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Misophonia , translated to “hatred of sound,” is a chronic condition that causes intense emotional reactions to specific sounds. The most common triggers include those provoked by the mouth (chewing gum or food, popping lips), the nose (breathing, sniffing, and blowing) or the fingers (typing, clicking pen, drumming on the table). Reactions to the specific sound may be mild or strong and include anxiety, disgust, rage, hatred, panic, fear or a serious emotional distress with violence and suicidal thoughts. Symptoms usually start in childhood or in the early teenage years, and severity increases over time.
The cause of misophonia is not yet known. Research has suggested it may relate to parts of the brain that are responsible for processing and regulating emotions. Many people with misophonia have relatives with similar symptoms.
Misophonia does affect daily life, but it may be managed by combining different therapies such as sound therapy with counseling, cognitive- behavioral therapy (CBT) and exposure, and dialectical behavior therapy. Hearing plugs or aids, antidepressant medications, and an active lifestyle (to manage stress) may also be helpful.
It is important to note that misophonia is not listed in any psychiatric classification systems. Some researchers believe misophonia should be considered a new mental disorder within the spectrum of obsessive-compulsive related disorders. Others think it is a feature of a broader syndrome of sensory intolerance, rather than a separate disorder.
Source: GARD Last updated on 05-01-20
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