What is Hypersensitivity?

Hypersensitivity is a particular emotional function that affects 15 to 20% of the population. This represents a higher than average sensitivity to stimuli, a sensitivity that is as much physiological, biological as psychological. This leads to an amplification of the facts and their consequences, positive or negative.


Hypersensitivity is not a disorder but a feature.


Elaine Aaron, Doctor of Psychology, demonstrated in 1991 that hypersensitive people have brain processes that result in over-arousal in neural areas relating to emotions and interaction, generating greater empathy . Thus, certain areas turn out to be more responsive to emotional responses and interactions in people who are hypersensitive than in those who are not. Amplifier of any experience, hypersensitivity participates as much in the development of the skills of the individual, of its qualities, as of a particular disorder: what is moderately stimulating for most people will become extremely stimulating and can take the form of a "trauma".

This brings increased sensitivity to physiological reactions, to any dysfunctional example, fatigability, development of hyper-vigilance.   


Its characteristics are:


the hyperesthesia , that is to say an overreaction to sensory stimuli. There is also more complex and subtle sensory processing.

the hyper- emotional, emotions heightened, highlighted thanks to neuroscience

the deep processing of information with a sense of detail and subtleness, with a greater use of perceptual processing areas of information

the empathy , intuition and creativity

Thus, the hypersensitive has many qualities: capacities of observation, reflection, learning and concentration, artistic sensitivity, capacities for tasks requiring vigilance, precision, speed ...


Nevertheless, this particular relationship to the world has an impact on the quality of the relationships that the child has with his family and at school. His reactions can disconcert and lead to great incomprehension. At school, the child perceives his difference and the others send him a negative image of himself.


Due to their emotional hyper- reactivity and extreme lucidity , the hypersensitive child may be more anxious than the average person. As a result, the hypersensitive adolescent may experience the interaction with others as a source of disappointment, frustration, pain and incomprehension.



There is also an incessant questioning on the outside, the environment, the relationship with others and also on oneself. This acute perception triggers structural anxiety

How to help your hypersensitive child or teenager? And as an adult?

What are the solutions to better accept yourself as you are?

This will be the subject of my next article ...

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