“A horrible, loud explosion woke me up last night and made me scream out a bit. It was really scary! What’s happening?“
As your body prepares to fall asleep and for a moment it seems that your ear-ringing has stopped – BANG! A deafening bomb just exploded near your ear. But you were the only one who heard it. How is that even possible and how does it affect your tinnitus?
The weird sounding syndrome that can drive you crazy
Experts call this unusual condition Exploding Head Syndrome (EHS). And while many tinnitus sufferers hide their symptoms from their doctor, afraid that they will be considered mentally ill, the Exploding Head Syndrome is very real and disturbing.
The good news is that, despite its grisly name, your head doesn’t really explode. As tinnitus expert Neil Bauman, Ph.D. explains: “You may experience a very loud and sudden noise such as a loud bang similar to a bomb exploding, a gun going off, a clash of cymbals, a door slamming, a roaring sound, waves crashing against rocks, loud voices or screams, a ringing noise, a terrific bang on a tin tray, the sound of electrical arcing (buzzing) or any other form of loud, indecipherable noise that seems to originate from inside your head.”
EHS most often occurs just before you enter deep sleep and wakes you up violently. It can certainly scare you and set your heart to pounding.
Researchers know little about this syndrome and It is not known how many people have EHS. But it appears that women are affected more than men. It can also begin at all ages – as early as 10 years. The average age when it first appears in 58 years. So, if you are over 50, you should pay attention to the causes, symptoms and treatments of this condition.
Are you prone to develop Exploding Head Syndrome? Here’s what you must know
The symptoms of exploding head syndrome vary from person to person. But the good news is that there’s usually little or no physical pain associated with the condition
A few sufferers hear the noise in only one ear, while others hear it in both ears. In other cases, the sound seems to come from inside the patient’s own head (thus the condition’s name).
These are the top causes which may lead a person to develop EHS:
- Anxiety, fatigue or constant stress
- Damage to the brain’s nerve cells
- Muscle jerk or twitch
- Damage to the temporal lobe
- Quick and sudden movement of the patient’s middle ear
Is there a cure for exploding head syndrome?
For many patients, the condition comes and goes. It can disappear for long stretches at a time, and even completely disappear by itself.
But if you struggle with EHS, these are some proven ways you can quickly prevent and reduce the occurrence of exploding head syndrome:
- Eat a healthy balanced diet. Studies show that when a person consumes a healthy and balanced diet, it will lead to having a healthy night’s sleep.
- There is no need to panic. The noises you hear are just in the mind.
- Take deep breaths whenever you are in panic mode. It helps you relax and loosen up a bit
- Try as much as possible to reduce stress: try yoga, read a book, take a brisk walk outside or catch-up on your favorite hobby.
Moreover, many sleep disturbances like EHS are related to the use of certain medications or drugs, according to the American Sleep Association. Consider a moderate use of these drugs if you want to alleviate the symptoms of EHS.