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16 mo terrified of noise

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#1 BeachedAsBro

Posted 04 November 2012 - 09:15 AM

Any tips? My 16mo is terrified of noises. Example- the garbage truck, lawn mowers, a loud car. She's always hated the hair dryer, the mix master, blender and vacuum cleaner. I keep exposing her to the noises and trying to make her feel as though they're normal, but she's terrified and it just makes her anxious for the rest of the day. I've also tried ignoring her and refusing to pick her up (as maybe she's reacting to my reaction of giving her a cuddle etc) but nothing seems to be working. She's only been like this the last four weeks or so.

#2 Neko NoNo

Posted 14 November 2012 - 06:31 AM

Hi BAB, how are you going with getting your DD used to noise? I have had similar trouble with my DS but he has always hated the vaccum- so much that I never use it if he is home now. Just seeing the vaccum makes him freak out. I am trying to leave pieces of it out for him to get used to (exposure therapy?) but he still won't go near it. It's pretty frustrating.

I wonder why your DD was suddenly frightened? Hope things are better for you now.

#3 Unatheowl

Posted 14 November 2012 - 06:43 AM

My DD is a very confident child but strange noises have always been hre downfall!  Now that she can talk she needs to point out and identify any lound noise from outside (bus, car, motocycle, helicopter).  Often we have long discussions as she is clearly quite nervous about it.  Once she has identified the noise, she seems happier about it.  She also HATES the coffee machine and mixer even though she knows what they are.  I think its fairly normal for some kids.  As far as I know there has been nothing that has made her this way, se just kind of always was.  I noticed it more when she becamse more mobile/communicative.

#4 winkywonkeydonkey

Posted 14 November 2012 - 06:50 AM

my dd was terrified of the garbage truck at that age. I never really made a big deal out of it and she grew out of it by 20 months and now is excited by the garbage truck original.gif

#5 Kay1

Posted 14 November 2012 - 07:08 AM

My now 4 year old goes through phases of this. What I've realised is that he has frequent bouts of hearing loss/ear infection and when it clears everything sounds very loud and scary for a while.

Or it could be sensory sensitivity to noise.

I think just upbeat comforting is the only way to go. I wouldn't deliberately expose her or ignore her distress, might just make it a bigger issue. I would pick her up and just say something like "I know you don't like loud sounds, but you'll be fine" and move on, distract etc. Teach her how to put her hands over her ears so she has some control. Warn her when you are going to do something noisy so she can move away etc.

#6 FiveAus

Posted 14 November 2012 - 07:15 AM

Have the child's hearing tested. Partial hearing loss can distort loud noises.

#7 Marchioness Flea

Posted 14 November 2012 - 07:15 AM

i read a while ago that you should laugh and smile while using the noise which scares the child. To show them it's not a scary noise.
Never worked for my child though, we had to wait for her to grow out of it really. She STILL doesn't like the hairdryer, but I tell her she's allowed to leave the room if she wants to.

I think their hearing is much more sensitive than ours, they haven't killed off any of the teeny tiny hairs (villi?) yet so sounds are louder to them than to us.

#8 Leghorn

Posted 14 November 2012 - 07:15 AM

My first thought is, it might be worth checking for middle ear infection etc. If they have less hearing, and then get full hearing back, the loud noises can be distressing as PP said. They can have an ear infection with very little symptoms, I think.

Otherwise I'd just say upbeat/low key comforting like PP suggested original.gif

#9 Razman

Posted 14 November 2012 - 07:44 AM

DS is 4 and still hates these noises. As he's got older he's improved and got better at tolerating them but they still upset him and he still gets anxious. DS is a prem and I've been educated by a number of other parents in sensory sensitivites which are common in the prem world. I've learned to accept that terror in a small child isn't attention seeking manipulation but terror.

So keep on cuddling her when she gets distressed and teach her to trust you to "protect" her from the "noisey". Reassure her your there, the "noisey" won't hurt and she'll be ok. Teach her to put her hands over her ears.

I'd get her ears and hearing checked to rule out a physical cause. If it is a sensory sensitivity then seeing a therapist for coping strategies maybe worthwhile.

We've just muddled through essentially avoiding most "noisey's" until he could cope ok.

A word of warning too - we found 2-3 yr the worst. DS was old enough to know the objects that caused the "noisey" and would anticipate it without having the maturity to know the noise wouldn't hurt, be short lived, whatever - merely seeing the object could be a cause for hysterics.

#10 Princess.cranky.pants

Posted 14 November 2012 - 09:50 AM

A lot of toddlers go though the stage of being scared of noises. All 3 of mine have been though it.

They have all hated the mower, vacuum cleaner, garbage truck. hair dryer, toilet hand dryers, rain.. anything really that was loud.

DD2 has some processing issues and we thought she might be sensory to loud noises. Age 2-3 was the worst. But now she is 4 and she has out grown most of it. Rain is about the the only thing she hates now.

Give DD a cuddle and tell her it's okay, then move onto the next thing.

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