Misophonia is a newly recognized disorder; the causes are unknown. With misophonia, your brain and nervous systems respond automatically and uncontrollably to “triggers” in certain situations, for instance, at meals with your family. It can affect people of any age but often begins during the preteen years and becomes problematic when you are a teenager or young adult. Misophonia can occur alone or with other medical or mental health problems. Some people cope well with their symptoms, which can range from mild to severe, while others are unable to spend time with their loved ones, work, or go to school.
Common repetitive sounds made by other people -- chewing, crunching, slurping, sniffing, or lip smacking, for example -- can be unbearable for people with misophonia. They may trigger a flight-or-fight response, feelings of panic, disgust, or anger. Left untreated, misophonia can make it hard to carry out activities of daily life and can lead to social isolation. Fortunately, Duke is a global leader in misophonia research and treatment. We use individualized, proven approaches to care so you can get back to enjoying life.
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As experts in misophonia research and treatment, Duke specialists have developed a questionnaire and interview guide for assessing misophonia symptoms and functional impairment. These tools are used by providers around the world to identify misophonia and recommend targeted treatment. There is still much to learn about the disorder, and currently there is no formal medical diagnosis.
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