Share Your Tips for Coping with Misophonia

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  • #5221 Reply

      One (sort of wonderful) thing I’ve found by accident while dealing with misophonia triggers over the years is that if I’m in a particularly elevated mood, laughing and socializing with people who commonly trigger me, the sounds or movements that they make will bother me to a much less degree, and in some cases, roll right off my shoulders! This sort of goes along with the tip to control your stress levels in order to increase your ability to cope. When I’m happy, relaxed, and laughing (especially), I feel much less vulnerable and more protected against triggers that usually crumble me if I’m in a crummy mood or even just having a typical day. Laughing after a misophonia episode can usually pull me out of the mental slump I’m left in after internally battling triggers too. I hope some of you can relate and find creative ways to add more joy and laughter to your life because I truly believe it decreases our anxiety and increases our resilience!

      #6872 Reply

        I’ve struggled with sounds since I was a little kid – I’m now 40. My parents described me as moody and bitchy child – I couldn’t tell them that the sounds of their eating and simple breathing were making me freakin’ insane! I hate squeaking, eating sounds, nose breathing/whistling, sounds of fabric rubbing, feet dragging, flip flops, shoe clicking and tapping, gum chewing, and on and on. I’m currently boycotting a certain grocery store because they won’t fix their squeaky front door (it’s REALLY loud and you can hear it throughout the entire store). I’ve complained about it and even wrote a note but they won’t fix it so I had to stop going there. It’s TORTURE to me. I get panicked when I’m trapped somewhere where I have to listen to torturous sounds – sweating, anger, rage and nauseousness. I feel like I’m going to explode with anxiety. Certain movements also drive me into a state of frenzy – feet rubbing together for instance – when someone has their feet (bare feet especially freak me out) on a coffee table and wont stop writhing and flexing and rubbing them together – UGH!!! The way some people hold their utensils when they eat drives me nuts. All of these things have ruined a lot of relationships for me because I just can’t stand to be in the same room with another person making noises. Somehow I’ve stayed married for 10 years but it’s been extremely rough on me. How I cope most days – there are these earplugs that are called Hearos (Walgreens or Amazon has them) that have been my savior. They’re sort of skin colored so not super noticeable. I cut them in half so I can stuff them in my ears without them sticking out. People never notice them and if they do they think it’s some medical reason – ear infection or something. I ALWAYS have earplugs in my pockets and almost always have to wear them when I’m in close proximity to other people. If I need them and have forgotten to put some in my pocket for the morning, it’s complete PANIC! At work I share an office with a fairly quiet person but I’ve picked up on all her little noises and they have slowly started to drive me crazy. To cope with that I have to wear headphones most of the time.
        My life is just a daily torture from sounds and annoying movements. Some days I wish I was deaf and blind just so I can get some peace for a change…

        #6880 Reply

          I heavily searched for noise cancelling headphones before I came to the conclusion that construction headphones were the best option for me. If I come into a scenario where I hear my trigger sound, babies crying, and I know I can’t get out I feel embarrassed because I know it looks silly but I put on the huge headphones. I honestly wish there was something more discreet that wouldn’t be so obvious. If anyone has any suggestions I would sincerely be appreciative of it!

          #6894 Reply

            I’ve had misophonia since I was 12. My 18YO son has it too. Things we’ve done for him include putting a sound-making device (white noise) in his room (he hates the sound of people walking down the hall – he thinks everyone is stomping, even if we are tippy-toeing). We also bought him a pair of Here One ear buds – which allow the addition of sound, rather than just trying to mask all sound, which just makes your ears try that much harder to hear things. So far, these have been the best thing for him – he wears them during class, and just having the white noise allows him to hear the teacher, while ignoring the gum chewers, pen clickers, foot tappers, etc. They are pretty pricey ($300), but you can manage the same effect with your phone, some earbuds, and a white-noise app.

            I do think the addition of sound is sometimes more helpful than trying to block out all sound.

            I also agree with Karen above, that when you are in a good mood, it’s easier to cope.

            #7034 Reply
            Deborah Thomas

              OMG. I can’t believe this horrible condition has aion has a name. I have been suffering from this problem since I was a little kid and it has caused me to go from job to job to job and fail at every one. I am a very hard worker with a good work ethic, but that makes no diference whatsoever with this problem, it is hell. I even tried suicide twice. There is no medication for it? I also have bipolar disorder, I’m pretty much a hermit, at 58.

              #7460 Reply
              Courtney Pace

                Obviously leaving the situation is the best bet, although lately I feel like the sounds follow me! I am sure this is in my head – my hearing can’t be that acute – but its so frustrating because it feels like there is no escape! I can put in ear plugs, wrap my head in a pillow, and then wrap it again in a blanket and STILL hear whatever it is. Playing music/video/white noise definitely helps mask the noise, but if I can still see the culprit then the background noise becomes insufficient. Mirroring the noise did help for a while, but I think the misophonia is getting more intense and even that doesn’t help anymore. Its become very visual too, the sight of chewing, swallowing, licking, rubbing (etc times a million) will throw me into such an uncontrollable rage. Even writing those trigger words has my blood boiling. I think its gotten worse since I’ve been pregnant (4mo), has anyone else noticed this? I am so terrified that I will find my baby’s noises this infuriating, or that I will pass on this horrible affliction to her…

                #7478 Reply

                  I have found the same thing. If my general mood is better, I can cope better. Social situations, even with several of my triggers, are fine if I am enjoying myself. My problem is when I’m stuck at home with my trigger sound(s) going on outside. Sometimes nothing I do can drown them out and I begin to panic.

                  #7634 Reply

                    I experience it really bad at work. I work with an older woman who constantly coughs (I counted 90 in one day) and sucks on hard candies with her mouth open all day. I went to HR and am able to wear headphones but it still doesnt help. When I feel like Im getting too angry, I step away from my desk and go to the bathroom for a while. I haven’t really found anything that really helps.

                    #8478 Reply

                      i just found this and its messing with my brain how much i picked up these habits without even knowing what i had. the sound that hurts the most is knuckles and the sounds people make with them, it use to be so bad saying the sound affect that comes with it like pop or anything close it would send me into an instant panic and cold fear would pretty much hollow me. ive gotten slightlt better with it by trying to block out any of the sounds by plugging my ears, tapping, humming, a tip i made was to tell myself what i was actually hearing was marker caps or a bottle being crushed, thatd help me feel a bit safer because i knew i wasnt getting hurt or about to be hurt i hope all of you who have this and suffer from it stay strong and we all can do this and stay tough!!!

                      #8652 Reply

                        I have discovered recently that making my own ‘swishing noises’ using my own saliva (sounds gross but don’t knock it until you try it) helps drown out the slightly less noisy triggers. If I make enough noise in my own mouth it can eliminate hearing a person eating nearby (not so good if crunchy rather than just chomping noises happening, but very useful technique if there is no alternative)

                        #8658 Reply

                          Best advice I can think of would be to become friendly with the individual(s) and make a joke out of it, ie. a pantomime boo usually works for me when someone is clicking constantly or talking with food in their mouth.

                          #8717 Reply
                          Someone in Pain

                            All of our issues are very real. From bass causing a headache in the back side of my head to hearing someone crunch chips or chomp on almonds leaving me with no other option except to cry because I feel so trapped and out of control -There is not much we can do about it. Not much at all. Even knowing that we aren’t the only ones with this condition don’t help that much. I’ve experienced this my entire life and known of misophonia for 4 years now. And I find myself looking for answers online when things get real bad.

                            My go-to for when I really am fed up with the sounds is PINK NOISE. I just google a pink noise video on YouTube when I have fast internet. And always make sure I have a pink noise mp3 file on my phone or at least a pink noise app that works offline with no issues.

                            Nothing else works as effectively as pink noise for me. It’s not ideal to listen to for the rest of your life, but it definitely reduces my anxiety.

                            Just hang in there. Those who truly love you will understand.

                            #8692 Reply

                              Janet -I just wanted to thank you for sharing that noises from outside your home trigger you. I feel like I’m crazy but my neighbor’s dog triggers me all the time. I get so panicked and then it turns to anger. I try music and deep breathing to stay calm but just reading your struggle and knowing I am not alone is comforting to me. Thank you.

                              #1008767 Reply

                                As I get older it gets more and more awful. It has come to the point where I can’t talk to my husband because i can hear the saliva in his mouth. Just thinking about it, triggers me. My life is so miserable.. I want long relaxing fun Sunday lunches and I cant eat near anyone. I think I might stab them. I can’t watch tv with people.. the sound of nose breathing, chest wheezing drives me into a panic. Its absolute agony for me and they think I’m stupid. Don’t they realise how difficult and unpleasant my life is.

                                #1008791 Reply

                                  My misophonia has gotten so bad the past three years, i’ve seen therapists, i’ve tried anxiety medication, i continually remove myself from situations, but nothing is making it better. I’m 18 years old and don’t know how much longer i can handle all these triggers that surround me and just never seem to stop. I feel so enraged with almost everything i hear, my family doesn’t understand and my doctor whom i’ve told about how i feel doesn’t bother to look into it. I wish there were support groups with people to talk to about it.

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