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peppermint

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Reply with quote  #1 
Hi everyone! Wow...I am so happy and surprised there is a NAME for this problem. I'm a 19 year old college student and a very sensitive person in general. Ever since I was a very little kid, I remember being absolutely driven MAD by oral sounds (chewing, sucking, slurping, anything!) My little sister would be drinking her bottle loudly and I remember telling her to stop

My sister is the same way. We are both irritated by sniffling, chewing, gum smacking (the absolute WORST), slurping, sucking and eating. We hate watching people chew...it makes us crazy! We hate the sound of people chewing too, and it's so bad that I have trouble eating with loud eaters. It drives me nuts! Pen clicking, repetitive noises...it makes me feel like I want to punch someone. It GRATES on my nerves!

I am pretty sure it is genetic, as my mother is highly irritated by gum smacking, whistling (she HATES whistling), and any repetitive noise. She never bought us noisy toys because of this!

I've noticed that I can sometimes force myself to not be bothered, but only if I am relaxed and not tired, tense or stressed in any way. I used to have trouble concentrating in school because during tests it would be so quiet you could hear every little sound!

I am so sensitive to noise that I sleep with ear plugs. Every night, even when it is VERY quiet. I cannot fall asleep through talking (it pulls me out of sleep), the TV, music, etc. I can drift off, but I will go in and out if there is outside noise.

I think part of the problem is that I have PERFECT hearing. I was tested years ago and they told me my hearing was exceptional. So clearly, this has something to do with it.

Interestingly, there are some plus-sides to this issue! I love loud and rich music. Music calms me instantly. I love a lot of sounds and I highly appreciate good sound quality. Because of my sensitivity, I can notice the SLIGHTEST differences in mp3 or any kind of digital music quality. I have to wear High-Quality headphones or it bothers me when the music sounds "tinny". I can't use earbuds. I can't use bad quality headphones.

I can't concentrate if people are talking/laughing unless I "zone out", which I have no control over.

The sound of gum smacking (especially the horrible kind where the person CRACKLES the gum) literally induces my gag reflex. Does this happen to anyone else? I am so incredibly annoyed that the mere THOUGHT of this sound makes me gag.

I don't know if this is related, but I often gag at the sight of stray hairs. Except dog hair, that doesn't bother me.

So basically, human noises make me crazy. I find the noises (slurping, sucking, panting) of my dogs endearing. Isn't that odd? Animal noises don't bother me at all. I find them relaxing. But people noises? Irritating. Forget it.

So...any advice? Suggestions? Comments? I am sooo excited to find people like me!

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Ed

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Posts: 112
Reply with quote  #2 
Well, if you're listening to music loud, I'm thinking this is Misophonia, not Hyperacusis Although earplugs at night, hmmmm. But I'm not the doctor! Have you been to a doctor anyhow?

It sounds like you also just have really really good hearing! And about the tired/stressed thing, everyone seems to get this, a worsening with fatigue or stress, but hey I think that's the same for most ailments, or just being in a bad mood hah.

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saab1216

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Posts: 95
Reply with quote  #3 
Ed, I had very bad hyperacusis last year and couldn't tolerate the sound of running water. Now I listen to loud music. The cymbals do hurt a little from the tone and not the volume. If the bass is turned up high,I don't mind as much.I went from hyperacusis to sound sensitive misophonia. I cannot tolerate digital broadcasts of any kind. The "s" sound is sooooo sharp and on the radio I hear saliva sounds clearly. I am a true mystery case because Ive had both hyperacusis and soft sound sensitivity. Don't get me wrong though, I cant bear when people raise their voice! It really hurts!
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Paul H
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Johnloudb

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Reply with quote  #4 

Quote:
I cannot tolerate digital broadcasts of any kind. 

You mean HD radio? I can't either ... it stinks. Satalite radio may be the same deal, don't know. Only FM for me thanks.

Quote:
I am a true mystery case because Ive had both hyperacusis and soft sound sensitivity.

You're really not a mystery .... only a mystery to that Dr. what's her name. The one you mentioned awhile back that you emailed. 

Quote:
I am so sensitive to noise that I sleep with ear plugs. Every night, even when it is VERY quiet. I cannot fall asleep through talking (it pulls me out of sleep), the TV, music, etc. I can drift off, but I will go in and out if there is outside noise.

Hi Peppermint,

Using ear plugs at night is not good for your auditory system. It makes your ears more sensitive during the day. Really, you should gradually try to quit using them at night. And gradually try some sound enrichment ( a pleasant sound ), like nature sounds from a nature sound radio. Just play it very softly. It will help you tolerate other random sounds you hear at night, so they don't disturb your sleep.

Anyway, I also have misophonia. I know how frustrating some quiet sounds can be even in loud places. But, there is treatment for it. The key is to change the way you respond to these sounds. Some try cognitive brain therapy.

Another website you might check out is here (www.tinnitus.org). The TRT paper by Dr. Hazell explains the mechanism behind how our hearing works.


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Gizmookie

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Posts: 342
Reply with quote  #5 
Hey Peppermint.  Welcome.  I have the same thing as you.  Misophonia.  I get irrate at the sounds of people chewing gum, chomping chips/popcorn, sniffing, repetitive things like toe tapping, etc...   My dogs licking drives me nuts as well (love them to death though!).

Quote:
Originally Posted by peppermint
I am pretty sure it is genetic, as my mother is highly irritated by gum smacking, whistling (she HATES whistling), and any repetitive noise.


I believe this to be genetic.  My mother, sister and niece have it as well.  I am worst followed by my niece. 

Quote:
Originally Posted by peppermint
I am so sensitive to noise that I sleep with ear plugs. Every night, even when it is VERY quiet. I cannot fall asleep through talking (it pulls me out of sleep), the TV, music, etc. I can drift off, but I will go in and out if there is outside noise.


I am the same way.  However, I wouldn't recommend wearing earplugs because often times it can actually make you more sensitive as it did in my case.  I would recommend using something like a sound machine that plays ocean waves or something.   Is there a particular sound you enjoy to hear such as rain, etc...?

Quote:
Originally Posted by peppermint
I was tested years ago and they told me my hearing was exceptional. So clearly, this has something to do with it.

Me too.  I can hear things that nobody else hears.  I am always saying, "what's that noise?"  My husband can never hear it but then after inspection finds the noise.  Ha ha.  He used to think I was loony. 

Quote:
Originally Posted by peppermint
I love loud and rich music. Music calms me instantly. I love a lot of sounds and I highly appreciate good sound quality.
 

This is common with those with Misophonia.  Loud sounds don't bother us... sometimes the louder the better.  I LOVE my music loud as well.

My advice... avoid earplugs if at all possible.  Use sound to combat sound if that makes any sense.   Also, search the site for any posts on Misophonia and look into Cognitive Behavioral Therapy.  It can teach you how to calm yourself down a little when you hear the sounds that upset you. 

Darlene
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saab1216

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Posts: 95
Reply with quote  #6 
John That would be Dr.Erin Walborn. She was listed on this site.
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Paul H
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lowerthat3

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Reply with quote  #7 

When I worked, I could hear conversations several desks away.  Folks had their own radio stations, and that was a nightmare for me to hear country and the oldies and whatever else at the same time.  Add all the other office sounds and I was nuts.  Now that I have a diagnosis, it all makes sense.  Does anyone here work and what are the solutions for office work?


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BJ
June 2008
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