Sensory Deprivation

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Sensory Deprivation

Sensory deprivation is the deliberate reduction or removal of stimuli from one or more of the senses. Simple devices such as blindfolds or hoods and earmuffs can cut off sight and hearing, while more complex devices can also cut off the sense of smell, touch, taste, thermoception (heat-sense), and 'gravity'. 


Sensory deprivation has been used in various alternative medicines and in psychological experiments (e.g. with an isolation tank). Sensory deprivation can be used also in sexual acts to produce a feeling of repression or make other senses more sensitive; for example, the sensation of touch may be stronger when a blindfold is in use.


Short-term sessions of sensory deprivation are described as relaxing and conducive to meditation; however, extended or forced sensory deprivation can result in hallucinations and  bizarre thoughts.


White torture is a type of psychological torture that includes extreme sensory deprivation and isolation. Carrying out this type of torture makes the detainee lose personal identity through long periods of isolation.