Welcome to my post for the Autism Awareness blog hop. This is a blog hop organised by RJ Scott that happens in April every year. This year the blog hop focuses on how people on the autism spectrum can react quite differently to taste, touch, hearing, sight and smell. You can see the masterpost for the blog hop with links to all the other posts here.
Hypersensitive hearing may mean a person with autism won’t be able to cut out background noise, which often leads to difficulties concentrating.
As the parent of two children who are currently on the waiting list for ASD assessments, this is a subject close to my heart. Both of my children are easily distracted by background noise (as am I). As we are also a noisy family prone to accidentally humming, fidgeting and whistling we tend to drive each other rather crazy 😉
As I type this, I can hear so many sounds: the cat crunching biscuits loudly in the next room; my son talking to his friends via Skype at the other end of the house; my daughter upstairs singing along to music in her bedroom; the fridge is humming; there’s a plane flying overhead, water whooshing through pipes somewhere; and the tick of the kitchen clock is a constant irritation because I’m thinking about it.
As I mentioned above, I’m a fairly noise-sensitive person. My sensory filter is a little wonky, but most of the time I am usually able tune out background noises as long as I’m not too stressed out, or as long as the sounds aren’t too loud or piercing (someone whistling within earshot pulls me out of whatever I’m doing and makes me instantly ragey). The sound of the kids’ talking/singing is getting on my nerves right now as I type, and normally I would have shut the door… but I deliberately left it open while I wrote this post in order to empathise. It’s helping me to imagine how incredibly frustrating it would be to be completely unable to tune out that constant tapestry of background noise. No wonder people with autism easily become overloaded with sensory information to the point of a meltdown.