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How can you manage sound sensitivity caused by migraine?

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  • Avoid concerts, movies, big parties, or other places you know will be loud.
  • Wear noise-canceling headphones or earplugs.
  • Cover your windows with drapes (which will block light, too), and install thick carpet to absorb sounds in your home.
  • Turn on a white noise machine. This gentle sound can drown out louder noises.

You might not want to avoid sound entirely. If you surround yourself with silence, you can become even more sensitive, and that could lead to headaches that are more painful.

SOURCES:

American Academy of Ophthalmology: "Photophobia: Looking for Causes and Solutions."

Cleveland Clinic: "Migraine Headaches."

Headache : "Noise as a trigger for headaches: relationship between exposure and sensitivity."

Headache Pain : "Phenotypic features of chronic migraine."

Mayo Clinic: "Migraine symptoms and causes," "Migraine Treatment."

Nature Neuroscience: "A neural mechanism for exacerbation of headache by light."

Neurology : "The anterior insula shows heightened interictal intrinsic connectivity in migraine without aura."

NHS: "Migraine and light sensitivity."

Reviewed by Carol DerSarkissian on July 21, 2019

SOURCES:

American Academy of Ophthalmology: "Photophobia: Looking for Causes and Solutions."

Cleveland Clinic: "Migraine Headaches."

Headache : "Noise as a trigger for headaches: relationship between exposure and sensitivity."

Headache Pain : "Phenotypic features of chronic migraine."

Mayo Clinic: "Migraine symptoms and causes," "Migraine Treatment."

Nature Neuroscience: "A neural mechanism for exacerbation of headache by light."

Neurology : "The anterior insula shows heightened interictal intrinsic connectivity in migraine without aura."

NHS: "Migraine and light sensitivity."

Reviewed by Carol DerSarkissian on July 21, 2019

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