Diseases

Noise hypersensitivity (hyperacusis)

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For some people everyday sounds like barking dogs or telephone bells are a pain. They react nervously or aggressively to it and can even get palpitations, hypertension and sweats. Doctors talk about hyperacusis when there is a hypersensitivity to all sounds.

Article overviewSound hypersensitivity (hyperacusis)

  • Hyperakutsis: Even quiet is too loud
  • Hyperacusis: Many causes are possible
  • Hyperacusis symptoms
  • Hyperacusis: examinations
  • Hyperacusis: therapy

Hyperakutsis: Even quiet is too loud

People with hyperacusis find even moderately loud or even quiet noises uncomfortable. Although the volume of such sounds is actually well below the pain threshold, it causes symptoms such as palpitations or restlessness in those affected. People with tinnitus are especially affected by hyperacusis.

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Hyperacusis: Many causes are possible

Hyperacusis can have different causes. Doctors suspect that the processing of auditory signals in the brain is disturbed.

Usually, the human brain distinguishes important from unimportant sounds and fades out the latter. For example, a mother is awake at the smallest noise of her baby, while street noise lets her sleep peacefully. In people with hyperacusis, this mechanism does not seem to work.

  • Frequently, the increased sensitivity to noise occurs after a hearing loss or in people with tinnitus.
  • Stress can affect the hearing signals and thus cause hyperacusis.
  • If those concerned are afraid of loud noises and retreat into the silence, this can intensify a hyperacusis.
  • Migraine can cause a temporary hyperacusis.
  • Certain neurological conditions such as epilepsy, multiple sclerosis or facial paralysis (facial paralysis) can lead to hyperacusis.
  • Various substances, such as drugs such as acetylsalicylic acid, quinine and vitamin B6, can change the perception of hearing and thus trigger hyperacusis.
  • Hyperacusis is also possible as a result of otosclerosis surgery.

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