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Snap, Crackle and Pop in my Head
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Snap, Crackle and Pop in my Head

I'm a 26 year old male and it seems when I am hungry, I get a noise in my head that sounds like a crackling or sand falling in an hourglass. It only occurs when I know I need to eat. It happens for 3 to 4 seconds at a time, once every 10 seconds or so. I have no pain, but I do feel an uneasiness until I eat something.

My wife says she gets it too and she can hear when my head does it. Any ideas would be welcome. I have been reading the forums and can't find anything exactly like I have, but some similarities.

Thanks
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34 Comments Post a Comment
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387767_tn?1345875627
You are young, but I get that kind of noise from my neck because I have arthritis and some herniated disks.  I don't get the connection to hunger though.  Maybe you are just getting a headache from lack of food?
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Avatar_n_tn
I have been searching this forum as I have the same symptoms. I'm so glad that I'm not the only one!! The rice krispies sound started a little over a year ago, and I also have it when my stomach growls, usually when I am laying in bed. The past couple of weeks I have been experiencing a similar sound when I walk, and it has me really worried now.
Does anyone else know what this might be?!
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Avatar_n_tn
I have had the exact symptoms for over a year, along with some neck popping, and constant audible head throbbing.  I have had a CT and an MRI, and nothing was found, to explain these bothersome symptoms.  If you find out a diagnosis for yours,  please post! Thanks a lot!  
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Avatar_n_tn
yep I have the exact same thing I have had it most of my life I am 24 now and I don't have any real health issues. I have never really thought it was bad, it only happens when I have nothing on my stomach. It sounds like a 4th of july sparkler going up and down my neck to my head some times it will do it 2 or 3 times in a row if I'm really hungry. It never hurts, it's just so unusual, I would love some answers but I have yet to find any...any ideas any body?
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Avatar_n_tn
i get in too, crackling ,like frying a egg ,at night stomach can growl and it shoots up to the neck. had 24 hr ph negative for acid problem scope done nothing, can this be a nerve problem, 2 yrs now driving me nuts walking can hear it sometimes
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Avatar_n_tn
I have the same problem.  I have searched the internet trying to find the answers but nothing.  I have had it for 8 years and it began after I had my first child.  I get it when I am hungry its almos as though my stomach and my head go are in unison because my stomach will sometimes growl when my head is making the noises.  I havent been to the doctor but wonder if its the adrenal gland.  Just a thought.
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Avatar_n_tn
I'm so glad to have found you all! I've always wondered what that noise is but I don't mention it to doctors because they think I'm crazy. I'm 33 now and it started in my teens. I mentioned it once to a neurologist and he ordered an mri of my neck - which I knew would be fine. They don't seem to understand. It sounds just like rice krispies crackling and you can kind of feel it - it seems like it's coming from the back of your neck. It doesn't hurt, it's just odd. Almost electric-like. It's almost always when you're hungry. I've been wondering lately if it's related to the vagus nerve.

Just fyi - we'll see if any of us have the same other medical problems - I have fibromyalgia, pvc's, pcos, and possibly ms (they can't decide).
Thanks!
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Avatar_n_tn
I have the same exact thing! As far as I can remember, it has happened by whole life, at least since I was in middle school when I first noticed it. It is most pronounced when I first wake up in the morning and am laying in bed, before breakfast. Each wave of hunger is accompanied by the feeling and sound of crackling in my neck/head.
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712718_tn?1230554474
Okay, I may have a diagnosis for you all.  I started getting the sand falling/sparkler sound in the back of my head about 7-8 months ago.  During that same time I was also diagnosed with Lyme Disease.  While the sound doesn't bother me, it is annoying-usually happens when I'm lying down.  Unfortunately, lyme is very hard to diagnose once it has got to its chronic stage.  I started getting sick in December 2007, had a rash (not bullseye) on my feet, gained 30 pounds, developed arthritis throughout my whole body, and saw 6 doctors until finally figuring out what was wrong with me through a lyme specialist.  If you have any of the symptoms of lyme (there are many more), I would recommend finding a specialist who does the Western Blot blood test as the test they do in the regular doctor's offices usually will come back negative if you don't get tested within the first few weeks of contracting the disease.  

Not sure if the sand falling has anything to do with the lyme, but I didn't have it happen until I got lyme disease.  I hope this helps.

PS:  lyme is often misdiagnosed as lupis, MS, chronic fatigue syndrome, fibromyalgia!
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Avatar_m_tn
I have the same :D it sounds like those sweeties you used to get called "moondust" at the bottom of my throat, it's weird, not sore but just very weird.  What is it lols?
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1209419_tn?1265951283
omg. finally! people like me! it sounds like pop rocks got stuck in my throat and wont go away! Im not the only one! Well I know my hubby gets them too and we thought we were weird. and it only happens when i am hungry and somehow sneezing is always connected to it... like I always have "throat crackle" when i feel the emptiness.. it lasts about 4-5seconds then goes away and i sneeze then itll come back a few more times. lol. and I feel uneasy also until i get something to eat. Ive had this for as long as I can remember. i remember asking my mom if she had it too when i was about 6 or 7. I wonder what it is. should we maybe ask a doctor?!!?!?
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Avatar_m_tn
Finally other ppl with this, I went to the doctor a couple of times about this, one said it could be a condition (forgot the name - it was years ago) where the patient usually appears vacant during the time this happens, however the diagnosed symptoms last for usually a minimum of half an hour. The other doctor laughed at me and said it was impossible that an audible noise could come from within my head. This was after i told him that my girlfriend looked at me wierdly when it was happening and asked if i was making that noise (i didnt let her know it was happening at that point untill then).
Mine only last for a minute or so and during this i feel very sick and quite dizzy and sometimes feel like im about to collapse.
Its happened for as long as i can remember. I'm just worrying that its having long term damage on my brain, nerves or similar.
I know no one else who has this so i am really glad to find others like myself! Hope this gets a medical diagnosis sometime soon.
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Avatar_m_tn
I've been searching for sometime to the answer of what is causing a snapping, or cracking sound coming from appears to be the inside of my head. And no I don't have tinitis. I searched and seached finding others with this complaint who were voicing their agruements that they could not find an answer to this strange thing. A lot of them went to get MRIs and to see specialists who told them there was nothing there. Well after long searching I believe I might have found an answer. I heard that the snapping sound can be caused by adhesions in the brain. Basically when your body repairs tissues it sends karatine to that area and it isn't so elastic. Over time (For some reasons when I meditate it really acts up) the karatine breaks down and the tissues become flexible again. I took a lot of drugs when I was younger and have repaired the damage so this explanation makes more sense to me given my life experiences if you know what I mean. I hope this helps someone out there.
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Avatar_f_tn
yea but what does adhesions in the brain have to do with being hungry? i get this noise too.. to me it sounds like water draining out the bathtub after it makes that water spout funnel lookin thing lol that slurpy sound. and i mainly get this noise when i'm hungry and i have NO idea what it is.. it really scares me and i really want to know what is causing this.. i've never met ANYBODY else who experiences this.. people tell me i'm insane.
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Avatar_m_tn
I've been dealing with this for about over 10 yrs. I'm 33 now. I've put a lot of thought and effort into figuring it out. I think it is a sinus issue... I dont know how that can explain all the symptoms and sensations, but it makes sense. I have alopecia universalis. I have an enlarged thyroid. Otherwise I am very healthy. I am active physically and mentally- I excercise frequently, read frequently, play chess, train in martial arts... I have a desk job that is mental and analytical in nature. To me, the popping seems to me to be associated with the building up and releasing of pressure - like a string drawn tight but is caught on something - the pressure builds up and then finally "pop" and releases. I can hear and feel the pop inside my head, often a large number of them in succession, and I can feel the associated release of the pressure. The area is spread out over my whole head, and when the pressure in one area in my head is released, other places also build up pressure and release. For me, there is some correlation with food and diet - so I think there may be a dietary deficiency involved. I find that when I eat seafood - especially shrimp, lobster, scallops, etc, and also oatmeal(the best), there is a very noticeable effect in a very short amount of time - the pressure builds up quickly, often along with a headache, until it builds up enough to pop and release itself.  Sometimes unless I eat the right kind of food, I feel hungry no matter how much I eat. Also, reading or meditating can bring the pressure on faster, especially in combination with the above foods - usually will bring on a pretty good day and night of snap crackle pop. again, I think it has to do with the opening of sinuses because I notice that I breathe a bit easier after the popping, and I snore less and sleep better, feel more rested in the morning. I also seem to have more energy and strength after the pressure is released.  Also, I notice that sex has the opposite effect. after sex, the "string" is looser, and over time the pressure will eventually build up again.
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Avatar_m_tn
I can't a lot of people get this. It happens to me when I'm hungry and usually laying down (chair or bed). I have bad memory and it scares me that this maybe the cause of it. I also tend to move a lot and people tell me I have ADD or anxeity.
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Avatar_n_tn
I have this weird issue too. My Theory is a sinus issue. When your stomach growls it is a movement of food or air down to the intestines. This causes a negative pressure in your stomach and esophagus. Since your esophagus is connected to your sinus it is creating a sucking pressure in your sinus and eustachian tubes moving the mucus around and creating the crackle, pop, fizz whatever sound. I developed this after sinus surgery to repair a deviated septum and relieve sinus pressure. It sounds harmless but I always wonder if there is some clog in my sinus that has not been completely relieved.  I should get another MRI.
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Avatar_m_tn
Both your posts are are onto something.  I agree too that popping and cracking sounds may be related to sinus issues.  I have no headaches or have not noticed anything when eating.  I don't have the sand grit sound either.  I do have an extreme crack of the head sound that anyone can hear and they even are amazed of how noisy it is.  I can crack my  head... and notice I don't say neck... because I feel the crack by the anterolateral fontanelle or by the or the coronal or sagital suture of the cranium... by looking at an infants skull... or I can describe it like if the ridges of the parietal or frontal bones in the skull where colliding or the temporal or sphenoid bones... any of these mostly on the sphenoid were it meats the frontal or parietal (http://www.buzzle.com/articles/bones-in-the-human-body.html).

One thing is for sure when in pops and cracks like fireworks I feel relief and my sinus near the right nostril feels pressure release and relaxation and I can breath better.  I can speculate this is weather and stress related as it happens more during stressful times of my life and in the sinus cavity I feel my superior nasal concha (turbinate) retreat or move leading to better breathing.... but then it returns and the cycle repeats.  It might be a pinched nerved that causes tension or sinus inflammation... as advised by a chiropractor.  Hope this helps anyone.
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Avatar_m_tn
I almost forgot... found this on the web... article written by therapist: http://sportscenteraustin.blogs.com/the_view/2003/06/is_the_pop_in_y.html
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Avatar_m_tn
I think that's post-nasal drip. That crackling in your throat.  My ENT says I have some inflamation (inflammation) due to allergies and the post nasal drip that comes with it.  So, she put me on a sprat.  I get the whole "pop rocks" feeling in my throat, and when I squirt my prescription nose spray (allergies) it happens less.
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Avatar_m_tn
neurotransmitters running up your spinal column into your cerebellum.
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Avatar_m_tn
From what I've gathered with mine is my nausea is worst when i feel/hear the crackling. It can most likely just be a natural response of your body to make yourself feel somewhat sick to push you to eat. Though it is fairly useless in today's society, it may have come into use when food was not as plentiful for people and having a sick feeling would push them to get food. As to why the neurotransmitters are making so much noise i do not know, but my assumption is just a large amount trying to get into the cerebellum to make you feel hungry.
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Avatar_n_tn
I have the same type of thing when I walk and when I stretch my muscles.  Anyone have any clue what this might be?
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Avatar_m_tn
I'm getting the pop rocks big time tonight with a headache. Maybe it's diet change from the new year or something. I took some aspirin. It feels like sticky brain and cracking knuckles in all my skull joints. Makes me want to shake my head a lot to normalize stresses or something. Whew. Hope it goes away soon. Hard to sleep when I feel like this. Thanks and good to know I'm not alone. Paul V in Southern California age 62 and counting.
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Avatar_m_tn
Hello every-one: i have a snapping sound in the back of my mouth and down my throat it seems.I have been diagnosed with RLS= Restless Limb Synd.
and i am being watched for lupus as i have all the signs except the butterfly rash.I also have a condition called Mechanical neck synd.Could they all be related ????Thank You Marilyn Bell
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Avatar_m_tn
I just want to comment. It seems there are a few different things going on here that people are talking about. Some of you have cracking sounds coming from your head. I am wondering about the people who have the trickling sand sound. That's the only way I can describe it. The only way I can come close to duplicating the noise, is if I rub the back of my neck with one finger over my hair. Except that the noise I get is definately coming from inside the back of my neck, right at the base of my skull. When I'm hungry. It ALMOST like it is in conjunction with a stomache growl, but not always. But I only get it when I am hungry. Also, I used to get it all the time when I was growing up. I also was overweight as a child. Now, as an adult, I lost weight and didn't experience it for at least the last 6 years or more. Now I have put weight back on, and boom. Today, I just had that weird trickling sand sensation again for the first time in a long time. I remember that I did mention it to my doctor as a child, but coming from a child I was basically told it was my imagination.
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Avatar_m_tn
I just want to comment. It seems there are a few different things going on here that people are talking about. Some of you have cracking sounds coming from your head. I am wondering about the people who have the trickling sand sound. That's the only way I can describe it. The only way I can come close to duplicating the noise, is if I rub the back of my neck with one finger over my hair. Except that the noise I get is definately coming from inside the back of my neck, right at the base of my skull. When I'm hungry. It ALMOST like it is in conjunction with a stomache growl, but not always. But I only get it when I am hungry. Also, I used to get it all the time when I was growing up. I also was overweight as a child. Now, as an adult, I lost weight and didn't experience it for at least the last 6 years or more. Now I have put weight back on, and boom. Today, I just had that weird trickling sand sensation again for the first time in a long time. I remember that I did mention it to my doctor as a child, but coming from a child I was basically told it was my imagination.
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Avatar_m_tn
I am glad that you have mentioned the differences in what people are saying here. Quite a few descriptions are not what i have and there is no feeling of pressure when i get this strange noise in my head. I would describe this as like butterflies with metal wings in my head crossed with screaching brakes. Still happens most days multiple times unless i eat when i feel it about to come on.  I have recently (past 2 days) taken someSlim FX tablets to aid in weight loss and these are supposed to help repress your hunger. Whilst i am still as hungry as usual when i have these, i have not had this noise happen during the duration of these tablets being in effect. I have also not eaten for hours loger than usual whilst having these, despite actually feeling hungry because this noise is no longer there. I am not sure why these would combat this insane condition that no one knows about but it seems to work. Would still love to have someone diagnosed with this and know what the hell it is.
Pete
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Avatar_m_tn
I feel the exact same way.... so nosey... I will soon be a paramedic.... I honestly believe that it is the chemical signally our brain to eat... I`m pretty sure that we are all healthy... I have no health issues but smoke.... I always called this my fast metabolism working because it happens often for me.... I forget to eat alot, always so busy non stop running around getting things done. I hope this helps, still curious.  Searching for answers still. ;)
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Avatar_m_tn
Thanks for all of the posts and information. I've been noticing this same problem over the last few years, but ONLY when I get a cold (and that is rare, maybe once a year). I'm male, 47 years old. Right now I've been fighting a cold and flu for the last 4 days. I'm seemingly now over the aches and shivers of the flu, but the cold is still both in my chest and sinuses. I'm drinking a lot of water, have continued to eat fairly regularly, have rested A LOT, slept as much as I can. But since the 3rd day of fighting this, I have a crackling at the base of my throat - it's like pop rocks in my head. And it only happens when I breathe. If I hold my breath, it stops. If I stand or sit up, it goes away sometimes. It can last 2 hours or more without letting up. I've tried chloraseptic, cough drops, cough syrup, water - none of those calm it down. It is bad enough that in the last 8 hours of trying to sleep, I only got about 2. Good luck to those of you with the more serious conditions, but for me this is only with a cold. Since I've been sitting here at the computer typing this, the crackling has gone away.
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Avatar_m_tn
You are not alone. many in this posting are worried about sinus troubles, but i could tell immediately that u are experiencing the exact thing as I am. it seems as though what we are experiencing is so rare, and so difficult to comprehend for the understanding of others, that it gets lost in the translation of other symptoms of other disorders/problems (partly why it ***** sooo badly). What we are experiencing is like trickling sand-like sounds, trickling water-like sounds, squirting water-like sounds, static electricity-like sounds and comes with headaches as well.. am i right? they seem to arise when hunger strikes, and frankly keep me up at night, wakes me up in the morning, any other time i am laying down, but also when im at school, trying to study (seems to affect memory and brain function). for the past few years, to the present day Feb 2013, i have experienced these symptoms, thinking it had something to do with daily smoking of marijuana, and other drug use. now that im done with all of that, i realized its a more sever problem, and may even be damaging long term if not treated. my doctor is a family friend, but even he took my first few mentions of these symptoms as mal-nutrition symptoms (because of the correlation i had mentioned of the temporary relief of these symptoms to eating). Eating meat seemed to help for awhile, eating veges and fruit seemed to help, taking vitamins (especially Emergen-C), even just getting nutrition in general helped, but seem to fade more and more in there relief. as i have persisted to bug my doc about it, we finally got blood work done. he noticed very high levels of insulin...very high. what he believes it to be is an "insulin cyst" which is the result of some pancreas disease/disorder, and may be serious. insulin may be leaking into your abdomin (abdomen) and stomach. I learned in my general bio 1 class at university of colorado denver, and learned that insulin is important to digestion and use of proteins in the body. if we are experiencing this rare condition, no matter what the cause, it is impeding normal brain function, and is almost the exact opposite of diabetes. diabetics have too little insulin. we on the other hand, may have a major excess of insulin that will float around in your head (hence the feeling and sounds), which will cause the person to gain weight/lose weight rapidly, will cause unbearable hunger and head aches, and may ultimately require removal by surgery. also if eating protein foods help, its a good sign that you are matching up the insulin with the necessary proteins, a temporary fix, but you can never keep up. Please try a few things. eat MEAT, take vitamins, drink lots of water, and eat fruits and veges, and email me at bradley.***@**** if u notice temporary relief of these symptoms from these symptoms. if so, u should mention this all to a doctor, and request blood work and a CT scan of these areas, and dont let any doctor push u aside like ur crazy, cuz what ur experiencing is very real, just not common at all, and is painful, stupid, and shouldnt be stopping comfortable living. if ur doc wont, then request a specialist, or change doctors. good luck and i hope we can all figure this out.
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Avatar_m_tn
i guess just post in response cuz it censors my email.
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Avatar_m_tn
I AM up in years but in mostly  great shape however ayear ago I have got tininitis in ear of which there is no cure except hearing aide but iam dealing right now without any aid.But lately I got crackling in upper neck especially looking down on this computer or maybe I am using the computer too much! Some of you said sinus and I say maybe! SO WHAT I AM GOING TO DO IS DRY UP MY SINUS WITH SOME MEDICATIONS and see if  that works  and then lay back and not use the computer so much and see if that works.I hope this helps good luck
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Avatar_m_tn
I am 45 years old and have noticed this for years.  Only recently I made the association between this strange pop rocks/rice krispies sound and hunger, and now when I hear the sound it is in sync with my stomach growling.  The sound seems to emanate from my brain, but after reading the posts in this forum I have to agree that the source is within my sinuses.  I also agree with another poster that this is likely negative pressure from the stomach draining into the upper intestines, and the sound is probably the movement of fluid in the sinus as it gets sucked through due to this pressure change.  There is never any pain or discomfort involved.  I am also thinking this could be part of an evolutionary survival mechanism to ensure us humans get nourishment when we are hungry (mainly through the stomach growling which is certainly louder!), lest we die from starvation.  Like most of us, I always questioned whether the "sound" was really happening (or was it just in my imagination!) until one day I was lying in bed and wife asked me what the heck that cracking sound was...what a relief to know this was real!  I think it is funny that some have actually gotten MRI's done in response, my wife wanted me to see a neurologist because of it...but I just imagined any doctor thinking I was crazy.  Glad to see there is a community out there experiencing the same thing...I can go on with my life now! :) It is happening right now at 7am on a Saturday...and I know the cure...eggs & bacon :)
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