Misophonia & ASMR

Unsurprisingly, I had misophonia. It seems to go along with all my other neurological symptoms. But a large part of this may be psychological as well. I grew up with a mother with very few teeth, so all sorts of mouth sounds (chewing, lip smacking, teeth sucking noises) really REALLY bother me.

According to the mayo clinic, misophonia is simply a strong reaction to sounds. For me, it produces extreme anger. Like an urge to do something violent to the person making the noises. It makes sitting in quiet break rooms where coworkers are eating, absolutely miserable. So much so, that I’ve skipped lunch a few times and just sat outside somewhere that’s got background noise.

ASMR stands for Autonomous Sensory Meridian Response, which is described as a pleasant tingling sensation that begins at the scalp and moves downward.

Lucky me, I can also experience ASMR; not everyone can. For me it starts as a tingling sensation in my right leg and travels upward to my skull. From there is feels like tiny waves of tingling going from the base of my skull and fading away into the top of my skull. It’s very pleasant, very relaxing, and very enjoyable.

Recently my misophonia hasn’t been bothering me as significantly as it used to, and I think it’s because of ASMR videos I’ve been watching to relax. I started off watching role plays and gradually made my way into uncharted territory… mouth sounds and eating videos. I couldn’t listen at first, but slowly, I began to not hate it. Maybe because of how it was presented… Soft light and pastel lip gloss while a pretty girl makes kissing sounds on one side of the camera’s mic?

Just this morning I sat in a meeting where a coworker was eating a bagel. And I didn’t feel overcome with rage. There’s some science here that I haven’t quite figured out yet, but it’s good. It’s got something to do with nerves, I know  that much. I have what I think is a pinched nerve in my right leg (sciatica?) and that spot where I feel the most pain is where my tingling begins. Then it hits the nerves in the back of my head (where I get RFA treatments for occipital neuralgia) and ends at my eyes becoming very sleepy. It’s a pleasant experience, but I can’t be expected to get up and get things done after. Because I’m usually asleep on the couch.

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