“Silence”, it is said, ‘speaks a thousand words’. It is also common knowledge that couples who can spend their time in silence (and still feel as if they have had the best conversation ever) will always stay together. However, to some people, silence can be downright scary. There is term for this phobia: Sedatephobia. The word originates from Greek ‘Sedate’ meaning ‘silent or sleeping or dead’ and Phobos meaning the Greek God of fear, or dread or aversion. The phobia was relatively unheard of 50 years ago. However, today, it is a fairly common phobia. Expert hypnotists and psychotherapists are seeing large numbers of Sedatephobic individuals in their offices and they believe that these numbers will continue to rise in the coming decades.
For Sedatephobic individuals, darkness might not be scary, but the silence and lack of noise can bring on a full blown panic attack. People suffering from Sedatephobia cannot withstand silence; they constantly need noise and human interaction. This constant neediness can be very harmful to the individual.
Causes of Sedatephobia
Like all other specific phobias, the fear of silence is usually caused by a traumatic or negative episode in the phobic’s life. Some phobics, for example might have been locked up or abused by an adult,(some having been kept in basements or closets for punishment where no outside sound reaches them). The feelings the child has experienced then can get permanently etched on his/her mind. News of a loved one’s death or other traumatic/negative episode associated with silence can also bring on this phobia.
Many experts believe that technology has also given rise to the constant need for sounds around humans. For some people, it is impossible to meditate or sit in a quiet room for even a few minutes as they always need their phone, music, TV, or the noise of traffic around them.
Do you recall the inability to keep quiet in the lower grades, when teachers would insist upon complete silence? Children especially cannot stay without making noise, since they are, by nature, noisy. They also have more energy; hence whispering is also not possible for them. Everything they do has to be loud and amplified. Adults often ask children to keep quiet who often face punishments when they don’t.
Silence is typically associated with the night, forests or other uninhabited areas having complete lack of civilization. To be left in silence can mean being “hunted down by supernatural beings or things that go bump into the night”. It also brings the fear of the unknown. Most sufferers of Sedatephobia also tend to have inherent anxieties. They may inherently be monophobes (the fear of being left alone). The fear of ghosts is also associated with this phobia. Other causes of the fear of silence phobia include adrenal insufficiencies, depression, hormonal imbalances, and delusional paranoia.
Symptoms of fear of silence
Excessive noise can be debilitating and can bring on headaches. However, it is silence that can cause various symptoms in a Sedatephobe. Power cuts can be especially trying to such people, since they are left without technology, noise, music or movies around to comfort them. When left in silence, the phobic might have a full blown panic attack which may be characterized by following symptoms:
- Shivering, shaking, trembling
- Having dry mouth and sweaty palms
- Inability to speak or express themselves: feeling detached from reality and having thoughts of death or dying
- Feeling numb, feeling like crying or fleeing
- Experiencing rapid heartbeat, nausea, gastrointestinal distress etc
Sometimes, a person with Sedatephobia can also feel afraid in a group when people stop talking or there is a lull in the conversation. Exam times can be especially hard for these individuals. Spending time in a library or even trying to sleep alone can be a scary time for the sufferers of fear of silence phobia.
Treating and overcoming the phobia
Family members can play an important role in helping an individual overcome his/her fear of silence. Talking about the fear to a loved one (or in group therapy) can provide relief to some extent. Else it is best to seek professional help from a hypnotherapist, or psychiatrist.
Today, many modern therapies like CBT (or cognitive behavior therapy), NLP or neurolingusitic programming and systematic desensitization therapies are known to help reduce anxiety experienced by the Sedatephobe. All these treatments can help one get to the root of the fear of silence phobia and help the sufferer overcome it once and for all.
The real question is, how do I get over it? For a short period, meditation helped. But now I don’t have time to do it, and my phobia is at its peak.
I’m 42 and a year ago escaped a violent and toxic 10-year relationship. Since then, I have found that silence at bedtime freaks me out now. The television on for background noise makes me anxious even at the lowest volume. I have now found that slightly having the flashlight on my phone on the bed in my line of sight helps. The light is on but shining into the pillow or the mattress, so just a little bit of light shining out helps me relax and drift off to sleep a lot easier. I never had issues like this before and would fall asleep as soon as my head hit the pillow, but now that’s away to pot. I was beaten while I was sleeping and face down, so this definitely has an effect on me, and I think the flashlight is a little bit of a security thing now over this fear of the darkness and the silence of nighttime.
Are there any quick ways to deal with this phobia? Like something you could do for a night without the help of devices. I can’t think of anything and I need ideas now. I’m going everywhere I can so if you have any ideas even if they seem dumb please tell me.
The only way to deal with it is to deal with the event that is attached to the cause of the phobia.
Lewis White says
Hi. Try going for an evening walk before going to bed. You might find that you sleep really well as a result of the gentle physical exercise and breathing in the fresh air. Try to go to bed at around 10:30 to 11:00 pm, not after Midnight, as the world gets more silent after Midnight. If you are like me and hate the silence of the indoors, open a small window in the bedroom if the weather is warm enough. Obviously, the window needs to be too small for a burglar to get in, or use a larger window with an opening restrictor for the same reason. The open window will connect you with the real, live world outside, which has many sounds. Never have a TV in the bedroom and turn off the internet. Any static electricity has a rest-destroying effect. My suggestion is to find an activity like swimming that will tire you out. You will then sleep well. Finally, make a real commitment to getting up, having some breakfast, then go out in the morning. Leave the house or flat to itself. Go out, talk, meet people if possible. In such ways, you should find that silence is oppressed. Birdsong is great, just open the door or window. Start to learn the guitar. I did, about four years back at age 62. Then, you can make music. PS Simon and Garfunkel’s “Sound of Silence” is actually quite a noisy song after the quiet bits. PPS I hate noise, but I love sound. There is a huge difference.
I just wanted to say something, but yeah, for me, the phobia happens when I’m home alone, and I start feeling very uncomfortable. I turn on the tv, and I put on music on other devices. It helps a bit but not a lot. Try reading; maybe that’s better. I hope you also get over your fear!
Matt F says
I have the phobia myself. I have no fear of the dark – I’d maintain fine as a blind person, I think more than if I were to become deaf. I’ve heard many people say that there are spirits or ghosts or other things unseen around us all the time. I wonder if that’s true and if we just have more of a sense of it in silence.
I put on my fan, music, or podcast. I prefer these to the tv because there’s no light with these. Only noise of some sort.
Now I know that I have a phobia. That might be the reason why I always picture myself being in an empty room with no doors or windows whenever I am in total silence.
The Best Kid In The House says
I feel that way a lot. I’m so glad so many people understand it.
It’s so strange how silence daunts me. Sometimes I would picture a frozen forest with a hanging fog where there was no sound of wind or birds. The image always brought tears to my eyes, feeling as though there was something or someone there. I even picture a downtown area of a city that has lost all of its population, completely empty, and imagine how silent it would be. With this picture, I can’t help but feel like something watches me from the windows. As a child, I hated sleeping alone; it didn’t matter if it was pitch black or if creepy music played, as long as I knew someone I trusted was there with me, I was fine. Even now, I find it hard to sleep without my partner beside me, especially if the fan is off. White noise comforts me as it does with many people, but I feel as though I cannot live without it even during the day.
Hey, I feel the same when I sleep at my grandparent’s home. But it doesn’t get better for me if someone is there or if there is still a bit of light outside. Because I sleep with two of my older cousins, in that case, mostly summer, I can’t sleep without covering myself with a blanket or something, and I always sleep with my back to the wall. It’s pretty scary, and I always think someone will quietly sneak in and kill me or kidnap me.
I picture the empty city too, and I sometimes imagine being locked in a big black space floating on a bed. It’s weird and scary. I hope your phobia leaves you alone.
It seems obvious to me that fear of silence is ONLY fear of death. But as far as I am concerned that makes it something to face head on, and not pathologize.
It is not only associated with death but also with mental disorders. A lot of the time it is PTSD, that’s the reason I have it. If I have no noise to focus on then I think about things that terrify me and I’m 32. When I was younger my dad was murdered and now when I am in a quiet place I think about how it happened. The types of phobias are very dangerous. Trust me.
Oh my gosh, I’m so sorry for your dad. I’m 12, and I think I have mild anxiety and sedatephobia. For me, it’s very scary staying home alone, especially in the evenings. Sometimes I can’t sleep because it’s too quiet. I hope your fear leaves you alone.
I’ve just recently turned 15 and silence scares me so much. It’s so loud like my head is booming. Sometimes it’s ringing and static, other times I hear my own heartbeat or I can hear the blood pumping through my neck. When the tv goes off I’ll experience that same loud booming noise (sometimes with auditory or visual hallucinations). It instills a fear I didn’t know I had.
I think that’s another fear or a very bad case of sedatephobia. I’m 12, and I have sedatephobia. I have totally different symptoms. I have only one in common with you: hearing my heartbeat. For me, silence is the worst. I become so anxious. I have trouble sleeping on the 1st floor, especially near the window. I always sleep with my back near the wall and am covered with my blanket, even in summer.
When I was younger, whenever it was dark and silent, I would start to hear this sound. It was like the ringing in your ears combined with radio static. And it was either so extremely loud my mind would start to drown in it, or so ridiculously quiet that my mind would still drown just because it was so quiet it was almost silent, but still filled my ears up to the brim. It terrified me to no end, and it came almost every night for a really long time. I would try to escape by running to the bathroom and turning on the light, but it never got any better. So I would just wait for it to leave. It could take from two minutes to two hours. But it wasn’t just my hearing – I would have nightmares, too. Nightmares where there was just a staircase and a large glass of milk. And I was either ginormous compared to them, or the size of a molecule. Both were terrifying for the same reasons the sounds were. When I woke up, panicked, I realized it had the ability to mess with my mind, too, because it convinced my eyes that I was minuscule or giant by making everything look extremely far away or extremely close. I lived every night in fear. I started to become terrified of silence. The sound typically came at night while I was trying to sleep, but it could come during the day too. I didn’t understand the fear, though, so I didn’t do much about it. Then it started to get worse. It’s ability to mess with me only grew. Twice in the course of a year I ran into the bathroom in the hopes that it would get better (even though I knew it wouldn’t), and the sound did dissipate after a while, but I was suddenly 100% convinced of a specific danger right outside the door. One time it was a giant skull with bone legs, going to race at me the moment I stepped outside. I cried for hours until my mother came and calmed me down enough to let her come inside, and then enough to go out myself. The other time I was convinced that I was the last Greek in the world, and the Romans were coming to kill me just as they’d killed all my people. I could even hear them banging on the door. I knew they’d break it down soon. Eventually, I opened the door myself, accepting my fate. On the other side, there was no one. Gradually, these things started to happen less, and now they come rarely. When they do, I can push them away with relative ease. But I’m still terrified of silence, near silence, extremely loud noises, extremely large things, and my own mind. I’m glad I have something to call it now, and people to relate to. Has anyone experienced something similar to this? I’ve never even heard of anyone going through anything even close.
Constantly, my hole life. I’m 32 years old and if the tv goes off in the middle of the night I will have such awful nightmares it wakes me up. Fear of giant fish. I love them yet they horrify me. My nightmares are so bizarre it has led to a fear of the supernatural. I have dreamed of a long goodbye with a friend who died two days later. It’s left me paralyzed in fear of my dreams. When there is not light or noise I swear I see twisted faces and shapes when I close my eyes. And I always say that silence is loud. My thoughts get so out of control I think I hear things. I cannot sleep without the tv on. I need the sound and light or else I have a panic attack.
I have nightmares that I’m in a room, and giant vegetables just come in. I always hide under the little table next to the sofa or the other ones. When I’m in my bed and I wake up (just in the dream), everything around is black with strange colored shapes flying around. Everyone thinks it’s silly, but I don’t. It’s very scary. Btw, I’m 12.
I have this, it’s nice to have a name for it and to see I am not alone. I didn’t notice I had this till I was older and it’s gotten worse the older I’ve got. I am a 31 yr old female. I have always had to sleep with music or TV, the few times I have tried not to I have nightmares. I had a traumatic childhood and was sexually abused multiple times throughout but I am not sure where this fear comes from. Just another thing I need to work on to have some sense of a normal life. *sighs*
This is me! I don’t know why either.
I’m 14 and last year I went through a major depressing phase where I experienced depressed/suicidal thoughts. I would occasionally cry and try to force them away being ineffective until I fell asleep. I learnt of an easier way to stop the thoughts – music. It courts my attention and I slowly recovered. I can now be left in silence but still play some tunes as I dose off too afraid of the thoughts coming back, especially when stressed. The main cause of my depression in the first place. Not sure if this is what you would call Sedatephobia.
Well I’m 15 years old and I always felt alone and scared of being alone, then I realized that I can’t stay without noise.
At first I didn’t notice the changes but I always watched something in TV and on the phone with full volume.
But one day I realized that I was getting scared of my thoughts and thinking about death. My head was blowing and I couldn’t stop it. After a few minutes I played music and started to relax.
From all of this suffering I realized that I had sedatephobia.
It was horrible. I couldn’t study, concentrate in my classes or anything else.
After all that I found that “milk” relaxed me.
It’s weird, when I am alone, with no one around or no noise, I start talking to myself loudly to make some noise.
I never knew this fear existed, but it makes me feel good that other people have it too and understand me.
I wish you all easy treatments.
YES, this is how I am feeling. I’m 13 and my parents take away my phone at night. I am so worked up because I don’t have my headphones in. I need them. I need my mom to come pick me up.
My son uses a fan to create some background noise, this allows him to relax enough to sleep. Ask your parents if you can do this instead of the phone. He has the fan on high as this is the noisiest setting.
I’m 15 too. I feel the same way you do all the time. I hope you find a good way to cope.
Thanks, and milk calms me too. For sleeping problems connected to the phobia, I think it helps to sleep with your back next to the wall and a sound of a fan or something. I’m 12.
I am 13 and when I am in silence I get anxiety and panic attacks. Then there are the goosebumps and sweat. I also shake even though I’m not cold. I found that if it’s not loud enough, I also get these symptoms (it doesn’t have to be completely silent). I have a more severe case. It is to the point that I have to shimmy around or just do anything to make noise so that I can breathe. No one understood me and they thought I was an alien, which made me think I was the only one like this. But I’m not and this makes me feel better and I did not know that it was not that uncommon with kids my age.
Yeah same, I’m 12, and my parents don’t understand my feeling. I’m happy you got better! And I realized too that most of us are 11-15 yrs old.
Since I was little I hated silence with all my soul. When I was about six years old, my cousin left me for hours in my dad’s studio as a joke and there was no noise at all. I tried to make some sound but the place was conditioned so that the noise could not enter (since it was a recording studio). Since then I was trying to find a solution and now I try to convince myself that my thoughts have sound. Which is useful to me but I cannot sustain it enough. It makes me stressful when I have an exam and try to find the sound of pencils and sheets.
This is so relatable and this whole time I thought I was the only one.
So, when I was little I was always talking, my family chalked it off as I was just a very chatty child, but that wasn’t the case. When I turned six I realized something – I didn’t like silence. I would have panic and anxiety attacks, I would sweat and get chills and I would also get very antsy. After telling my family, we had to be careful of where we would go to eat or just anywhere for that matter, since I would get very scared.
I thought I was the only one. I’m 13.
I had the same experience. Waiting for someone by myself in the studio was like torture. There was no beating of drums, strumming of a guitar, and singing at that time. I felt I was on an isolated island. I started to panic, and the first thing that came to my mind was to walk away hurriedly from the studio. It was just a matter of minutes when my significant other got in. I was a totally different person telling him that I wanted to leave the room asap. He was surprised and asked me what was going on. I just couldn’t tell him that my fear of silence attacked again when he left me by myself in the studio.
I hear a thumping like the vibration big speakers make at a concert. It’s deafening and makes me nauseous.
I had a traumatic experience. I was young and I was home alone with my dad and he left, he put the tv on and gave me my iPad (no internet on the pad and it was night so no way to contact people). The tv froze and when I waited for it to fix itself there was silence. I got anxious and felt someone was watching me. I felt like I was dying but the tv started working and everything was fine. I’m older now and I don’t feel safe in that house anymore and despite liking my lonesomeness I get nervous and often play videos and music on full volume and talk to people digitally. I still feel someone is watching in the silence unless someone is with me.
Is there any chance anyone else here actually hears silence? Whenever I’m in complete silence, I hear a deafening static. Whenever my music is just a tiny bit too quiet, I can hear it almost trying to pry its way into my ears like some kind of parasite. Anyone else?
Jenifer Harland says
YES when it’s too quiet I hear footsteps in my ear. I can’t stand it and also I’ll hear static too. Sometimes my brain will just make up noises.
Exactly! It honestly makes me want to die, I have my fan on EVERY minute of every day.
christopher lee says
I have a similar sound but not static, it’s like a broom being swept but it gets louder and it feels like it’s getting closer to me when I’m in pure silence. I’ve suffered from this all my life and therapy psychotherapist doctors haven’t done nothing for me. I just sort of learn to cope with it but you’re not alone. I have other weird experiences too but too much to detail here.
Oh my god yes i get that all the time
Whenever it’s pure silence, when nothing is making a sound, I feel like I’m being watched and slightly less than deafening ringing or screeching plays in my ears. By complete silence I mean no fish tank filter noise, no fan, no tv, no dog, no nothing. It scares me worse than death.
I forgot to say that I’m in 10th grade in the U.S.A. and that I had this traumatic dream where I went to the New Berlin library. Everything went dark and silent, two pitch black figures walk out of it. They stop at the end of the sidewalk and start screeching louder and louder until my ears, nostrils, eyes, and mouth start gushing blood till I die. What causes that, because I’ve gotten that dream every year from age 5 to 13.
Vivian Belman says
Hi! I’m a girl in 9th grade. I’ve had one thing that really caused this problem, my step mother put her hands around my throat and threatened to choke me if I didn’t speak. I was frozen with fear so of course I didn’t. She hit me repeatedly and called me horrible things while I sat in silence. Since then I’ve found myself having a panic attack if there isn’t something making noise. Email me: vivianb1013 @ gmail.com
omg I can relate
This also happens to me too!
Dylan Reid says
Well, complete silence seriously bothers me, but its not something i often encounter. This mentions that in schools teachers often want silence, but theres always that rustle of paper or maybe a fan or anything like that. (I’m currently at high school gr9, i dont know what exactly you people from around would call that)
And night isnt a problem for me either, because no matter whether its hot or cold i sleep with a fan on.
However lately because of all the sudden load Shedding weve been having in South Africa, I am currently facing this issue; literally half an hour before i wrote this comment was a session for 2.5 Hours and it kept me awake because of the silence. I listened to music on my phone, but it was too distracting to sleep.
So thats the only time when its a real issue.
Hi I’m 13 of age and I’ve been dealing with this as well, I guess it started when I was the age of 4 which is the time I’ve been exposed to violence throughout that time till today. Around February 23, we were practicing poems for this poetry thing and it was my turn to go. When I went up to the board I heard a small humming sound and my heart started racing my breathing got heavier, but I couldn’t leave the class so I asked my teacher if I could read it off the paper she allowed me to do so and I clicked a pen in my pocket to make small noise and it began to help a little. Today I searched up why I get scared of being exposed to long silence and I ended up here, and turns out I may suffer from this phobia. Silence still scares me, like a lot and I have small panic attacks from it and I’ve lost a lot of sleep. So I’ll try to overcome it and if I can’t ill just make noise whenever I go
Do you ever hum? I don’t know if that helps you, but it helps me sometimes. Sometimes if I’m alone and it’s too quiet I’ll just think out loud or sing something. But I don’t know, I’m more afraid of being alone than I am of quiet, although I don’t like silence very much, unless the loud noises are too chaotic. Then I need it to be quiet.
I hum and sing to myself. If I’m alone, I just talk to myself in a somewhat loud voice. I also play music that I enjoy from my phone at a loud volume. I don’t know about you, but this really helps me!
I hum, and it helps. If you need to relax, put up some study or relax music and drink a bit of milk (if not allergic or intolerant of course.) I’m 12, and I have sedatephobia. It’s really scary. I have weird nightmares that others think are silly, and I found out the nightmares and phobia are related. Good luck everyone!
I’ve been suffering from this condition for about 8 years, 6 of them i was studying. It was really hard because the only way i got to deal with it was to take a lot of anxiolytic pills and skip classes, which made my grades go down a lot. Now that i’m working, i have some meeting and i always fell like running away. Sometimes i can’t even listen to what is being said to me.
I don’t think my problem is childhood trauma related. It just started like this: my belly made a noise and i got ashamed for some reason and the problem just grew without control. I can’t even remember how my life was before this. For sure my belly had made sounds before. Why can’t I remeber if it made me feel bad or not?
I don’t know if one day I will get cured or at least a little bit more confortable with it
I have exactly the same problem, even now in my adult life. It started at school being in a silent classroom, my belly made a funny noise and then all through high school I couldn’t stay in a silent room. Even to this day in my work life, the fear of going on training and having to sit in a room where it will be slightly quiet kills me, all because of the noise my belly makes occasionally!
I realized something was wrong with me starting in high school. Every time we had to take a test my palms would sweat and I would feel so sick so I’d ask to go to the bathroom and I didn’t even have to go I’d just take a brief walk through the halls and circle back. When I’d come back I would just rush through all my tests no matter how good or bad I am at the subject and then I’d ask to go to the nurse. I went so much through my time at this school. The nurse knew me and my dad and my grandma because sometimes I would just go home saying my stomach hurt. It wasn’t till senior year I was battling depression and my psych evaluation was I had testing anxiety, ptsd, depression, the works, and testing was easier because I’d go to the office and take the tests. When I graduated and I took a yr off school I had met a guy and we went to a vet to take his dog in for shots and we were in a quiet room. And it happened all the symptoms and I was just so nervous and scared even when the doctor came in and was talking it was still not enough noise happening around me and I just couldn’t wait to leave. Still don’t know how I’m gonna go back to school with my issue but hopefully I can overcome.
Same kinda. Every day in class when it gets dead silent I get very nervous and my stomach starts to growl and I just want to leave. Sometimes it can be silent but the teacher is talking and I’m still nervous. Idk what it is because it hasn’t always been like this for me, it started my first year in high school.
Lesly R. says
This exact same thing happened to me! It is so frustrating because it has pushed me back from what I would love to do – be in school. I had to continue my education online, and it has made me very upset because I enjoy interacting with others, but I cannot stand being in a silent classroom/room full of people. I recommend to start relaxation techniques whenever you can, and maybe go to a GI and see if they can help. In my situation, I developed stomach issues which made my anxiety worse. I am trying to start from zero, and make my digestive system accommodate. I know I have to push myself to overcome this, and I hope that all of you do too!
The same exact thing happened to me! One day in class my stomach made a noise and after that I tried avoiding quiet rooms. But before that incident quiet rooms never bothered me.
Same for me too, do you guys have any tricks to calm yourself down when in those situations?
So, I’m fourteen years old, I’ve had a fairly stress-free life. I’ve never had to worry about anything really. Until about 11 months ago, My cousin (13) was diagnosed with Cancer this didn’t effect my life greatly except I would sometimes become upset that’s all really. In February of this year, My cousin was starting to recover he had finished his chemo and he was slowly getting better, He still had to live in the hospital. I was obviously happy, so when i returned to school, I spread the news and everyone was happy and excited for him to come home. I remember we had assembly that morning, as soon as I sat down in the seat, I felt my stomach churn and making weird noises almost as if I was hungry, I just shrugged it off, The assembly started and everyone was quiet listening to the teacher, I felt my breathing go funny, and I started shaking I shuffled across to the seat next to me and tapped on a teachers shoulder. I remember asking if i could go to give in a letter or something stupid like that, I said it was super important and was supposed to be in a couple weeks ago, they said yes so i quickly stood but as i was walking out my legs felt like jelly, I felt like everyone was staring at me. As soon as I got out of the hall, My breathing was back to normal and I had stopped shaking. I was so scared I thought something was wrong with me, I dragged out the time it took for me to walk back to my classroom find the letter and hand it into the office. I checked my phone we had about 10 minutes of assembly left. I walked back in through the side entrance and to cause less of a disturbance, one of the teachers told me to sit on the floor near the exit, I felt completely fine. But I feared going back into any of my lessons so I felt “sick” which meant I didn’t have to go into any of my lessons that day.
The next day, I felt slightly better, I was scared to come into school though because I didn’t want to have the feeling I had yesterday. I went to form tutor and as soon as I saw the classroom with everyone sat down my stomach fell, I started to feel how I did yesterday. I decided to just ignore this feeling and carry on with the day, when I was in lessons like Phys Ed or Dance I felt fine: because it was loud in there. Some lessons like geography and English became unbearable so I visited the school nurse, who redirected me to nurse who works for the NHS. The NHS nurse would come in and visit me once a week and I’d tell her how I had been etc. This helped majorly, I didn’t have to go into assembly and if I wanted to leave the class all I had to do was ask to go to the toilet because all of my teachers were told about what I had been experiencing.
I’m on Summer Break at the moment but I’m not getting any sleep at all, when I try to go to sleep my mind is telling me about the classes next year, what if they are quiet? The mock GCSEs are definitely going to be quiet.
If anyone has any concerns or worries about their exams, you can do what I did and visit your GP to receive a doctors note stating that you can sit wherever you feel comfortable, whether that is in the nurse’s room or a different room entirely. I chose to sit at the back of the hall, so my friends wouldn’t complain that it was unfair because that just makes it worse.
Alyssa Patterson says
Wow I know how you feel for me it was way more embarrassing because every time it gets quiet I panic and start to have hallucinations and can’t breath. One time it happened during a pep rally because the principal said to be silent and I started to panic as soon as all the noise stopped. Mail me if you want professional advice because I visit special counselors who give me advice like for example always carry a note that explains you have Sedatephobia and carry a pair of headphones with a device that let’s you play music like phones, tablets etc.
I was listening to music at my friend’s house whilst everyone was sleeping, it was completely silent apart from my music. My mobile data ran out at that very moment and I started panicking. My lips were dry and my hands began sweating. After a few seconds of that suffocating silence, my breathing began to quicken which woke up my friend who was sleeping with her head on me. She let me connect to her mobile data.
I think I have this because I can’t go one minute without some sort of sound-any sound, really
I have a mild case of sedatephobia. When it’s silent I find it hard to breath, and become a little paranoid. I watch YouTube to hear some voices and sound in an otherwise silent room, though turning it off to go to sleep causes the silence to appear very suddenly, and eventually I will turn it back on, just to hear some sound. I usually get caught up in this cycle, so I don’t get very much sleep (Sorry, not exactly on the topic) and I think that amplifies my reaction to silence somewhat. This article was very informative, well written and interesting.
Same thing with me
I do the same thing. I just keep my earphones plugged into the device I will be using most that day. But when my data runs out or the electric goes off, I grab the end of my earphones and hit the side of my bed or the closest thing.
Last night my wifi kept turning my music off so I was really panicking that night.
Yeah, when it’s silent I turn on some music and write part of one of my stories or something along those lines.
It seems a lot of people suffer from this. I have to sleep with the radio on. I hate the sudden noises,especially with the colder weather coming in and things start expand and contract making sharp creaking and cracking noises. Also sometimes during the day if I’m alone and nothing is going on in my house, I’ll be okay with the quiet for awhile, then I start to get anxious and either turn TV or music on.
Me too. I always have to listen to music before I go to sleep and also I like to hear the TV as well. My mom can’t sleep at night. In classrooms as well if it’s quiet I get myself so worked up. I guess it’s because there’s loads of people not making a sound and it scares me. Then my stomach makes this weird noise and it’s embarrassing and seems to make it a lot worse
Same here, when I’m home alone and I’m reading or something and it’s totally quiet I’ll have hallucinations of people breaking in and I hate sudden noises. I always have a radio on and if I wake up in the middle of the night I have to either watch TV or YouTube or something to take my mind off it. I have my music downloaded on my phone so that I don’t need data for it and I always have my headphones with me. If I don’t have those options I’ll make my own noise or excuse myself from the room and walk around to clear my mind. I also have the weird stomach noises when I’m getting amped up.
I have sedatephobia. I really struggle sitting in silence, especially in classrooms and exams (I’m 17). It’s been the same for at least 2 years, which made my GCSE’s difficult. I have to be listening to music or have the tv on at all times, which is obviously something I cannot do in class. It’s so hard to cope with and even harder to explain to others, which is why finding this article was so helpful in almost giving me a diagnosis, and making me feel less alone, and strange. My stomach rumbles incredibly when I am in silence, which furthers my anxiety of people hearing it and making fun of me, and I don’t know what to do! It’s making me not want to go to school!
Same here! I have small panic attacks before tests in case my belly rumbles…and it almost always does.
That’s exactly why I left college nobody believed me. I never went to geography because that was too quiet and I was alone in there, as in no friends took geography, they kept making me go but I skipped it. In the end they gave up. One of my nice teachers when I told her about it actually helped instead of being in a huge quiet space with like 100 other people I got be In a big room but spaced out and there were about 5 people in there it really helped
Lekshmi Priya says
I too suffer from sedatephobia. I didn’t know it was a real thing. I thought it was just me, cause I’ve never met anyone else having trouble sitting in silence. School and exams are the worst place to experience when you have it. When i told my mother she didn’t believe at first, then I showed her this website. I need help. I’m really worried, it’s standing in my path. I think I was 13 when I first noticed how much I got irritated in silence with other people around. Now I’m 18. I somehow survived all these years of school and exams. There were some really bad experiences too. Thinking about new places I have to go like colleges, homes, it freaks me out. I just want it to stop. It’s out of my control these days.
Lekshmi Priya says
Plus I’ve also suffered from depression. I read that depression is one reason for sedatephobia.
zoe walsh says
Hello I always feel like something is out to get me. When I’m sitting in silence I feel like something is gonna just pop out. Whenever I wake up I have to turn on my tv, turn on a flashlight and make sure someone is awake before I even get out of bed because I feel like something is going to attack me
So I’m 15 and I don’t think I have this fear too badly, but what I really can’t deal with is if there has been noise, and then there’s a sudden silence or a sudden single noise – for example, if there is a technical difficulty on the TV and there’s a sudden high pitched beep; or if a programme has ended and there’s just silence. I think this was brought on when I was very little. I remember one thing I was extremely scared of was Ceebeebies or whatever it’s called. Basically, at the very end of the programme, they’d do a goodnight song in twinkling music, and then as the programme ended, it would just be silence. After a while, I would get scared at the music, knowing what was coming up, and then scramble for the TV remote to change the channel before it got to the silence. I don’t even know why I’m scared of it?? Another thing is phone calls – and I mean the scary voice that would (and still does) make my heart race when it says:
“The number you called has not been recognised. Please check, and try again.”
And then it would loop. Yeah, that wasn’t a good experience for little me.
I think any technical difficulty just freaks me out – including a dream (nightmare) I had once where I was playing my DS, and one of my games decided to go all weird and scary on me.
OOOH, another thing – I remember there was this rage about this hacker on movie star planet called ‘anonymous’. I used to FREAK myself out, thinking that they were out to get me, in the darkness of my bedroom.
Okay, I’ve done enough talking, but I just kind of hope I’m not the only one…?
I am the same way. I can sometimes sit in silence but not for very long because i am afraid another noise will come up and it scares me. I have a fear of silence and loud noises at the same time and i have a fear of the future so its a very difficult time for me. What i am trying to say is that you are not alone and i have the same problem.
i am suffering from sedatephobe
please find a solution
mah ree says
Pray to God.
I need help i’m afraid of silence darkness and being alone i think i might know why anyways when i was little about 6-7 my uncle had a room in his house that had no electricity and he always told me never to go in there or a monster with big teeth would eat me (i was a little kid so i believed in such things then) anyways one day my cousin (we were playing hide and seek tag and i ran in there btw my uncle wasn’t home and the babysitter left us) shut the door while i was in there and i couldn’t get the door to open and when i screamed and told him to let me out he ignored me and eventually fell asleep on the couch in the living room on the other side of the house watching cartoons soon after about 30 minutes in there it started to get dark outside and i started crying and i closed my eyes trying to imagine being home with my mother anyways when i finally opened them it was pitch black and i cried loudly as soon as i did the closet door opened a little because of the wind and i instantly got quiet in fear and cried quietly hoping that i wouldn’t get mauled to death or something by the “monster” i had a panic attack because i heard something move in the closet and i started hearing voices in my head i started screaming and hitting the walls while kicking against the door trying to break it open i had another panic attack and ended up also having an asthma attack (i had my emergency inhaler so i was fine) i passed out soon after and woke up screaming after waking up in the dark room my uncle finally coming home and letting me out 5 hours and 37 minutes after my cousin had locked me in there anyways i’m 16 now and i still hear voices when it’s extremely quiet but only if i’m alone i hate being alone and i’m afraid of the dark often giving me panic attacks when the power goes out because i have nobody in my family that’s willing to try and help me due to me being very distant what should i do i don’t want to be like this forever i can’t sleep without a tv on in the background and i can’t sleep in the dark alone either i also can’t sit alone in silence because i start to hear things that aren’t there what should i do?
Ugh My name is Darrian the m was a typo
Find some friends to help. I don’t like going up to other people alone (mainly teachers and strangers) , so mine always go with me. However, they don’t know that I have sedatephobia. In fact, I hadn’t realized until last night, but I plan on telling my therapist. Surround yourself with people who are willing to support and help you. Even if you can’t get over your fear of silence, work on something like your fear of the dark. I hadn’t realized that I had sedatephobia until now because my mind always plays music in my head. It made me even fail an algebra exam because I was trying to remember how the song’s opening went. I didn’t finish the test because I kept thinking about that one song. If my mind is playing it, I can’t do anything else. If my phone plays it I can because I’m not struggling. Algebra is one of my favorite and best subjects. I all ways have that happening to me, so I didn’t know I had sedatephobia. It made me think of a world without music, which is my worst nightmare. I assume I got sedatephobia when I broke my face at age 8, which is a long story that I don’t want to get into, but the car ride to the emergency room was absolutely silent. Some people may treat you like this isn’t a problem and that you need to get over yourself, but it is. Even if you can’t get any family members or friends to help you out, then it’s time to find a therapist. I suggest group therapy because it would provide you with more than just one person having your back, plus it’s cheaper.
I definitely have sedatephobia I’m 13.
When I was younger I had a horrible dream where there were noises only I could hear and only people I could see. In the dream I was screaming at my mum and she would just look confused, the ‘people’ would be hiding in all different places in the house etc so that turned into an OCD for me bc I had to check everywhere in the house before I sleep, my mum would stop me from doing it and said if I don’t I will have to see a doctor. I managed to stop after like 4-5 months.
Now I’m completely terrified of silence and if it is silent while I’m trying to sleep or home alone I will shake and have panic attacks, plus crying. Is the dream I had a separate phobia I really want to know so if you could help me that’s great.
I had this really bad nightmare that really shook me up when I was little, it was repetitive and sometimes I still have it now. I’m in this dark area, sometimes I’m in my house and I can’t see hardly anything. Then out of nowhere a voice whispers things like ”your parents are dead and its all your fault”. Or something about how I did this terrible thing or something and it really freaks me out. Sometimes I can even hear the voice in daylight and it’s pretty scary for me.
Hui Li says
Can you help me? I don’t know if I’m just too frightened of ghosts or I truly have sedatephobia..
I have no traumatic experience but I’m scared of supernatural stuff, especially ghosts. I used to think that I was scared of closed rooms only, but when I tried leaving the connecting door to my parents bedroom open, it didn’t help at all.. In fact a silenced room with a door partially open or wide open just frightened me even more than usual.
I tried sleeping in the same room with my parents, but if they had fallen asleep before me I spent the whole time trying to calm myself down and couldn’t sleep.
It seems that I don’t need human interaction a lot, oh and having someone sleeping next to me makes it worse. If they move about in their sleep I will be frightened over the slight sound.
I just need music to calm me down. As for TV, that was even worse.. It gave an impression that someone could be talking to me and there are times when I though the people in the TV were looking at me.. If I were to sleep in a room, I must not have any TV in the room, even my laptop screen must be faced downward. I can accept sound that is not from things with a screen, like maybe from a radio or MP3.. I do prefer dark rooms, but both bright and dark rooms must have music playing in order to let me sleep.
I told my parents about this but they said that I watched too many horror movies or that I’m letting my imagination run too freely. I didn’t watch horror shows at all as I’m too scared of them, but the silence does get me a little too unsteady..
Am I just too conscious over the fear of ghosts, or is the silence affecting me this badly?
I feel the same way. Honestly. I’m not a huge fan— I’m not a fan at all of horror. But I have a great imagination.
I also have a problem with falling asleep before everyone else as well. Music can help me. But the dark scares me as well. So, when I fall asleep after everyone I normally fall asleep with the light on.
Otherwise, back to the silence part… I’m the same way, but, if I can hear sounds, unfamiliar to me, I’ll freak out. And my imagination will run wild. Which is why I have a fan in my room. I keep it on low because the high level is too much. But the fan does help I’ve found I can’t sleep without it. If I don’t feel safe or don’t have that fan. I’m bound to wake up a few times.
So, we are in the same boat. I don’t watch horror but I love those show’s like Castle, Psych, crime scene ones. Basically. I’m a hobby writer. I make up ideas. So I come up with a lot of solutions to noises, if I’m scared, I come up with more scary ones. Really bad. I know. I’m up right now. Yeah…
But back to your question I think it’s about your imagination and the silence. And with your parents they’re not wrong scary thoughts can come from horror, BUT they can come from many other things. Like… I tend to remember things I don’t want to when I don’t want to. Like bloody Mary. Never should have seen it. I forget it. Till I’m scared. Yeah. So thoughts and fears can come from the deaths of your mind. Anywhere really. It’s probably mainly the imagination, in my opinion.
To help you, I’d try a fan, try other ways of sleeping. Like I fall asleep towards the door I feel safer(I leave it open), get a light if need be, sometimes I read before bed to get my mind on to something so it doesn’t wonder.
Things like that. Keep doing it till you find the best way.
Let me know how it turns out, if I helped you at all probably not. But. Hope so.
Hailey lambert says
I have sedatephobia. Once up in the country I realized i have this because they don’t have tv’s or noises like radios or phones in the bedrooms so when i tried to sleep, I had a full-blown panic attack. After crying for 20 minutes, I went searching the house to charge my dead phone. I finally did but it was the scariest moment of my life.
Hey, Jacob! I would like to use this page as a source for my research paper on how silence effects our well-being, but I need your last name, the date you published this, ect.
Could you email me your information please? Thank you so much!
Thanks for your interest. Check your email.
Autumn Book says
I am writing a thesis paper on Sedatephobia and would love to use your article. I need your name and other things to site it correctly and give you credit where credit is well deserved!
I have just sent you an email.
Jim M. says
I haven’t been able to sleep without some sound whether it be a TV on or music or a sound machine for a long time, don’t know what caused it. I prefer TV because I don’t feel alone if someone is talking and things are going on. Also if it’s too quiet I hear little noises outside and my anxiety level increases and am overcome with a sensation of wariness.
thats EXACTLY HOW I FEEL as a matter of fact i have a tv going RIGHT NOW! but every time silence happens i panic and sometimes.. even hallucinate (ex: a slender thing? it was dark grey/black too.) also anyone hear pecking/tapping/cracking noises coming from walls or doors?
Maddiedamosha :3 says
I also hear noises but I also get hot/cold flashes when it’s really silent so I have to listen to music or paint for most of the day to calm down because I get really worried
I am the same, no traumatic situations in my childhood that I can think of. But I find it really hard to sleep if I can’t hear anything at all. It’s also difficult to be in my house on my own during the day. I have to have music or the t.v on. And I always feel safer outside.
I always feel like something is staring at my back I usually have to press my back against a wall or lay down
I have sedatephobia and can’t even fall asleep without music, I have suffered no traumatic events and can’t think of anything that could have triggered this fear.
I am the same I am scared of complete silence. I have only told very few people and I have no idea how to get over this or even talk about it to someone. I have not even told my mom.
Just a Dude says
I have sedatephobia. My tv is always on and it’s so hard to sleep. I can’t get over the phobia. I feel I’m stuck with it.
I think I really do have Sedate-phobia.