Misophonia explained as Seann Walsh announces condition

London, UK. 6 June 2022. Seann Walsh during a photocall for the launch of Backstage With Katherine Ryan, at BAFTA in Piccadilly, London. Picture date: Monday June 6, 2022. Photo credit should read: Matt Crossick/Empics/Alamy Live News

Seann Walsh is a sufferer of misophonia. (Matt Crossick/Empics/Alamy Live News

I’m a Celebrity… Get Me Out of Here! favourite Seann Walsh has revealed that he suffers from a condition known as ‘misophonia’ – but what exactly is it, and could you have it?

According to a Harvard Health blog entry published in 2019, this psychological scourge (which affects between 6% to 20% of the population) is simply the act of being triggered by other people’s natural noises, like breathing, crying, yawning and chewing.

Such is the disturbance on the mind, sufferers are put into “fight-or-flight” mode and feel like they need to escape.

Read more: I’m A Celebrity: Seann Walsh dubs Strictly kiss scandal “worst moment of his life”

The 37-year-old comedian, who became a dad for the first time back in February, told Tom Craine and Cimran Shah on the My Favourite Takeaway podcast that his variation is an “irrational hatred of the sound of people eating”.

Seann Walsh on stage during An Evening of Comedy for the Teenage Cancer Trust, at the Royal Albert Hall, London. Picture date: Tuesday March 21, 2023.

The comedian describes this condition as “a kind of irrational hatred of the sound of people eating”. (Getty)

“If we’re eating somewhere where the music is not on, I have to say, ‘Excuse me, sorry, could you put some music on please?’, which is a very strange request,” Walsh elaborated, before campaigning for the end of crisp and apple consumption on public transport.

“Obviously I’ve got views on this. Crisps should be banned on trains, apples banned on trains, mainly crunchy fruit. You can have a banana, you can probably have an orange.”

Further into clinical psychologist Dr. James Cartreine’s article, he wrote how misophonia can lead to “isolation” under extreme circumstances, with the disorder “seriously compromising functioning, socialising, and ultimately mental health”.

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Two years ago, a groundbreaking study at Newcastle University discovered that “increased connectivity in the brain between the auditory cortex and the motor control areas related to the face, mouth and throat” is a key cause of the condition itself.

Dr. Sukhbinder Kumar stated: “This lead us to believe that this communication activates something called the ‘mirror system’, which helps us process movements made by other individuals by activating our own brain in a similar way – as if we were making that movement ourselves.

“We think that in people with misophonia involuntary overactivation of the mirror system leads to some kind of sense that sounds made by other people are intruding into their bodies, outside of their control.”

Quite amazingly, individuals may reduce their symptoms by mimicking the original trigger sound, effectively restoring a sense of control.

Watch: Matt Hancock accidentally spits on campmate Seann Walsh before Bushtucker Trial

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