Exploding Head Syndrome – Symptoms, Causes and Treatment

by on September 6th, 2013
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Exploding Head Syndrome sounds like a fatal occurrence that a person would only experience one time. Sounds can be deceiving, ask any one of the millions of people who suffer with this unusual disorder every night.

Symptoms of Exploding Head Syndrome

Exploding Head Syndrome, or EHS, only occurs during sleep. Those who suffer with this disorder will hear a very loud, abrupt sound that originates internally while they are asleep. The loud sound jars the person awake and has been likened unto a shotgun blast, cymbals clanging or a bomb exploding. The loud noise is not accompanied with pain or any other outward symptom. The person may have momentary shortness of breath or heavy breathing, but that’s due to the adrenaline rush caused by the fear of hearing the sudden, loud noise.

When no one else in the house hears the sound other than the sufferer, the person usually will continue to suffer in silence for fear of being stigmatized as ‘the one who hears noises’. A person who has EHS literally hears noises in their head, but they’re not crazy.

Causes of EHS

The exact cause of EHS is unknown. Some medical experts theorize that EHS is caused by an over-night shift within the middle ear. Other experts speculate that EHS is caused when the brain’s temporal lobe over-fires. The only common denominator among those who suffer with Exploding Head Syndrome is stress. Since most people are under some degree of stress, that finding leads the medical community back to square one when trying to discover the cause of EHS.

Treatments for Exploding Head Syndrome

Know that you are not crazy and you are far from being alone if you are hearing the sudden loud noises when you are asleep. The first course of action is to see your doctor.

True EHS is a benign illness which has no underlying cause, but only your doctor can determine that and may want to run a few tests to rule out any other possibilities.

Relaxation techniques to relieve stress are the advised treatment plan. Spending time relaxing prior to bedtime often eliminates the EHS episodes by relaxing the body and mind. Soaking in warm water and listening to soothing music before bedtime may help.

If relaxing techniques don’t work and the EHS occurrences persist, your doctor may prescribe an antidepressant medication.

Source: Exploding Head Syndrome


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