Migraine hacks I wish for: Psychic Earplugs

I’m back for another installment of my new Migraine Hacks I Wish For Series.

File this under Impossible Inventions or Things I Wish Existed.

As someone who has dealt with migraine for 20 (!) years now, I have gotten acquainted with my disease and its manifestations fairly well.  Of course we all know that migraine is tricky—new triggers can emerge, patterns can alter, and every time we think we know the ins and outs of our particular condition, things can change. One thing that has remained consistent for me is my sensitivity to sound whether or not I am in the middle of a migraine episode.

Sometimes loud noises bother me because they’re just obnoxious.  I press play on the stereo at home, forgetting that it was at full volume last time we were listening to it. The sound blasts out and I can’t cover your ears fast enough.  I may not get a migraine, but it’s aggravating all the same.

Other times, my sensitivity to noise is a harbinger of the migraine to come. It’s as if the attack is already on its way, the dominoes set in motion, but I don’t even realize it until I notice I can’t tolerate the loud sounds around me, including everyday noises others can live with easily, such as the REALLY LOUD hand dryers in public restrooms.

And when I have a migraine, loud sounds are the worst. It’s as if the rest of the world is at volume level three and my personal speakers are cranked up to a nine or ten.  Sometimes I feel a migraine coming on and can help keep it at bay by noticing the early signs and making sure I steer clear of potential triggers. Jim will ask me to listen to his newest track (he’s a musician), and I’ll listen but ask him to turn down the volume a bit first.

But on to my Migraine Hack #2. (My first wished-for hack was for magical glasses, described here. While there are some glasses that can really help, I don’t think there’s the chance that my specific wished-for glasses would ever come to fruition.)

I want a super-duper earplug/ear covering device that will know of any loud noises before they happen. The Psychic Earplugs will anticipate sound waves before they can reach my ears, and they will activate post-haste. Before the loud noise can affect me, the Psychic Earplugs will engage and my ears will be blocked against the offensive sounds as long as they last.  They work everywhere: are you in a public restroom right near someone who’s about to use that obnoxiously loud hand-dryer? Are you in the city about to walk past a construction worker with a jackhammer? Are you on a plane next to an infant who’s about to wail?

Let’s pretend Psychic Earplugs are a reality. Where do you think you’d use them most frequently? In what sort of situation would they come in handy for you?

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