Am I the Only One to Find White Noise F'ing Annoying?

I keep hearing that white noise gently blocks distracting other noises, that it helps you relax and sleep and all that.

Not me. You know what white noise is like to me?

there, isn’t that a lot less distracting?
now get some sleep dear

How the bleeding hell can anyone sleep with all that roaring/swooshing/hissing going on? Is it just me?

You have it on too loud.

I hate it. My husband LOVES white noise, and he’s turn on anything with a fan around bedtime.

When I notice them, I’ll turn them off, and I get an immediate rush of relief and peace. I don’t even notice how nervous the noise makes me until it’s gone.

noise generators can help people who have tinnitus (like I do) because they’re broad-spectrum and provide masking. if you don’t have such an affliction, then they may not be of any use.

I also hate it. It’s not relaxing, but quite distracting and annoying. Even a fairly quiet fan can drive me nuts. I sleep with foam earplugs that block out all sound.

White noise, like static or wind or rain (sound generators), nope, don’t like them. They sound fake and often times I can find the loop. Cracking a window when it’s raining or windy I don’t mind. But if it’s raining and the rain is, say, dripping off the gutter so on top of the rain I can still hear drip drip drip drip, that’ll drive me nuts.

If I need something like that to help me fall asleep I’ll put on a talk based podcast. Tedtalks or Freakonomics or something. Those usually knock me out in 5 minutes. I like TED because if I wake up 45 minutes later it’s not still going.

I remember hearing a comedian who said (as part of a joke) that he would turn on a baseball game to fall asleep. Just barely loud enough to hear it, but quiet enough that he couldn’t pay attention to it. Just background noise.

Try pink noise. It’s supposed to be ‘more natural’. (play it softly)

I love white noise. Too much quiet makes me crazy.

Not to hijack too much, but I like sharing random facts. Today I learned that female hormones can affect hearing. I’m ovulating like a mofo, and it seems as if I suddenly have supersonic hearing. Yesterday and today I couldn’t concentrate through all the random noises my ears were picking up at work.

Estrogen controls how the brain processes sound

Progesterone therapy may harm hearing.

AD(H)D will do that too. Part of my issues reading/studying in high school is that I’d spend more time listening to a humming florescent light blub or trying to figure out what the noise was down the hall. Even now, if I’m trying to fall asleep and here some kind of noise in my house, it’ll drive me batty. When other people are saying ‘who cares’, I’m wondering why it sounds like a motor kicked on or a relay is ticking or a water is dribbling. It’ll drive me mad until I find the source.
At work, the first thing I do when I walk into the office is mute the boss’s radio. I can’t read/do accounting with music. On top of that, I know they have to have a radio on in the backroom (which I can hear) and one in the store (which I can also hear). It took me months of begging to convince them to put them on the same station. Do you know how distracting it is to listen to two different radio stations all day long? Some people can tune that out, I focus on it.

Sound masking is a surprisingly complicated topic. Here are some insights I have learned.

  1. Pink noise, not white noise, for sound masking. I personally prefer brown noise for sleep (like a waterfall)
  2. Sound masking is for making sounds indistinct, not for entirely obliterating them. If you’re trying to do the latter, it will be so loud as to drive you insane.
  3. Nature sounds like rain and jungle waterfalls seem nice until you hear the loop. Chances are that if you’ve read this far, you’re probably the sort of person who will hear the loop on the first go.

Hope this helps.

Hate it. Have been known to crawl under doctor office furniture to find it and kill it. Receptionists hate me, but after they see me do it, they fear me too much to express it.

If I didn’t play white noise during sleep, everything would wake me up. My cats slurping while grooming each other, a neighbor coming home, someone talking outside, a car alarm or horn honking or sirens in the distance, crickets, cicadas, birds. It’s not really loud, as I can hear those things with it playing, they’re just not very distinct and when I’m out everything is even enough that I can remain asleep uninterrupted.

I can only play it on the way to sleep and during sleeping. Once I’m up in the morning I have to turn it off right away because it starts to annoy me.

As I mentioned above, music helps me fall asleep. Back when I was a restless teen, I HAD to have music on or I’d lay in bed for hours. But what I did was use a station that had a morning show that I liked, that way once my alarm went off I couldn’t fall back asleep because I get interested in what they were talking about. IIRC, I’d even try to fall asleep with the music just a little tiny bit too loud, that way the morning show was loud also and would be sure to keep me up*.
The only thing that bugged me about that show is that the male personality’s voice was so low that it would dip into the subwoofer.

*going to bed with a full bladder is also a good way to make sure you get out of bed when your alarm goes off.

I used to sleep with headphones on when I was a teen. I can’t say I got good sleep, though. The music stopping if it was a tape would wake me up. A radio station’s intermittent commercials, DJ’s talking, different tempos of music, whatever, would disrupt my sleep or I would incorporate it into my dreams. Made for some pretty messed up sleeping, even though falling asleep to music is nice. So white noise it ended up, so my sleep distractions don’t get distracted!

I thought this would be a Norwegian Metal Band thread.

The fridge is doing the noise now. I don’t know what color that is.

I find white noise very comforting but it must not have irregularities or ‘loop ends’. I love when it’s summer nighttime a/c season, the sound of the fan and compressor put me right to sleep. While the compressor can cycle on and off, the fan must stay running, none of this energy efficient the fan turns off stuff (also I don’t like the air to stop moving). Ideally however the compressor should also run for the best experience. For this reason I do like a slightly undersized a/c for my bedroom.

At the end of the summer, I sometimes find it hard to adjust back, I used to use a clock radio tuned to the cleanest static I could find (which is not easy) and have that play. I didn’t need to loud, but just there in the background. My ex-wife was the opposite, so it was good we went our separate ways.

I hate white noise too. I don’t mind the sound of steady rain, but is not relaxing. I like sleeping too TV shows, so i keep a few episodes of shows with an even tempo (like Monk) on the DVR to play on low volume…

I thought this was going to be a thread about a new tinnitus sufferer. It gets easier if/when you can learn to live with it. I have the a/c on all year round but just on ‘fan’ in the winter, but that’s partly because my bedroom window faces a mosque. It’s a fair distance, but without my a/c on the yodeling wakes me up at 3:47am and I’m none-too-pleased.

Geez, I get it that it helps some people, but even quiet and low white noise drives me batty.

I think I might find background noise - people talking in the distance, house stuff clicking or creaking, whatever - reassuring because some part of my brain is reading that as “business as usual, not to worry” but the white noise masks that and I don’t have a clue what’s happening beyond the bedroom. It’s like being blindfolded, but my ears instead of my eyes. Not sure if that makes sense to anyone else.