Stephen Geller Katz LCSW-R
Misophonia Cognitive Retraining Therapy
Misophonia Cognitive Retraining Therapy
|Moderate to severe anxiety triggered by chewing sounds, including:|
You may also be affected by visual stimuli, such as repetitive foot or body movements, fidgeting or movement you observe out of the corners of their eyes. Intense anxiety, rage and avoidant behavior may develop as a result of misophonia.
* Do you feel your family and friends don’t understand how much you suffer?
* Do you often feel you can just suffer through a social event where there is eating present only to find that you must “escape” before you have a panic attack?
* Do you find that some people are at first understanding and make some efforts not to make the triggering sounds in front of you, but soon forget and constantly have to be reminded, causing you to feel angry, anxious and depressed?
* Are you avoiding social activities that you enjoy because of the misophonia?
* Are you fearful of losing your job and/or is the misophonia effecting your job performance?
You may be a candidate for Misophonia Cognitive Retraining Therapy, or MCRT.
Stephen Geller Katz, LCSW-R, with over 20 years of clinical experience, a New York University graduate, developed Misophonia Cognitive Retraining Therapy and founded Misophonia Cognitive Center in response to the growing number of people with Misophonia coming to his private practice from audiologists and ENTs. He discovered that by helping people to retrain and reinterpret the thoughts around their Misophonia, anxiety and depression symptoms began to improve. But even more important so did the Misophonic trigger response.
Misophonia is one of those annoying conditions that we still don’t know how to cure completely, leaving its sufferers with the sole option of exploring coping mechanisms to help themselves in their daily lives. The challenges presented by a harsher variant of misophonia can be severe and can make everyday life quite complicated for some, especially those who are forced to work in loud, noisy environments. Knowing how to manage the condition is critical if you want to avoid slowly going mad over time.
Everyone who suffers from misophonia tends to be affected by a set of specific irritants that provoke the condition, while other sounds may have absolutely no harmful effect, including some that most people find annoying in general. The first step in coping with misophonia is to identify what exactly triggers it in you, and to find out how severe each of those irritants are. Having a specific list of factors that you need to avoid can go a long way towards helping you adapt to the condition in your daily life.
The next step is to act on those triggers and alter your environment as much as you can to remove them. Earphones with good noise cancellation properties are a common solution among many misophonia sufferers, but unfortunately that might not be an option for everyone. For example, those who have to work in hazardous environments and need to stay alert will find that to be an unsuitable approach. If modifying your environment to make it more suitable for your condition is not an option, look into replacing that environment completely. In the long run, your health is what matters the most.
Trying to find a solution to a severe case of misophonia on your own can feel like you’re banging your head against a solid wall day after day. Not many medical professionals are sufficiently familiar with the condition and would be able to help you with it, and there are also some divided opinions in the field regarding how to properly diagnose and treat misophonia.
It’s good to see that more people – including medical specialists – are starting to pay attention to misophonia, as the number of people who appear to be suffering from the condition seems to be quite large at this point. It’s a relatively new entry in the world of medicine, and while it’s still confusing to some physicians, others have started to treat it with a much more serious attitude and have established standardized diagnosis procedures to help people deal with their misophonia.
The most important thing when dealing with misophonia is to be aware of what exactly triggers the condition in you, and how frequently this typically happens in your daily life. Going to a doctor won’t help you much when all you can say is “certain sounds make me feel discomfort”, so you’ll need to be able to specify exactly what those sounds are and what circumstances you typically hear them in. With a well-tracked history, a physician should have a much easier time pinpointing misophonia as your exact specific problem.
Likewise, make sure that you’re aware of how your body reacts to those triggers, including any differences in your response to specific irritants (or groups of irritants). If you feel pressure in your chest or a tightness in your muscles all over the body, this could be a sign that you’re dealing with misophonia. Make sure that your list makes it clear which response is linked to which trigger, as otherwise you won’t be of much help to the doctor trying to assist you. If you have a history of blood pressure issues, make sure to make a note of that as well, as it might help exclude certain conditions in the diagnosis procedure.
This might sound like redundant advice, but when dealing with misophonia, it’s more important than you might think. You need to know that the physician you’re working with actually has enough experience in dealing with misophonia, and that they’re more familiar with the condition than the average practitioner in your region. Not many doctors are experienced with misophonia yet, so your choice here will matter more than you think.
As medical science is still trying to understand misophonia and its intricate mechanisms, we’re starting to observe some interesting links between it and other, more commonly reported and “popular” conditions that medicine has been dealing with for a longer period. Autism has been frequently popping up on the radar in this context recently, and it looks like a lot of attention is currently focused on investigating a potential link between the two.
One of the factors that have prompted this is an apparent increase in the frequency of cases where the two conditions are reported together. It’s indeed not rare for parents dealing with autistic children to describe them as being easily irritated by specific sounds, often to the extent that the situation provokes a physical response. However, it’s worth noting that the two are reported separately in many cases, rather than describing misophonia as just another symptom of autism, which has contributed to the perceived potential link between them.
This has also prompted some to investigate whether misophonia could be a subclass of autism with a milder set of symptoms. While it’s understood that autism is not a “black and white” condition – like most issues in the psychological world – the exact line where it becomes an agitated response to certain factors remains somewhat unclear. Some specialists seem convinced that the two conditions are one and the same and that misophonia is simply more specialized and tightly focused, but that remains nothing more than a hypothesis at this stage.
More research is necessary before any conclusions can be drawn. And due to the limited number of patients reporting misophonia and having the will to actually deal with it, progress has been relatively slow. To physicians, every point of contact counts and matters a lot, and the increased interest and attention towards misophonia is a good thing with regards to the future of our research into it.
Misophonia and OCD are two conditions that only recently have started to receive proper attention in medical circles. Misophonia, in particular, still has a long way to go before everyone has proper access to the kinds of treatment procedures they may need to deal with the condition properly. On the bright side, the increased attention in recent times has resulted in many new discoveries floating up to the surface, including new potential links between misophonia and conditions like OCD.
Both misophonia and OCD boil down to the same essential set of points: a person gets triggered by a certain irritant, causing an involuntary response by their body that typically manifests itself as a feeling of discomfort, or even a physical urge to react. Both conditions can also trigger physical sensations in the body as well, such as an increased heartrate when the trigger isn’t properly addressed, although the exact mechanism through which this occurs remains largely unknown, and it’s therefore difficult to draw a concrete conclusion on a possible link in this regard.
People who deal with misophonia usually find that they develop a similar set of coping mechanisms to address the condition as do those with OCD – the only real difference is the context in which those mechanisms are applied. Since misophonia is a more isolated condition specifically related to responding to unpleasant sounds, dealing with its related irritants is usually as simple as getting a pair of noise-cancelling headphones and sticking to environments that are known to be free of triggers.
Despite the similarities between the two, there are also some inherent differences that have to be carefully observed by an individual attempting to diagnose themselves. The most important point to consider is that the two conditions are diagnosed in very different ways and require the attention of different specialists. If you suspect that you might be dealing with misophonia, you’ll need to consult a physician that has specific experience in that area.
Finding one that you can trust can be a bit tricky due to the relatively unpopular status of the condition at the moment.
Paying attention to how your body responds to certain irritants and things you perceive as triggering is important if you want to figure out whether you’re really dealing with misophonia or a different condition. The list of symptoms typically associated with misophonia includes not only a sense of irritation – which is the most commonly reported issue – but also an array of additional, more physical symptoms. These can vary from person to person but knowing what the typical list looks like can make it easier to identify the condition in your own body.
You might feel like your body is getting squeezed in certain points when you get your misophonia triggered. The chest is the most commonly reported area, although you might also feel like some of your limbs are getting clamped down on. The pressure may or may not increase with each triggering incident, although those who do experience this particular symptom usually report that it’s present during most attacks.
Your muscles might also feel tight all over the body all of a sudden, especially in the limbs. This is usually accompanied by the aforementioned sensation of pressure, but the two might come separately during different incidents of misophonia attacks. The feeling of tightness can be particularly troubling to some sufferers of the condition, as it can interfere with their daily lives and can make it difficult to go about their tasks while the attack is ongoing. Learning to manage these sensations is a good step towards treating misophonia and identifying the triggers for the condition can make that significantly easier, as you’ll know when to expect an attack coming on.
Blood pressure, and issues with the cardiovascular system as a whole, is something else to pay attention to when trying to diagnose misophonia. Many people report an increase in their blood pressure during an attack, and it may be accompanied by a rapidly beating heart and a general sensation of discomfort and unease.
These are just some of the most commonly reported physical symptoms associated with misophonia. The condition can manifest itself in many different forms among people with varying backgrounds, and it’s important to get professional help if you’re not sure what you’re dealing with exactly.
If you’re trying to do some self-evaluation to figure out whether you might be dealing with misophonia, one of the best starting points are the kinds of sounds that you perceive as annoying – or triggering. Making a list is a good idea, as this kind of analysis is usually prone to being influenced by your own perception, so you’ll need to be sure exactly what kinds of sounds are truly annoying to you, and which ones are merely single incidents that can be safely ignored. Here’s a list of the sounds that misophonia patients have reported most often.
By far the most popular category are sounds that other people make, especially with their mouths. Chewing, swallowing, crunching something with one’s teeth – these are all common examples that frequently get reported. Even talking can sometimes be irritating when the talker has a specific tone of voice, or, related to the above, if they talk while eating. While many people find that at least mildly unpleasant, misophonia sufferers get significantly more irritated from such annoyances.
Sounds related to food and eating are also commonly present in these lists, even when they aren’t produced by other people specifically. For example, the classic noisy, crunchy sound of opening a bag of chips can drive some people borderline insane, especially if it’s prolonged by the person attempting to conceal their actions in a quiet environment. The clinking of glasses during a toast can also be a common irritator, making social gatherings particularly unpleasant for some sufferers when combined with the general noise and rattling associated with them.
Staying at home and trying to immerse yourself in a quiet environment usually allows you to focus on the tiny everyday sounds associated with living in a house or apartment. Air filters, doors slamming and squeaking, the creaking of the walls, that fire alarm chirping because its battery is low – even one of those can often be enough to provoke a serious reaction in a person dealing with misophonia but combining several can make the situation a complete nightmare for that person.
Feel like dealing with this on your own is too much? If you want some professional guidance through the process of identifying misophonia and dealing with it in your daily life, you should contact us for an appointment today. You can hardly do better than the best misophonia specialists in NYC, after all.
Once a person has identified that they are suffering from misophonia, seeking treatment usually doesn’t take too long to follow through. It’s one of the more annoying and unpleasant conditions a person can live with on a daily basis, and in some cases, individuals have described it as unbearable. There is no solid treatment route that’s guaranteed to get rid of the condition in every person, and in fact, resolving it for good is a tricky task. A large part of misophonia treatment procedures focus on addressing the symptoms and helping the patient live their lives normally despite the condition.
Misophonia is usually triggered by different events in people that suffer from it, and there is no standard list of irritating factors that could lead to an unpleasant sensation. In some cases, the patient may even be unaware of the majority of factors that contribute to the condition, making it important to pay attention to one’s daily health and wellbeing. It can often be helpful to keep a diary or some other type of log that tracks your daily life, pointing out the specific moments when your misophonia was triggered.
Once you know what types of sounds affect your condition and make things worse, the next step most people take is to block them out and give themselves some peace during the important hours of the day. Noise cancelling headphones can help a lot, although care must be taken to stay alert about your surroundings with the headphones on, in order to prevent an incident from occurring due to your inattentive status. In addition, high-end headphones can also predispose towards listening to music at dangerous volume levels, which can further contribute to harmful conditions in the future.
It’s also important to reach out for proper help once you’ve identified the condition and have tried some simple remedies. Modern medicine can do a lot to help you manage the pain and get on with your daily life with a minimal level of interference – but it’s still up to you to take the first step and seek out professional help.
If you’re in need of assistance with your misophonia and want to ensure that you’ll be treated by the best specialists in NYC, give us a call and we’ll set up an appointment to figure out the best possible course of treatment for your specific circumstances.
As more and more people are turning their attention to misophonia – including healthcare professionals, thankfully – you may be wondering if there might be something inside your head as well. The nature of the condition can make it difficult to self-diagnose in many cases, and it’s always preferred to get the opinion of a specialist if you’re not sure whether you might have it or not, but there are still some signs you can use to get a pretty good idea of what your current status is. There is a set of symptoms commonly associated with misophonia that tend to manifest themselves in most people who suffer from the condition.
Misophonia is typically linked to the presence of certain sounds in the environment, but only those. You may not get any negative response from sounds that drive others crazy, and vice versa. It’s important to make a list of specific sounds that seem to annoy you if you’re starting to suspect that you might have misophonia, in order to identify whether there’s a pattern or not. In some cases, you might simply find out that you’ve been getting triggered by a small set of sounds that everyone finds unpleasant, having nothing to do with misophonia.
Most people who suffer from misophonia describe their conditions as going above and beyond simple discomfort. Many people claim that the sensation is annoying enough to make them actually angry, and there have been reports of people lashing out after being provoked by their corresponding personal triggers. If your annoyance frequently develops into something much more significant and you find it hard to control those emotions, this might be a good sign that you’re indeed dealing with misophonia. That’s even more certain if you find yourself considering physical responses – or even acting on them.
Misophonia can make you associate some environments with unpleasant feelings, and it might even be difficult to figure out that these environments are the problem until you realize that they are saturated with the kinds of sounds that trigger your condition.
If you’re not sure whether it’s misophonia you’re dealing with or a simple minor annoyance, you should get in touch with us and set up an appointment with the leading misophonia specialists in NYC. Don’t put this off until it’s too late, it will be much more difficult to deal with the problem later on.
Dealing with issues related to sound sensitivity is never fun, especially if it’s a persistent problem that manifests itself on a regular basis and is triggered by a variety of factors in your daily life. For some people, living with a condition like this can be downright dangerous due to the circumstances in which they are triggered, making it especially important to explore different coping mechanisms early on. It doesn’t matter if you’re dealing with tinnitus, misophonia or something else – you have a lot of potential control over the situation, and you must make use of it.
If you can wear earplugs in environments that regularly trigger your irritations, it’s probably best to get used to doing that from as early as possible. Noise-cancelling headphones are another good option commonly used by people dealing with misophonia, although be careful that you don’t push things in the other direction – it can be easy to get carried away with a pair of powerful headphones and adding tinnitus on top of your pre-existing conditions is the last thing you want to do.
If you’re dealing with something like misophonia, it can severely affect your relationships with others, especially if you have a stronger case of the condition that results in greater irritation and even potential physical outbursts. Not everyone understands what misophonia is, and the same goes for all related conditions that many people around us suffer from on a daily basis. Take your time to explain what you’re feeling to the people in your life so that they can be more understanding. Maybe someone will disagree and claim that you’re faking it, but that will only reveal things about that person that you were not aware of before.
If you want to maximize your chances of treating the condition successfully and bringing some peace back into your daily life, you have to get the problem addressed with the help of medical professionals as early as possible. Misophonia can quickly become much more problematic than it initially is, and delaying your treatment is one of the worst things you could do.
We understand how you feel and can connect you with the most respected misophonia experts in NYC, giving you a proper boost in dealing with the condition properly. Give us a call at 646-585-2251 and find out what we can do for you today!
Hearing is perhaps the sense that people mistreat the most throughout their lives, especially in their earlier years. Going to loud concerts without earplugs, listening to music at high volumes through in-ear earphones, and various other things that we pay little thought to can come back in a very frightening way in the future. Misophonia is a troubling hearing condition that affects a person’s daily life, causing significant discomfort – and in some cases even distress – when certain specific sounds can be heard in the vicinity.
The main symptom of misophonia and the one people typically associate with the condition the most, is a general sense of extreme discomfort when a specific sound is heard. Different people respond to different sounds, and there doesn’t seem to be a common theme in what could trigger the condition. It’s also possible that the spectrum of harmful sounds can change over time, although reports on that seem to be somewhat conflicting at the moment.
The exact mechanism behind the development of misophonia is still largely unknown, and the main hypothesis right now is that it has something to do with a malfunction in the nervous system. In that sense, misophonia appears to be a neurological disorder rather than a physical one related to the condition and healthiness of the ears. No concrete link has been established so far between a lifestyle that protects a person’s ears against hearing damage and the development of misophonia, although it certainly can’t hurt to ensure that the ears are treated with enough care and attention.
Medical science is still dealing with the problems caused by misophonia in somewhat experimental ways, although there are certain management courses established so far that seem to be showing good prospects. Treatment mostly boils down to learning how to cope with the situation and how to isolate the specific sounds that trigger it, although due to the way this therapy typically works, it’s not recommended to attempt it on one’s own. Professional assistance is strongly recommended to maximize the chances of seeing good results.
If you’re suffering from misophonia – or believe you may be – and are not sure what to do, don’t postpone treatment any further. Get in touch with us today and set up an appointment with the best misophonia specialists in NYC, and you’ll feel the difference in the quality of your daily life in no time!