Ever since I was a teenage lad, I've noticed that some people eating some food types in close proximity to myself could make me feel a rage and a overwhelming desire to act in the fight or flight mode. With me it was when I first heard my mum eating cornflakes. The noise of 'munch, munch munch' was one of the worst environmental noises I've yet to react to.
Ive heard people say that fingernails dragged accross some surfaces, or the sound of chalk on a blackboard can be upsetting. Breaking up polystyrene etc. Not having had a adverse reaction to any of the latter three. I have been stumped with my own thoughts and reactions to noisy eaters. My partner was 'munching' on a tube if smarties the other night while I was sat quietly reading. The same overwhelming feelings of fight or flight came over me. I had to ask my partner what she was eating that could make such a loud unpleasant sound. It sounded like a horse munching on a endless bucket of carrots.
A few weeks ago on radio four. Some discussion was going on about people who had a similar reaction to people making some noise when eating and mentioned a scientific name for it. Misophonia. Misophonics (people who are effected by these kinds of sounds) have been found to have more fatty tissue round nerves (enlarged area in the brain) and this is possibly the reason some sounds are amplified and become annoying to Misophonics. Since this was largely unknown about in 2000 and following research given the name in 2013.
Ive extracted some info from a article I've found online. https://www.newscientist.com/article...ple-with-rage/
Imagine feeling angry or upset whenever you hear a certain everyday sound. It’s a condition called misophonia, and we know little about its causes. Now there’s evidence that misophonics show distinctive brain activity whenever they hear their trigger sounds, a finding that could help devise coping strategies and treatments.
Olana Tansley-Hancock knows misophonia’s symptoms only too well. From the age of about 7 or 8, she experienced feelings of rage and discomfort whenever she heard the sound of other people eating. By adolescence, she was eating many of her meals alone. As time wore on, many more sounds would trigger her misophonia. Rustling papers and tapping toes on train journeys constantly forced her to change seats and carriages. Clacking keyboards in the office meant she was always making excuses to leave the room.
Now it seems there may be a neurological explanation for this. Sukhbinder Kumar and his team at Newcastle University, UK, carried out a series of tests on 20 volunteers with a severe form of misophonia, as well as 22 people who don’t have it. Both groups listened to neutral noises, like the sound of rain; unpleasant sounds, such as a baby crying; and sounds that were triggers for the misophonics, such as chewing or breathing noises.
While both groups reacted to the neutral and unpleasant sounds in a similar way, the misophonic group experienced increased heart rates and skin conductance – both signs of the body’s fight-or-flight response – when they heard trigger sounds.
Brain scans revealed that the misophonics had heightened activity in the anterior insular cortex (AIC), an area known to play a central role in the system that determines which things we should pay attention to. When the trigger sounds were played, there was not only more activity in this region but also abnormally high levels of connectivity to other regions. “The AIC is hyperconnected to structures that are involved in emotion regulating and memory,” says Kumar.
There was also increased connectivity to regions involved in the default mode network, which helps summon memories and processes internally generated thoughts. In misophonics, one of these regions, called the ventromedial prefrontal cortex (vmPFC), had a higher level of myelination – fatty sheaths that surround nerve cells and help conduct their signals – which may explain the greater connectivity.
My boy this Christmas commented about one of our guest who came for Christmas diner. My boy said he eats with his mouth open and is noises. Although his breathing did not bother me, It reminded me of some of my earlier experiences. When our guest sat with us to eat another meal. I made a point of listening. It wasn't the noises of eating food. It was our guest breathing noises while he eat. This got me wondering if our boy suffers from misophonia also and that his trigger sounds are different to my own.
Its early days with research but Im aware that every now and then I will find sometimes people eating certain things when in audible range will have the same effect on me, I'm too polite and have no right to ask it tell people to stop eating or eat quietly. However infuriating Or unpleasant I may find it.
Im wondering how many other people are effected by everyday sounds/noises?