White noise is a term used to describe the use of sound to soothe or calm the body and the senses. Typically, white noise is used in children to help them sleep and is often used by adults who live with insomnia to alleviate any complications associated with an ability to fall asleep soundly. If you, or someone you love, lives with schizophrenia, the use of white noise may be beneficial to calming and soothing the mind and alleviating some of the schizophrenia traits.
The sounds of fans, calming music, water trickling – these are all examples of white noise that is commonly used in the home. When placed a steady sound level, consistently through the night, many adults find benefit from white noise and report feeling more relaxed after a full night of sleep. For individuals with mental health complications, obtaining a full night of sleep can be challenging and, oftentimes, the use of white noise is not immediately considered. But, in the home, white noise may provide the benefit of not only providing a full night of sleep but also alleviating mental health complications during the day.
Symptoms of schizophrenia, at night, might include sleep walking, sleep talking and even night eating. During the day, schizophrenia patients may experience complications with hallucinations, paranoia or even become easily distracted by light and sound. With a calming inclusion of white noise in the home, many schizophrenics report an improvement in their symptoms both during the day and at night.
To test the effectiveness of white noise on your symptoms of schizophrenia, try purchasing an oscillating fan for a few rooms in your house. Turn each fan on to a very low level and journal your feelings and symptoms throughout a 48 hour period. It is almost certain that the inclusion of this simple, low-cost white noise, you will experience a renewed sense of calming and relaxation. The key to successfully including white noise in your home will lie, in part, on your ability to remove, or drown out, other distracting noises such as a television, children playing, or even external noise outside of your home.
Schizophrenia is a complex mental health complication that affects thousands of adults each year. Without proper management of symptoms, many schizophrenics report complications with sleep and an inability to work or perform activities of daily living. With white noise, many adults with schizophrenia find their symptoms are alleviated and they can restore some normalcy to their lives. Sources: Journal of Psychiatric Medicine, 2006: 67: pp. 45-59.