Have you come across a situation when particular sounds which your friends or relatives made, like scratching, yawning or nail biting, got you panic stricken? If you have experienced this, then you are probably suffering from a condition called Misophonia. To know what Misophonia is and how can we treat it, go through the following piece of read right away!
What do we mean by Misophonia?
Misophonia can be defined as a behavior in which the individual has immense hatred for sound. It is also known by the name of sound rage or Sound Sensitivity Syndrome. Misophonia is a condition in which certain sounds invoke strong reactions in some people. The patients are intolerant to repeating or patterned sounds. For instance, if everyday noises like clicking of a pen, dripping of a tap or chewing makes a person irritated or panic stricken, they are most likely suffering from misophonia. Although there have been many cases of misophonia for decades, this disorder was finally recognized as a true medical condition only in the 1990s.
What are the Causes of Misophonia?
The main cause of misophonia is still a mystery, but research is being carried on to determine the exact cause of misophonia. Some researchers believe misophonia to be a result of a mental disorder, which is caused by the central auditory system, while others hold the sensory system of hearing, including the ears, responsible for causing misophonia. Misophonia generally occurs in people who get angry and have emotional compulsive behaviour, since they tend to hear sounds more frequently in their surroundings.
What are the Symptoms of Misophonia?
Misophonia is basically a noise syndrome, which begins with a trigger-sound, and many more sounds which gradually get added to the list of triggers. The sounds which trigger Misophonia are often a result of negative emotions and reactions like jealousy, frustration, sadness etc. The symptoms of misophonia can be observed when a child enters the teenage years even though age is not a factor in disease onset. Common misophonia symptoms associated with these sounds are anger, irritation, aggression, frustration and desire to leave the place.
These symptoms of misophonia can affect the patient’s relation with the person who annoys them. It keeps the sufferer of misophonia away from social life and relationships. In fact, misophonia patients can even land up having a verbal spat or a physical quarrel with the person who make these sounds. Although these misophonia symptoms are common, their underlying cause is yet to be determined.
How Can We Treat Misophonia?
There is no specific cure for misophonia at the moment. However, the doctor can advise the patient to undergo different kinds of therapy which can help ease the symptoms of misophonia. While undergoing treatment, is also important that Misophonia patients avoid people who they think cause their behaviour. Some of the methods which can help in treating Misophonia are:
Treatment of Misophonia by Consulting a Psychiatrist. Misophonia is also believed to be a psychiatric disorder and thus can be treated and managed by experienced psychiatrists. These doctors observe the patient’s patterns and their symptoms for a few days, and then on identifying the patient’s exact behaviour, they start treating the misophonia effectively.
Tinnitus Retraining Therapy for Managing Misophonia. Tinnitus retraining therapy proves helpful in enhancing the patient’s ability to tolerate different noises in misophonia. It improves the overall conscious and subconscious level of human being and helps manage misophonia better. Cognitive psychotherapy can also be used to effectively treat mood swings and thoughts in the patient suffering from misophonia.
Medications for Treating Misophonia. The doctor can also prescribe certain medicines to the misophonia patient depending on the symptoms. For instance, certain oral medications used to treat depression and aggression also help in treatment of misophonia.
Outlook: How to Live with Misophonia?
While some misophonia sufferers try to mask the trigger-sounds with music, others just try avoiding them. Depending on the severity of the condition, Misophonia can even have serious consequences. Misophonia patients may keep away from engaging in social activities, building-up relationships, or even leaving the house. Misophonia patients often tend to feel alienated and misunderstood because others often write them off as overly-sensitive or hysterical. It is advisable that these Misophonia patients see a doctor to get their condition treated. Just talking about their condition can also prove to be helpful in managing misophonia.