Does anyone experience sensory overload like this?

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248RPA
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21 Oct 2016, 10:57 pm

I actually don't remember having a meltdown due to sensory overload, only due to other things. Instead, I experience sensory overload like this:

First, I'll be stimming and fidgeting non-stop. If I don't have to be seated in a desk, then I'll run around, jump, spin in circles, etc. I have Tourettes too, and I'll also start ticcing more than usual.

Then, I'll go completely still and stare intensely at something (or nothing). I often want to move, but I can't. Even if I do manage force myself to move, my movement is slow and sluggish. However, someone or something can startle me out of this trance, but it's not too long before I'm gone again.

I guess that at first I do anything to produce output to counteract the input. Then I get tired and just shut down.


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skibum
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22 Oct 2016, 9:18 am

When you can't move, that is Autistic Catatonia. I just read about that. You are not alone this.


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248RPA
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22 Oct 2016, 10:08 am

skibum wrote:
When you can't move, that is Autistic Catatonia. I just read about that. You are not alone this.


I've never heard of that. I'll check it out.


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22 Oct 2016, 3:42 pm

Yeah, shutdowns are a pretty common response to sensory overload. How tired and/or irritated I am depends on whether I go into shutdown or meltdown when overloaded. Your experience sounds a lot like mine; I zero my focus in on one tiny aspect of the environment and everything else seems to disappear, and moving becomes very difficult, a lot more effort than it's worth.


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22 Oct 2016, 4:16 pm

That sounds a lot like my reaction to Sensory Overload, too, except the running/jumping/spinning and Tourette syndrome. I don't have Tourette's. Sometimes I say random weird things or make odd noises, but it's not compulsive. I can choose not to speak or make strange sounds, and from my understanding of Tourette syndrome, blurting out words or phrases isn't optional. I'm more likely to rock than to run or jump or spin, or fidget with something in my hands.


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22 Oct 2016, 5:39 pm

I can get catatonic if I have no clear exit route. Luckily I've stopped going catatonic during fire alarms because I memorize the location of exits so that muscle memory can lead me to safety/away from the noise. But if I'm in the middle of a crowd or otherwise lost, my legs will give out and I'll just sit down and cry.



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22 Oct 2016, 8:50 pm

I'm not sure if I've ever had a meltdown, but I often have suffered shutdowns; sensory overload usually causes a kind of progressive set of symptoms for me, depending on how long I am exposed to the stimulus; ranging from worsening fatigue to confusion, dizziness, and slow motor response, despite a sense of lightness and increasing detachment from my present surroundings, probably an internal coping mechanism to reduce incoming stimuli.

Usually I'm cognizant enough to move so long as I have someone to follow, but higher functions are difficult, can't say I have gone fully catatonic before, but I can't remember.


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23 Oct 2016, 4:33 pm

The second part where you can't move is what I get like if I shutdown and I stare also. Sometimes I can't talk even though I hear and see everything around me.



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23 Oct 2016, 4:38 pm

248RPA wrote:
skibum wrote:
When you can't move, that is Autistic Catatonia. I just read about that. You are not alone this.


I've never heard of that. I'll check it out.


I hadn't heard of this either, but I have experienced it. It happens to me when I start to remember something traumatic, or if I can't make sense of some sort of emotional situation. I can't move, can't speak, but am aware of everything around me. Going to read more about this.



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23 Oct 2016, 4:51 pm

Quote:

if I can't make sense of some sort of emotional situation.

Pretty much all the times I've had shutdown was largely because of this.



248RPA
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23 Oct 2016, 5:17 pm

It seems like autistic catatonia is a medical name for a shutdown.

Apparently, seemingly pointless hyperactivity can be a symptom of catatonia too.


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23 Oct 2016, 5:25 pm

I didn't know that Autistic Catatonia is a thing. But, yes, I have had more shutdowns than meltdowns in my life.


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23 Oct 2016, 6:06 pm

248RPA wrote:
It seems like autistic catatonia is a medical name for a shutdown.

Apparently, seemingly pointless hyperactivity can be a symptom of catatonia too.

No shutdowns are different. Autistic catatonia is actual catatonia. It can last for several days.


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23 Oct 2016, 6:07 pm

AspieUtah wrote:
I didn't know that Autistic Catatonia is a thing. But, yes, I have had more shutdowns than meltdowns in my life.

It is a thing.


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slw1990
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23 Oct 2016, 6:25 pm

I don't really move around a lot, but I usually start to become more quiet and clumsy and I also have more trouble processing things.



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24 Oct 2016, 1:28 am

The Access Forbidden glitch is happening again. Don't feel like resubmitting my original post over and over.