It’s common for people to get annoyed by particular sounds or actions such as hearing people chew or hearing pens click. However, some people absolutely can’t stand those kinds of sounds. A new study suggests that it comes from a disorder called misophonia.
Those inflicted with misophonia despise certain noises like breathing and chewing. Even pen clicking can be a trigger.
Timothy Griffith, a professor of cognitive neurology in London says that he was one that didn’t believe in the disorder. It took for him to actually see patients with similar attributes for him to realize that this disease is real.
Griffith’s research team includes 20 people with the disorder and 22 people without it. They ran brain scans on both groups and discovered that those with the ailment seem to have an anomaly in the part of the brain that controls their emotions. The ailment causes their brain to go into high gear when hearing certain noises.
Researchers found that in the brains of those with misophonia the connective pattern in the frontal lobe was different. According to Griffith, the area in the brain that would typically stifle unusual reactions to sounds is blocked.
Those who say they constantly hear a ringing in their ears may be suffering from exploding head syndrome, which is treatable. Griffiths team also concludes that certain sounds cause physical effects such as rapid heartbeat in those with misophonia.
Researchers intend to use the facts from the study to help treat others with the disease. Griffith also believes that the study will motivate researchers to seek changes in similar brain disorders that cause people to have unusual emotional reactions.
Sukhbinder Kumar, who lead the study, reports that the research should come as good news for those who suffer from misophonia. He and his team were able to see that there are differences in the brains of those who suffer from the disorder and those who do not. Kumar teaches at Newcastle University and University College London.
According to Kumar, people with the disease tend to also have the same symptoms. Kumar states that the study helps encourage those skeptical of the disorder to see for themselves that it is real. The study also shows how the brain changes with certain noises and how they affect the individual.