Your Experience with Migraine and Heightened Sensitivity
Last updated: November 2021
We recently shared an article with you in the migraine community that talked about the potential link between sensory processing sensitivity and migraine. This can otherwise be translated to being a highly sensitive person (HSP), both during and in between migraine attacks. So many of you sounded off on your experiences with heightened sensitivity, that we wanted to share some of your stories!
"Sounds and smells are magnified unbearably”
“I have been told I am a ‘super-taster’ because I can taste subtle flavors…should have been a wine and chocolate taster—OH WAIT—they trigger migraines"
“My hubby tells me that I have an insane sense of smell at times. There are times that I swear that meat or chicken is bad and he smells no odor at all. I can also smell when someone is cooking bacon blocks away from our house!”
“The other day shaving my legs felt like sharp razor blades for hours later. The breeze blowing my hair on my skin drives me nuts sometimes too, ugh!!”
“I also can’t deal with the radio and most music. I definitely feel overwhelmed by the moods of others…I seem to take on everyone’s emotions."
“Sound is my worst sensitivity. Once I’ve tuned into an annoying noise, I get extremely agitated.”
“Oh yes, I can smell cigarettes, garbage, perfume, etc. a mile away!”
The Battle with the Sun
“I am so glad that my sensitivities are the norm for people with migraine. I live in Hawaii so I’m bombarded with bright sunny days and bright cloudy days! My prescription sunglasses are what I wear 90% of the time, sometimes even indoors!”
“I have a pair of prescription sunglasses that make all the difference plus earbuds to drown out the noise—makes all the difference! And sometimes I have to just ‘check out’ and spend some time alone!”
“True. Loud noises or simply the sun can set mine off, so I wear a good pair of sunglasses anytime I venture outside during sun up and sun down”
Avoiding Situations and People
“Very interesting. Just last week, I commented to my therapist that I often think I’d be content in a padded room or solitary confinement. This may explain why”
“This is something that is hard to explain to people. They just don’t get it”
“Definitely. Wish the scents in public bathrooms would be outlawed. Why do people bathe in their perfume and cologne?”
“We also go out of our way to avoid SMELLS in the public! To the point of looking ridiculous!!”
“I miss out a lot because I must avoid places with bright overhead lights, scented products, loud noise, stressful people and situations”
Feeling Relief that You Are Not Alone
“WOW! This describes me! I was diagnosed for the first time about a month ago with migraines. I’m still learning…like the fact that some days just a cross look can make me cry.
"Nice to know I’m not alone!”
“It’s nice to know it’s a real thing—makes me feel a little less crazy”
“What always had me perplexed was having some sort of symptoms every day. At least I don’t feel crazy anymore”
Let us know if you feel like your experience with migraine has led to difficulties with your sensory processing or makes your senses feel heightened, or even unbearable. How do you deal with these feelings when they become a challenge to your daily routine?
Have others downplayed your migraine pain?