Noise irritability

I just moved to a new apartment with a few housemates, and I can’t stand them being noisy. Almost every afternoon and evening, they talk and laugh loudly, and even being in my room this drives me crazy. I spoke with a friend about this, and he said that his brother, who has anxiety, was reacting similarly in their home. After a few searches on the internet, I found that this can be associated with ocd also. I am curious to know what some of you guys might think. Many thanks in advance.

Hey @billyg, welcome to the community. I believe you have hyperawareness OCD reading your story, but you need to consult a specialist to be sure. My advice will be to do your best not to get in conflict with your housemates before talking to a specialist. You should also try to identify the reasons for your irritability. You might have moved to a new town or have a stressful daily life contributing to that. We are here to help, so keep us updated with your situation.

I want to add that you can try noise-canceling headphones and scented candles for relaxation. I know it’s not a problem solver, but it will help in the short run so that you are less irritable.

I am sorry to hear about your problem, @billyg. I would suggest you try some reassurance techniques that background noise is just there and it is not your enemy. Additionally, you should realize that the power of staying concentrated lies within you, no matter any kind of environmental distractions.
You might also try finding a sport that will physically exhaust you so that you will not have so much energy noticing what is going on around you.

I would suggest the author to consider living alone or with someone who he knows really well. I am not trying to discourage him but it will most likely take some time and hard work until he starts accepting the habits of others. During that period there might be conflicts and even more frustration arising.

Thank you so much for the effort to give me some advice, friends. I am positively surprised.
I will try some relaxation techniques, noise-canceling headphones, and being more outside for now. I hope it will help until we decide to move out with my childhood friend. He almost doesn’t irritate me in any way.

I am happy about your decision @billyg. Stay strong and consistent during your journey to see the best results.

I am happy that my advice was helpful to you too. Noise-canceling headphones are a pretty convenient solution. There are also many affordable options on the market.

If the headphones don’t work, practice some hit and run :upside_down_face:

I bought some good ones, and they work most of the time. I mean, they help me most of the time. I understand that I need a long-term solution to numb my irritability from all that background noise.

It’s not funny someone telling me to do what I’m constantly stopping myself from doing.

Long-term solutions are the best. However, short-term solutions or minor changes can also do wonders and prevent many bad things from happening.

True :slight_smile: I am doing well for now. However, when I’m at work, I can not use headphones, and sometimes the background noise there makes me angry, wanting to run away.

Then maybe you need professional advice for that situation. However, don’t lose hope or feel angry at yourself. There is a solution out there waiting for you to discover it.

I know I will find a solution, but it has to be relatively soon. The fear of people thinking that I am crazy and possibly acting on my irritability creeps me out.

Relax, mate. If you don’t have time or opportunity for a doctor at the moment, read about ACT or ERP therapies and try to perform them on your own. There are other therapies, too, but start with those as they are the most popular, and there is a lot of information online on how to do them.

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You are absolutely right. It takes some time reading and patience to understand but doing therapy on your own is a good start. That’s how I started ERP before visiting a therapist.

I get irritated by noise too. I don’t want to go to a therapist but fix my high sensitivity naturally. Anyone who knows good techniques?

Someone mentioned headphones above. Also, except for avoiding noisy places and sleeping with earplugs, I don’t know what to advise you. Maybe it’s a good idea to visit a therapist as particular medications can help as a start.

You start doing mindfulness on your own. There are multiple self-help guides about it. Your irritability might improve by acknowledging how you feel about all background noises and accepting them. @Poul