Hate the sound of noisy eating? Here's what you need to know about misophonia

Hate the sound of noisy eating? Here's what you need to know about misophonia
From Global News - February 6, 2017

Do the sounds of crunching, chewing and heavy breathing drive you nuts? New research suggests that misophonia is the real dealpeople may be hypersensitive to these sounds because of changes in brain structure.

Misophonia, dubbed as a selective sound sensitivity syndrome, comes with a handful of trigger sounds. The noises could come from eating, breathing loudly, or whistling. Sometimes, a sound as trivial as a foot tapping or a person yawning is enough to leave you irritated or even angered.

Sound familiar?

In a new study, scientists out of Newcastle University in the U.K. say that theyve uncovered first evidence of clear changes in the brains frontal lobe that explain why some people grapple with misophonia.

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Patients with misophonia had strikingly similar clinical features and yet the syndrome is not recognized in any of the current clinical diagnostic schemes. This study demonstrates the critical brain changes as further evidence to convince a skeptical medical community that this is a genuine disorder, Dr. Sukhbinder Kumar, from the universitys Institute of Neuroscience, said in a statement.

So for those of us living with misophonia, Kumar is offering a reprieve. Youre not imagining your condition, he said.

For many people, this will come as welcome news as for the first time we have demonstrated a difference in brain structure and function in sufferers, he said.

Misophonia was first identified in 2001. But for years, the medical community was undecided about its legitimacy.

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Kumar and his team used MRI brain scans to study frontal lobe activity in people with misophonia as they listened to a handful of sounds.

They ranged from neutrala busy caf or rain falling, to unpleasant soundsa baby crying or a person screaming, to trigger sounds such as breathing and chewing.


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