to experience sensory overload because of it.  Additionally, you can also download it.  First, open the link.  Then, save it as a picture.

People who experience sensory overload infographic.

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