PTSD and white noise

keystonegirl

New Here
A friend has recommended that I use white noise to help me sleep. I tend not to sleep very well when my boyfriend is away at work; the stress sometimes triggers an event. I've listened to snippets of white noise and I'm not too sure it would work. I don't want something that might make episodes worse. She swears by it; it seems to work very well for her. Sidenote: she also suffers from PTSD. I am ambivalent about its use; if it works then I'm all for it. But I also don't want something that could make my PTSD worse either. I was wondering if anyone has used this technique besides my friend. I believe in getting as many opinions as possible before I make a purchase. I appreciate any and all who respond to my query. 🔊
 

prynne

Confident
I use white noise videos on youtube to sleep. No need to pay for anything. If you search for "ambience" on youtube a ton of super specific noise combinations come up that are designed to help people fall asleep and stay asleep. A lot of them have visuals to go along with them too. Some are fantasy-themed or themed around a specific fictional universe.

Something else that helps me sleep, but is too odd for some people, is ASMR (also on youtube). I listen to ASMR almost every night as I fall asleep. These are videos of people making satisfying noises, softly speaking, or doing roleplays with the intent to relax the person who is watching. If you've ever gotten that shiver up your back when someone turns the pages on an old book, whispers in your ear, or taps their nails on the table, it feels like that. Some people make it sexual to get more views, but most ASMR isn't like that. Once I've watched a lot of videos by one person I begin to like them and trust that they won't make any loud noises that will wake me up. I also tend to watch the same video over and over again so I know exactly what is going to happen. When I fall asleep to a video like that, it makes me feel like someone is there with me, so I'm not as lonely or scared. It's been a life-changer for me when it comes to being able to fall asleep.

I wouldn't recommend looking it up for the first time right before you go to sleep, though. Just in case you hate it lol
 
Many nights I use a music playlist curated specially for sleeping to fall asleep to. Listening to the police radio also often puts me out like a light as well for some reason. White noise just isn't noisy enough for me I guess.
 

Friday

Moderator
White noise annoys the hell out of me, as I still hear …everything… there’s just static over the top of it.

But?

1. I have better hearing than most people.
2. I’m willing to try anything twice.

So IMO? Buy a white noise machine, that can be easily returned. (Hello, Amazon!). Try it. If it helps? Awesome. If not? Return it.
 

EveHarrington

MyPTSD Pro
White noise = a fan (with no breeze)

Electronic white noise ALWAYS has a “loop”. If you are hyper vigilant your brain will pick up on the loop and possibly make you worse. (I can only use machines with a fan mechanism inside as it means there’s no loop.) I have 2 in my bedroom and 2 in the living room. They are constantly running. I get more whenever I see them at a thrift store.
 

Huxley

Learning
I use a noise machine set to “heavy rain” sounds and it seems to help drown out small noises that used to interrupt my sleep.

But I second trying out all the different free sleep aid / ambience / ASMR / relaxation videos on youtube first. I sometimes even run some of the visual ones during the day, as they are very calming.
 

Charbella

MyPTSD Pro
Personally I have to have a fan going 365 and our winters can be brutal for cold. I like the constant of the noise.

However I had a friend stay with me for a few weeks who used a white noise machine, drove me NUTS. It wasn’t a gentle sound felt more like keening. I had to have her move it to the other side of the room so I couldn’t hear it as well.

I, like @Friday have above average hearing so noise really affects me. I also suck at sleeping. It’s a skill I never mastered so generally I don’t sleep much and wake often. If sleep is also hard for you I’d try anything. Seriously I haven’t made my bed in 1.5 years because I’m best sleeping at the foot of my bed with my feet hanging off and a blanket that is loose vs tucked in anywhere so I finally decided to just put the bottom sheet on and find a cuddly blanket. 🤷‍♀️ Works better than before.
 

Freddyt

MyPTSD Pro
I get PTSD tinnitus when I am up the Suds scale or working on heavy reprocessing tasks so white noise - not great it bugs me as a matter of fact.

Reducing noise with something like noise reducing headphones is even worse....full on freak out. Can't hear what I need to.....

I have all my video media on a server now so when I need to I can put on something I have watched a jillion times as background noise. It's almost like a fidget toy for my brain....

Otherwise - the fan style is good but has little volume adjustment.....and like @EveHarrington said the others usually run on a loop and my brain focuses on the pattern.....
 

Charbella

MyPTSD Pro
@Freddyt me too! I totally use Netflix series that I’ve watched before to fall asleep. I need something to have my attention enough that I can’t spiral but not so much I want to stay up to watch it.

I don’t know that it’s so much the noise though. I use to do books then I spent one too many nights finishing a book and getting zero sleep, not really conducive to functioning.
 

Feather

New Here
A friend has recommended that I use white noise to help me sleep. I tend not to sleep very well when my boyfriend is away at work; the stress sometimes triggers an event. I've listened to snippets of white noise and I'm not too sure it would work. I don't want something that might make episodes worse. She swears by it; it seems to work very well for her. Sidenote: she also suffers from PTSD. I am ambivalent about its use; if it works then I'm all for it. But I also don't want something that could make my PTSD worse either. I was wondering if anyone has used this technique besides my friend. I believe in getting as many opinions as possible before I make a purchase. I appreciate any and all who respond to my query. 🔊
I enjoy rain sounds. Ive found its the only sound I can tolerate without annoying me and actually soothes me. I turn it on my Alexa before I sleep. Also during really rough nights I take sleeping meds prescribed by my psychiatrist. I hope you find something that helps!
 
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