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The Highly Sensitive Brain - 1st Edition - ISBN: 9780128182512, 9780128182529

The Highly Sensitive Brain

1st Edition

Research, Assessment, and Treatment of Sensory Processing Sensitivity

Editor: Bianca Acevedo
Paperback ISBN: 9780128182512
eBook ISBN: 9780128182529
Imprint: Academic Press
Published Date: 16th May 2020
Page Count: 222
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The Highly Sensitive Brain is the first handbook to cover the science, measurement, and clinical discussion of sensory processing sensitivity (SPS), a trait associated with enhanced responsivity, awareness, depth-of-processing and attunement to the environment and other individuals. Grounded in theoretical models of high sensitivity, this volume discusses the assessment of SPS in children and adults, as well as its health and social outcomes. This edition also synthesizes up-to-date research on the biological mechanisms associated with high sensitivity, such as its neural and genetic basis. It also discusses clinical issues related to SPS and seemingly-related disorders such as misophonia, a hyper-sensitivity to specific sounds. In addition, to practical assessment of SPS embedded throughout this volume is discussion of the biological basis of SPS, exploring why this trait exists and persists in humans
and other species.

The Highly Sensitive Brain is a useful handbook and may be of special interest to clinicians, physicians, health-care workers, educators, and researchers.

Key Features

  • Presents a neurobiological perspective of sensory processing sensitivity (SPS)
  • Provides assessment criteria and measurement tools for highly sensitive children and adults
  • Discusses the health and social outcomes of being highly sensitive in children and adults
  • Examines clinical issues related to high sensitivity
  • Offers practical applications and a future vision for integrating high sensitivity in our society


Researchers, students, and clinicians in psychology, psychiatry, neuroscience, medicine, psychiatry, neurology

Table of Contents

  1. The basics of sensory processing sensitivity
    2. Assessment of sensory processing sensitivity across the lifespan
    3. Sensory processing sensitivity—For better or for worse? Theory, evidence, and societal implications
    4. Health and social outcomes in highly sensitive persons
    5. Etiology of sensory processing sensitivity: Neurobiology, genes, and evolution
    6. Clinical assessment of sensory processing sensitivity
    7. Clinical characteristics of misophonia and its relation to sensory processing sensitivity: A critical analysis
    8. The future of sensory processing sensitivity on planet
    Earth and beyond


No. of pages:
© Academic Press 2020
16th May 2020
Academic Press
Paperback ISBN:
eBook ISBN:

About the Editor

Bianca Acevedo

Dr. Bianca Acevedo is a research scientist at the University of California, Santa Barbara (UCSB), a Visiting Scholar at New York University, as well as a private consultant, author, and public speaker. She has done extensive research on the neural basis of romantic love, high sensitivity, and mind-body interventions. Dr. Acevedo was the recipient of the 2012 International Women in Science Award. Her work has been funded by the National Science Foundation, the National Institute of Health, and the Alzheimer’s Association.

Affiliations and Expertise

Research Scientist, University of California, Santa Barbara (UCSB), Santa Barbara, CA, USA


"This is a high-quality text regarding its description and summation of existing knowledge of SPS. The book does a thorough job of describing the biological basis of SPS, including genetic and epigenetic components. These objective measurements will likely help legitimize SPS as a normal variant of sensory processing. The addition of several scales for the assessment of SPS as well as the descriptions of clinical strengths and weaknesses of individuals are highly
useful. The book could benefit from more visuals, perhaps to aid in the understanding of the complex science that it discusses in some chapters. The book also does not have any color and can feel pedantic at times. Lastly, the book's final chapter, which discusses how SPS individuals may be helpful with off-world space missions - while interesting - seems out of place with the content of the rest of the book. Ultimately, the strengths of the book outweigh
its deficiencies. " --Doody

Ratings and Reviews