A question liked to sensory challenges

If an autistic individual struggles with one of their senses being ‘overly’ sensitive, is it reasonable/common to have another sense be ‘under’ sensitive?

For example, I am very sensitive to noise- to a painful level. This is something, by reading on here, that I know a lot of us struggle with. I also know that others recognise sensitivities in their other senses. I would argue that my sense of smell is pretty sensitive, as is my sense of taste. My vision not so much. I can spot tiny details, but often miss larger things right in front of me. But the sense I really find lacking is that of my ability to detect when I’m cold or have hurt myself. My pain threshold is pretty high as a result. I detest being hot and I also don’t like being touched, except with warning from a select few people, but I really struggle to pick up on when I’ve hurt myself. A few months ago I walked in from a satisfying time in the garage of cleaning, organising and finishing a project, went to talk to my wife who immediately asked what I’d done. She looked a bit concerned, but I didn’t really know what she was worried about until she’d told me. I had a really deep cut on my leg and was bleeding to a reasonable level. I just didn’t feel it or recognise that I’d done it. It wasn’t anything bad, just required a bit of looking after it and now have an oddly shaped scar. But this sort of thing happens quite a lot to me. 

It might not be a thing, but it was a question I’ve been wondering about. It would be great to hear your thoughts/ experiences. Perhaps it’s just something linked to me, but equally, I’d be interested to see if other people have comparable instances or to see if it is something linked to autism or not.

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  • myself, i think my pain threshold is fairly low, i believe i am dyspraxic though, and THINK that could be linked to that.

    im also a drama king though, so tend to over react to things that didnt even hurt lol, just impulsively blurt out an "OWWWW!" at anything haha.

    i suppose pain is still a sense though, seeing how its linked to nerves, like other senses seem to be, so you could be on to something there 

  • Ah I see. It’s very interesting to read how our pain related experiences are different. Also about your impulsive exclamations of pain. When I was younger, I used to ask people to repeat everything as if I hadn’t heard them after every time they spoke. I had heard them, it was just reactionary. Or perhaps it was a processing time thing. It seemed pretty impulsive too. I don’t do it anymore, but it must have been frustrating for others at times!

  • i still do that, i kind of hear bits and pieces, at one point i thought it could be hearing trouble, but from learning about autism, it seems very likely to be processing problems.

    some things go in, some things dont, and im left with a puzzle to piece together unless i ask someone to repeat themselves, it drives me mad let alone anybody else lol.

  • A lot of verbal communication feels like a puzzle at times! I know all the pieces are there, but can I put them in the right order? Every now and then if I’m lucky!

    It’s funny, before your reply, I’d completely forgot about doing that. I think I ended up masking it, like many other aspects of my life, in order to suit others. Yet another point to reflect on and another clue from my early life that points to my adult diagnosis.

    I think for me, if somebody triggers a thought process in something they are saying, even mid sentence, I’m off on a tangent of thoughts. This makes conversations tricky, as I’m trying to multitask at something I’m not so great at (conversation) with something I’d rather be doing (thinking). 

  • My working solution is to talk them to the death, never allow them to interject anything LOL

  • Haha! I’ve done that a few times when somebody makes the mistake of starting a conversation about some of my specific interests. Good luck joining in!

  • I had a good practise in childhood back at home with my three younger sisters

    it was either listen to their highpitched neverending chitchat or learn how to talk so they stop and listen. But I could only do it with them until I was 16

  • If I don't get every word off someone, or hear every word spoken on the telly, it's hard.  I need to know everything of what was said.  It's like my brain can't cope with that gap in information and just get the general picture like my partner is able to do.

  • I'm like that. If I'm watching a drama I record it first and then keep rewinding and replaying conversations, until I understand what was said.

    I have the subtitles on too, even though there's nothing wrong with my hearing. Seeing the words on screen seems easier for my brain to process.

    Unfortunately in real life I haven't yet come across a person with a rewind button! You can only really ask someone to repeat something once.

    I think that's why I find phone calls so difficult.

Reply
  • I'm like that. If I'm watching a drama I record it first and then keep rewinding and replaying conversations, until I understand what was said.

    I have the subtitles on too, even though there's nothing wrong with my hearing. Seeing the words on screen seems easier for my brain to process.

    Unfortunately in real life I haven't yet come across a person with a rewind button! You can only really ask someone to repeat something once.

    I think that's why I find phone calls so difficult.

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