Everyone knows how it feels to be annoyed by loud music, accosted by overly bright lights, bothered by crowds, and overwhelmed by a world that moves too quickly. Most people are able to ignore irritating sensations and focus on the task at hand. But millions of people, as much as 15 percent of the population, can't tune out harmless sensations, and instead react to them with irritation, anger, and alarm, and may even experience pain. As developmental psychologist Sharon Heller explains in this important new book, they suffer from sensory defensiveness and desperately need help coping.
Heller, who is sensory defensive herself, brings both personal and professional perspective to bear. Sensory defensiveness, she points out, can mimic, result in, or exaggerate many psychiatric conditions, including anxiety, panic disorder, depression, obsessive-compulsive behavior, or anorexia. Sufferers often go through years of psychotherapy, antidepressants, and anti-anxiety medication with little or no relief from the constant tension as sensations from their environment hinder and overwhelm them in their daily lives, often dramatically. Now, with Too Loud, Too Bright, Too Fast, Too Tight, sufferers and those who love them can better understand this easily misdiagnosed condition and learn what they can do to enhance quality of life. Your world may be Too Loud, Too Bright, Too Fast, Too Tight, but through a holistic treatment approach that includes sensorimotor strategies from occupational therapy, along with interventions from many other disciplines, it is possible to make a difficult condition far easier to endure.