Gum chewing, nose sniffing, throat clearing, pen clicking. finger tapping… and fingers pointing, legs swinging… For the vast majority of people, these particular sounds and visuals are barely noticed and seem to be nothing more than aspects of the background. For a small discrete population, these sounds and visuals trigger severe and immediate rage and set off a physiological urgency for flight.
The "Sound-Rage" disorder is not a result of auditory dysfunction and is not a hearing problem. It differs from all other known disorders in that the autonomic response to perceived threat is anger rather than fear.
The processing of information takes place at many stops along the route from someone sniffing to a sufferer storming out of the room. In the brain, there are neural pathways taken between different cortical regions where each cortical region may contribute to the evaluation of the stimulus or the evaluation of the necessary response.
How does the dysfunction come about? Which brain parts interpret the sound? At what juncture does a sound go from ambiguous to “danger!” and” pain!” ? Do sounds and visual triggers change? How do thoughts and emotions have an impact? What therapies are effective?
The book attempts to answer these questions and more. It provides detailed information that a fundamental change in the brain leads to an auditory trigger assessed by the brain as something other than simply a chewing sound. The author provides compelling evidence that the brain interprets the sound as “danger!” because the sound is assessed as affective, valenced [non-sensational] “pain!”
This website provides information about the disorder and describes the research of the primer. The book is available online from amazon.com. click here.
To listen to the Radio Health Journal podcast on misophonia, click here.
On July 8th, 2013, a group of people who suffer from misophonia, self-identified as a “group of amateur researchers,” compiled a survey of just over 120 questions with the hope of generating a data base of information. The survey, administered on the Lime Survey platform, was online for one month and addressed demographic information, information questions about the disorder, and a host of assorted medical and lifestyle questions.A twenty page descriptive statistics analysis of the dataset is available in pdf.format and presents an Introduction, Sample Demographics, Misophonia Characteristics, Treatment, and Summary. Please go to the contact page and request the Descriptive Statistics PDF.
Some findings to consider:
Sound-Rage. A Primer of the Neurobiology and Psychology of a Little Known Anger Disorder is neither a diagnostic tool nor a medical text and is not intended to replace or modify therapy or the diagnostic and medical advice of a licensed practitioner.
photo credit: Image courtesy of renjith krishnan and Victor Habbick at FreeDigitalPhotos.net
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