Misophonia, literally “hatred of sound,” is a putative disorder of uncertain classification in which negative emotions, thoughts, and physical reactions are triggered by specific sounds. Source
There are certain sounds that I absolutely H.A.T.E. Chewing, sniffing, heavy breathing, snoring and repetitive sounds, foot tapping or banging sounds especially, can set off my irritation to a new new level in a split second.
It’s really hard for my family, and I’ve had to leave the room to get away from whatever sound is getting to me.
20/20 aired a show on Medical Mysteries that featured Misophonia and it really gives you a “fly on the wall” look at what its like to suffer from it.
Diagnosis and Treatment of Misophonia
There are no standard diagnostic criteria. Misophonia is distinguished from hyperacusis, which is not specific to a given sound and does not involve a similar strong reaction, and from phonophobia, which is a fear of a specific sound, but it may occur with either.
It is not clear whether people with misophonia usually have comorbid conditions, nor whether there is a genetic component.
There are no evidence-based treatments for the condition; health care providers generally try to help people cope with it by recognizing what the person is experiencing, and by working on coping strategies with the person. Some small studies have been published on the use of sound therapy similar to tinnitus retraining therapy and on cognitive behavioral therapy and particularly exposure therapy, to help people become less aware of the trigger sound.
If you, or someone you know, suffers from depression, or any other mental health issues, and needs help, please contact the South African Depression and Anxiety Group. SADAG is Africa’s largest mental health support and advocacy group. On this website you will find comprehensive mental health information and resources to help you, a family member or loved one.
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