A police officer was called to a fight between two flatmates that started because one of them was chewing their food “too loudly”.

Taking to Twitter, Inspector Darren Taylor shared the bizarre incident with his followers, reminding us how easy it is to snap when someone gets on our nerves.

He wrote: “Team attended a somewhat tense situation yesterday in BHill as two tenants in shared accommodation were reported to be fighting each other…due to one of them eating their food too loudly?

“After separating them, neither wanted to make any allegations apart from the food issue.”

Now, attacking someone because they were eating too loudly might sound a bit OTT, but a medical disorder called misophonia explains why, for some people, the noise is simply unbearable.

Sufferers of misophonia have, among other things, a hatred of loud chewing and loud breathing.

The brain disorder was first recognised back in 2001, but it took some time before scientists were convinced that it was a genuine medical condition.

Research published in the journal Current Biology found that those who suffer from misophonia have a change in brain activity when exposed to ‘trigger’ sounds.

Due to an irregularity in their brain’s emotional control mechanism, those who have the condition are hypersensitive to sounds such as loud eating.

In some cases, sufferers can experience an increased heart rate and sweating.

In a statement, Tim Griffiths, Professor of Cognitive Neurology at Newcastle University and UCL said: “I hope this will reassure sufferers,

“I was part of the sceptical community myself until we saw patients in the clinic and understood how strikingly similar the features are.”

Dr Sukhbinder Kumar, from the Institute of Neuroscience at Newcastle University and the Wellcome Centre for Neuroimaging at University College London, added:”For many people with misophonia, this will come as welcome news as for the first time we have demonstrated a difference in brain structure and function in sufferers,

“This study demonstrates the critical brain changes as further evidence to convince a sceptical medical community that this is a genuine disorder.”

Derrol Murphy, a graphic designer from San Diego, has been living with misophonia for most of his life.

Talking about his experience, he said: “I thought I was crazy for many years. Little noises would make me just fly into a rage.

“People don’t understand it and I can’t explain it. It’s affected relationships, especially people I’ve been dating and family members because you take it out on the people closest to you because you think they should understand.

“I’m not an aggressive person, noises just anger me. I’ve had to walk out on dates if they are chewing really loudly, my face gives it away – I pull a look of disgust I can’t hide.”

Does this sound like you or someone you know?