Ruth Langsford is nothing if not relatable. Like a lot of us, the sound of chewing (namely, that of husband Eamonn Holmes) sends her crazy, but Ruth has a particular disorder that means she gets a lot more irritated by certain sounds – not just eating loudly. It’s called misophonia, and Ruth has previously spoken out about it on several episodes of This Morning.
As Eamonn Holmes took a call from a viewer describing how the police were required to get involved as a fight broke out with partner over loud chewing, Ruth said she more than sympathised.
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“I can understand that, I can understand that with my misphonia,” she explained.
She’s even admitted that Eamonn’s breathing can get to her at times.
“Even to the point of me breathing, you wouldn’t like,” Eamonn said.
Ruth replied: “Well if you’re too close to me and you’re breathing… If you’re giving me a cuddle, which is lovely…"
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Ruth Langsford and Eamonn Holmes married in June 2010
“If someone’s breathing heavily near me – I think what happens is I tune in. Certain noises – if someone was clicking a pen over there, everything else around me becomes kind of dulled and all I can hear is that. Even if it’s a stranger, sometimes I have to go: ‘Excuse me, can you stop that?’ And then I blurt it out and I’m really embarrassed.”
Misophonia is indeed a clinical diagnosis and doesn’t have a cure, meaning while there is certain treatment to help Ruth soothe her symptoms, she’ll have it for life. We caught up with Dr Chris George to explain more.
What is misophonia?
“It’s a condition in which individuals experience intense anger and disgust when they are confronted with sounds made by other human beings,” he said. “For example, sounds such as chewing, breathing and lip smacking may trigger intense anger.”
What are the symptoms of misophonia?
Dr Chris added that irritation is the main one, then sometimes turning into disgust, anger, becoming verbally abusive, or sometimes even physically abusive to the person making the noise.
Is misophonia curable?
Dr Chris confirms that misophonia is a “lifelong condition” with no cure.
How can misophonia be treated?
According to Dr Chris, CBT (cognitive behavioural therapy in which your brain is rewired to perceive the noises being made in a different way i.e. not as something irritating) and counselling are both good forms of treatment. The goal is to reframe your way of thinking about said noises – they’re not annoying, they’re simply inevitable.
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