On Clothing



Someone asked me this question recently, and I thought I’d share.

If you are someone with “sensitive senses” (fibromyalgia, chronic pain, anxiety, sensory processing disorder, etc.) then you may have found your clothes bothersome, frustrating or even triggers for pain.

It will take some experimenting on your end, but here’s what I’ve done for myself:

I mostly wear black, grey, white, and blue. These are calming colors for me and simple to match so I do not become overwhelmed with my choices.

I wear plain things that can be dressed up or down easily while also providing comfort. No frills or garments that need to be fidgeted with during the day, which can really drain my energy. I bought pijama pants on clearance at Walmart and can dress them up with some flats and a blouse with a comfy blazer for work days, and no one can tell I’m wearing PJs. (Dressing “nice” is important to me because it helps me feel more put together, especially if I’m struggling with pain, so I like the versatility of comfy clothes that can pass for causal and/or professional depending on how I wear them.)

I wear natural fibers like cotton, linen, and wool. You may not think about it mattering, but it made so much difference for me when I switched.

I gave up jeans. I actually like slacks and dress pants better. Or maxi skirts/dresses. Or leggings with a tunic. Or previously mentioned PJs. Just anything that’s not rough and constricting.

I am never without a jacket or poncho that I can wrap around me when I need a buffer between myself and other people/stimulus.

I hope some of these tips might help you and give you ideas with clothing. It’s not something I thought would make a big difference for managing my health, but every little bit helps in the day-to-day, you know?

I don’t tend to find my clothing a trigger for anything but I agree that feeling good in your clothes – whether that means looking nice or just being comfy – can help with mental and physical health. I feel better when I’m in a comfy jumper and a skirt with thick tights or leggings. I still wear jeans but not as much any more because I find they can be restrictive. The only exception is a pair of jeans that are a size too big for me so I’ve got plenty of room to move in them.

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