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    This Is Why You Fucking Hate Hearing Other People Eating

    Prepare to be absolved of all your sound-hating sins.

    If the sound of people crunching apples, chewing gum, or typing loudly drives you crazy, you are not alone.

    Misophonia is a condition suffered by people who are sensitive to selected sounds.

    if you are eating loudly or chewing with your mouth open around me you should know I'm thinking about murdering you

    So, if you feel killing that guy on the tube who's loudly enjoying those crisps, then you're not being ~irrational~.

    The term was originally coined back in 2001 by Margaret and Pawel Jastreboff, to describe "abnormally strong reactions" to certain noises. But the strength of those reactions is only "partially determined by the physical characteristics of the upsetting sound".

    Dr Joanna White, a lecturer in audiology at Queen Margaret University, Edinburgh told BuzzFeed that misophonia was an all-too real condition.

    "The auditory system is very complex. We hear with our brains. The ears are just a way in. Patients very definitely report these symptoms and suffer real distress as a result of these conditions," she said.

    But not everyone who suffers from it finds the same sounds problematic.

    There is someone in the library typing so loudly I can hear it even with my headphones in 😭🔫

    People with misophonia don't all hate the same sounds – it depends on your relationship with those sounds. For some, the sound of chomping might be terrible while others might think that the sound of people picking crap out from under their nails is unbearable.

    Most people start to develop sound sensitivity around the age of 12.

    Patrick Burnell / gifburns.tumblr.com

    In a study of 483 undergraduates who reported some sensitivity to sounds, nearly 20% were found to have "clinically significant misophonia symptoms".

    Actions associated with sounds can be annoying too. So, if you hate the sound of people lip-smacking, then you may soon develop a hatred of people nibbling on their nails or finger skin, as the two activities often go hand-in-hand.

    Most misophonics are disturbed by problematic noises related to other people's behaviour.

    reddit.com

    The fact that these small, annoying sounds are created by other people is key. In an experiment, scientists found that misophonics were not bothered by the same sounds if they made them themselves. In fact, many said that mimicry was one way of dealing with noise.

    Back in 2013, Dutch scientists examined 42 sufferers and found all trigger sounds were human-made, but that none of the subjects were bothered by the same sounds when made by themselves. They found that 81% were most affected by chewing sounds, 64% to breathing and 69% to repetitive sounds like pen-clicking.

    The most common reaction to these sounds is anger, closely followed by angst.

    angryrunner.wordpress.com

    While most people either try to avoid offending noises or seek various cognitive therapies, there have been extreme cases of sufferers completely losing control in the face of annoying sounds.

    One man in Latvia even shot someone in a cinema after being "forced to suffer offensive mastication" at the hands of a loud popcorn eater.

    There isn't a clear understanding of what exactly causes the condition yet, but it is thought that misophonia might have both psychological and physiological roots.

    "It presents as a dislike and/or fear of specific sounds rather than a problem with the loudness of sounds," said Dr White.

    "For instance, a person may have a problem with the sound of other people eating. It can present (and is often treated) as more of a psychological condition, similar to OCD.

    "But, misophonia also seems to occur more often in patients with tinnitus and there is no reason to believe that there is not a physiological cause"

    One trigger might be stress.

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    "There may be an interaction with other conditions, including psychological conditions, and it is likely that (like tinnitus), it may be exacerbated by stress," Dr White told BuzzFeed.

    "It might be helped by relaxation techniques, counselling, mindfulness or cognitive behavioural therapy as well as technological interventions."

    Between 7 and 23% of Brits suffer from an even more extreme aversion to sounds called hyperacusis.

    Anything from dogs barking to fireworks and sirens can set off mental and physical pain, with up to 27% of children suffering from noise-induced anxiety.

    But that's not to say that people suffering from one condition are likely to suffer from the other.

    "They are linked in the sense that patients frequently have both," said Dr White, "but because our understanding of both conditions is limited, it is hard to say if there is a causal link".

    "Of course, patients with hyperacusis may well develop misophonia because the discomfort they experience when they hear certain sounds is likely to lead them to fear/avoid those sounds."

    TL;DR your hatred of people who eat like washing machines or hum at work is fully justified. Happy days.

    BuzzFeed Daily

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