For many people, the everyday noise that defines life in the twenty-first century can be debilitating. Simple things like the television, vacuum cleaners or even conversation can be sources of stress, anxiety and physical pain. But how do you know if you’re sound sensitive? And what can you do about it?

In this quiz, we’re going to interrogate a few of the key signs of sound sensitivity. But remember, sound sensitivity includes a wide range of different traits and conditions. Your sound sensitivity may be a sign of hyperacusis or misophonia. If you feel everyday noises are causing you pain or reducing your quality of life, it’s important you consult your GP and get a referral for an audiologist.

For now, let’s start the quiz.

  1. Do you find that your friends or family set the radio or television ‘too loud’ and that they don’t seem to notice?
  1. Do you find yourself feeling stressed in the presence of loud noises, such as crying children or loud engines?
  1. Do you feel you sometimes need to go to a quiet room ‘just to get away from things’?
  1. Do you find yourself getting angry or aggravated when things get ‘too loud’?
  1. Does your mood change suddenly depending on how noisy the room is?
  1. Are there certain sounds you ‘just can’t stand’?
  1. Do certain sounds cause you to feel nauseous or to develop a headache?
  1. Do you find yourself adjusting your behaviour to avoid noisy situations such as shopping at odd hours or going for walks at night?

Have you answered YES to every question?

It’s quite likely you are sound sensitive. This may require a consultation with your GP to find the source of the issue or lifestyle adjustments to avoid the pain and anxiety that comes with persistent exposure to loud noises. Ear plugs can be a great solution for every day noise, allowing you to work, relax, and sleep more comfortably.

At the same time, it may be possible to restore your comfort through incorporating a strong pair of ear plugs into your every day life. Ear plugs can be worn while shopping, while working, or even just while out and about. They can successfully dampen the most disruptive noises, allowing you to retain a sense of health and wellbeing without having to sacrifice important aspects of daily life.

For a high level of sound blocking, we recommend the Flare Isolate. Made with a dense metal core, the Isolate blocks a remarkable 32 decibels of noise when properly fitted. This will significantly dampen the volume of

Have you answered YES to four or more?

If you’ve answered yes to more than three of these questions, it’s likely that you’re at least a little bit sound sensitive. While there are many lifestyle changes that can facilitate sound sensitive people, not all of them are appropriate for living with friends and family. For example you might:

  • Ensure you listen to music or television at a lower volume.
  • Allow yourself quiet time throughout the day to give your ears a rest.

At the same time, there are always going to be situations where things get loud. In these situations, a good set of medium strength ear plugs can be the difference between participation and isolation. Here, ear plugs might make it possible to attend loud shopping centres, your child’s sporting match, or even that concert you’ve craved. For a simple and cost-efficient medium strength ear plug, have a look at the Earjobs MusicMate Pro. Blocking 23dB of sound, with high fidelity filters designed for live music, you can hear your surroundings clearly at a lower volume.

Have you answered NO to all or most of these questions?

In that case, congratulations: your sound tolerance is normal. That doesn’t mean you shouldn’t protect your ears, though. Sound sensitivity can develop over time as a result of hearing damage. If you attend live music, ride a motorcycle, work with power tools or otherwise expose yourself to loud sounds, you should be wearing ear plugs to ensure your hearing health for years to come. We have a variety of ear plugs optimised for different activities, designed to protect your ears and keep them performing at the highest level for years to come. For you, one of these guides may be appropriate:

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