Asperger's and Sensory Difficulties
(Ansonia, CT, United States)
I am 37 and was diagnosed with Asperger's Syndrome a few years ago. I have always had oversensitvity to touch and texture.
In my late teens-20s I developed sensitivity to sound and colors. I have a strong startle reaction to loud sounds. Too many of them or too loudly, and i will run from the scene, screaming.
In the autistic community, they call this a meltdown. It takes me a few hours to be able to return to the scene, and days to come down from it, provided its quiet. The more loud sounds, the longer I stay in the state of agitation and anxiety, prone to having another meltdown.
Because of my asperger's, i'm told by all my mental health professionals it is impossible to stop this reaction. Even my APRN that prescribes my medication agrees, though she can't help me with it.
My clinician and case manager have to help me with that. I have to wear open necklines and loose, soft clothing to be comfortable. I pull the tags out of everything. I can't stand things touching my neck, even seat belts, which protect my life.
I have had tactile sensitivity most of my life, though my parents never recognized it as a problem. When i started having to cover my ears when my mother vacuumed, she didn't recognize that it might be a difficulty processing sound, or know enough about autism to know to get me tested.
This is why I wasn't diagnosed until age 35.