Skip to main content Skip to bottom nav

Loud sneezing or making sounds while eating makes me go mad. What to do in such situations without making anyone feel embarrassed?

111 Answers
Last Updated: 03/24/2022 at 12:09am
1 Tip to Feel Better
United States
Moderated by

Jennifer Fritz, LMSW, PhD

Clinical Social Work/Therapist

Day to day life can be stressful and overwhelming and my strength is assisting my clients in a supportive, empowering and practical manner.

Top Rated Answers
YourCanadianFriendEm
April 15th, 2017 9:29pm
Bite your tongue. Keep your opinions to yourself. If it's that bad I'd suggest putting in your earphones and listening to some music, maybe turn on the tv, move away from the person, etc. Remember that the more you focus on the sounds the louder they become. Do the opposite and focus on something else and as time goes on you'll get better at this and it'll come naturally.
RainbowTrie
May 11th, 2017 1:02pm
I understand how you feel. I have hypersensitive hearing and I need to use earplugs often. If asked, I either tell them the truth or that I have a migraine. You could also put in earbuds and play some nice music to drown out the chewing sounds. I hope that is helpful.
Anonymous
June 1st, 2017 6:35pm
If you can, leave the situation. If leaving isn't an option, work on techniques to calm yourself down; such as blasting music in your ears, or some other focusing method. People can't always choose the mannerisms they have, especially when it comes to sneezing/eating noisy food, so all we can do is calm ourselves.
Anonymous
July 7th, 2017 9:59am
When I have a pet peeve, or get annoyed because of someone's manners it can help to take a moment to get out of the situation or distract yourself by talking to someone else at the table. Of course you can always politely ask, depending on your relation to that person, to please be quiet for a moment.
Anonymous
August 10th, 2017 6:38pm
If you've ever been tempted to confront someone slurping their soup in a restaurant, or if a person breathing loudly next to you in the movie theater is enough to make your blood boil, then you're not alone: You're one of many people suffering from a genuine brain abnormality called misophonia. http://time.com/4659308/misophonia-noisy-eating-science/
Anonymous
August 11th, 2017 5:16am
Try to focus on something else when the person is eating. Focus on other sounds and try to block out the others. With the loud sneezing you have to remember we can't control how we sneeze.
soothingStrawberry61
October 19th, 2017 2:13pm
Unfortunately there is nothing you can do but remove yourself from the situation. Avoid times where people would be eating in quiet places. If you have to go somewhere quiet where people may be eating bring headphones and listen to music. Anything you say to someone is going to come off wrong. Best of luck to you.
PastelRhian
November 27th, 2017 2:40am
If you're around people eating loudly, move to a quieter area or put earphones in to drown out the sound.
Cryptidchild
November 29th, 2017 2:28pm
Close your eyes and count to 20. Focus on the numbers and not sounds. If 20 is not enough go for more or start from 0 to 20 again until it works.
Anonymous
November 30th, 2017 11:42am
Tell them that you need to pee and get out of there. Just make excuses and leave. Or listen to music while eating or secretly put something in your ear. Always avoid sitting next to the people you know sneeze loudly or eat with noise.
trin22
December 1st, 2017 3:02pm
As somebody who personally struggles with this, i can say that a few things that have helped me are to do things like excusing yourself from that type of situation if possible, just to calm down and be prepared to deal with things. Also, doing things like starting conversations can help distract you from focusing on the sounds that are making oyu uncomfortable.
AnnieQuill
January 17th, 2018 9:28pm
Breathe slowly, keep your body language relaxed, and try to ignore it. If it's someone you know well, and are around often, at a time where you are not eating, talk to them about your feelings on the matter and try to come to a solution to use during such moments. If someone is sneezing, just say bless you or some other such mannerism, and move on. Unfortunately, there isn't really much you can do about sneezing but grin and bear it.
Kalopsia17
January 28th, 2018 6:00pm
Maybe this seems too much of a desensitisation to go through. But read about how these sounds are produced and try understanding the procedure. Our brain tends to ignore whatever we already know and pushes it to the subconscious thereby letting you not pay a lot of attention to those sounds. Listen to those sounds often. This is only a perspective. If you feel like this interrupts your daily activity kindly try approching for help through counselling or therapy.
Anonymous
February 9th, 2018 3:43pm
If it makes you go mad... Maybe you should remove yourself from the situation if you can? This way you remove yourself from your major irritation whilst avoiding making anyone feel embarrassed
DylanSDB
February 9th, 2018 7:21pm
If the situation calls for it, move away from the person or finish your meal quickly. Sometimes it helps to move away from the situation briefly to take a breathe and calm down.
Anonymous
February 21st, 2018 1:53pm
My advice would be to block the noise out and focus on something else but if you can't, then try to either tell the person to be a little quieter in a polite way (not in front of everyone) or to excuse yourself from the situation
CallMeAnon
March 1st, 2018 2:13pm
You can kindly notify them on their loud sounds. or if you cant do that maybe try and relocate yourself so that you arent as close to the source of your annoyance
Anonymous
March 9th, 2018 12:31pm
just keep it in... if you want very politely tell them that its bad table manners... and just keep it in
avaryteal01
April 5th, 2018 8:02am
Maybe excuse yourself from the table and ask to speak with them. If not then try your best to calm down and except that they can’t help it.
Caringheart23
April 6th, 2018 8:07pm
Finally someone like me! 😁 I hate when someone make sounds while eating. I didn't come up with any strategy how to tell strangers yet, then means I have to suffer 😅 but when it comes to my family and friends I've learnt that he best way is to be open. Just tell them it makes you go crazy and ask them to eat more quiet. It become a real fun for my friends and me while eating. I'm sure if you politely ask them,they'll understand 😉
Ebonyroseofficial
April 11th, 2018 9:24pm
You should never keep it bottled up and simply explain, in the nicest way possible, that it’s not their fault you just would prefer if they cover their mouth when making noises while eating.
HopefulComfort16
May 2nd, 2018 7:02pm
you could try deep breathing excercises and try to distract yourself from the frustration and annoyance you are feeling. If it is really hard for you to concentrate on something else, you can always excuse yourself and leave the situation for a minute to calm down.
RedVase1234
June 2nd, 2018 1:33am
I politely try to engage the person in conversation, and ask open-ended questions during the meal. While they are busy talking, I politely but quickly attempt to finish the bulk of my meal while they talk.
Eshanmutharasi
June 8th, 2018 7:56am
Tolerance.Accepting the fellow human as they are.since man is a social animal,we need tolerance to flow in the rhythm of life
Anonymous
June 13th, 2018 10:07am
I found out I had misaphonia 2 years ago. I don’t just get annoyed when someone eats loudly or repeatedly clicks on something- I get enraged! My heart starts beating fast and I feel like my body is on fight or flight mode. For me noise cancelling headphones have been a god sent. I just bring them with me everywhere.
LovingDog13
June 27th, 2018 9:44pm
Ask that person to turn away or stop politely. Many people don’t realize when they are doing something irritation, so politely asking them to stop is a good start
Anonymous
June 30th, 2018 9:14am
Think in your head "ugh that's really dumb but I can handle this!" - really helps to reduce one's anger
Anonymous
June 30th, 2018 6:54pm
I try to talk to the people affected and tell them about it. Normally they will understand and you won´t be embarrassed.
Anonymous
July 18th, 2018 10:04pm
Perhaps consider a new environment without those triggers. If the environment cannot be avoided, perhaps taking a break from the environment if your emotions feel out of control is another option.
Tvmv29
July 27th, 2018 3:16pm
I don't know about the first but with the second one: just talk to the person. Say how you feel about that and I'm sure the person will understand. If the person knows that it isn't about them but in general I don't think they will be embrassed
Considering Therapy?
Connect with an expert therapist about social anxiety