One in five students interviewed in Washington State University study said they had experienced this at least once and some even say that it had significant impact in their lives.
The syndrome occurs when the person is falling sleep, scientist say that this happens before the brain shuts down.
In this phenomenon auditory neurons instead of turning off slowly and gradually, crash at once and the bang can be heard only by the person.
“That’s why you get these crazy-loud noises that you can’t explain, and they’re not actual noises in your environment,” says Brian Sharpless, an assistant professor and director of the university’s psychology clinic.
“Unfortunately for this minority of individuals, no well-articulated or empirically supported treatments are available, and very few clinicians or researchers assess for it,” he said.
The blasts last only for a few seconds, but the experience make some of them feel that they had a seizure or brain hemorrhage.
“They may think they’re going crazy and they don’t know that a good chunk of the population has had the exact same thing,” he said.
“One of the drugs they gave for exploding head syndrome actually didn’t make the noises go away,” Sharpless said. “It just turned the volume down.”
“There’s the possibility that just being able to recognize it and not be afraid of it can make it better.”