Auditory Overload

Senior man blocking sound with his fingers

After your stroke, you may be highly sensitive to sound. It’s a common side effect called auditory overload. Basically, your brain just can’t keep up with the amount of sensory information it receives. Symptoms of auditory overload include:

  • Inability to concentrate on a task or speaker
  • Fidgeting
  • Impulsiveness
  • Repeating a task over and over 

Auditory overload can happen at any time. Parties and other social gatherings increase its likelihood. Here are a few tips to help recover your senses:

  • Distance yourself from noise as much as possible.
  • Get lots of rest before attending large social gatherings. When you’re tired, your auditory system will not process sound as effectively.
  • Avoid excessive use of alcohol.
  • Ask the host to turn down or turn off the music if it’s competing with people’s conversations.
  • Wear earplugs to help reduce the intensity of the noise and decrease the amount of stimulation your system is trying to process.