Madison Healthstyle


Are You Ok with Your Anger?

What is anger?

Anger is a normal and powerful emotion familiar to every person. There is a tremendous variation of expression from simple irritation to extreme madness and rage. Anger is caused by internal matters (personal issues such as relationship difficulties or problems at work) or external matters such as arguing with another person or disturbing events such as the unprecedented situation of COVID-19 or travel restrictions of a few years ago. The ‘road rage’ issue is another classic example of uncontrolled anger, which may include internal and external events. It is worthwhile asking yourself, ‘R U OK?’ Some people quickly get angry more than others, in which they could have antisocial personality disorders or angry dispositions that hereditary or cultural factors can explain.

What are the effects of anger on your health?

Repetitive episodes of uncontrolled anger can affect health in many ways—physically, emotionally, and socially. The body’s response to releasing high levels of stress hormones and substances like adrenaline can cause unhealthy consequences, such as insomnia, anxiety, depression, headaches including migraines, high blood pressure, heartburn, irritable bowel syndrome and even fatal heart attacks and stroke. On the other hand, there is a decrease in relaxing Serotonin, which leads to being easily irritated, quickly being in pain, increased aggressive behaviour and depression. If the anger gets the good of you, then you should stop, focus on your lifestyle and do something to get out of this situation.

What are the recognised warning signs of anger?

Usually, some people recognise the signs before they start to feel angry. Some of the warning signs are: Rapidly pounding heart (Tachycardia), shaking, sweating, tight chest, gritting teeth, raising the voice, mood swings, becoming defensive, criticising, and argumentative. Anger can be suppressed and then converted or redirected. Many people who are normally well-controlled become uncontrolled with excessive alcohol, so these people need to avoid alcohol or limit their alcohol intake.

What should you do to control your anger?

People prone to anger should look at themselves and try to work out why they feel angry, what triggers affect them and what methods should be considered to help them get out of this situation.

Keep a diary to write down outbursts, precipitating events or incidents, reactions, feelings, bad aspects, positive aspects or outcomes. Ask yourself, ‘Are you OK?’ and listen to your internal answer. If you suspect that you have an anger problem, you should consider seeking help from a person you can trust, such as your practitioner, a psychologist or a counsellor, as these professionals are trained in techniques of anger management, including relaxation techniques, problem-solving, and cognitive behavioural therapy.

What are the helpful ways to express/ manage anger at home?

Anger is a normal and even healthy emotion — but it’s vital to deal with it positively. However, when It becomes uncontrollable, this could affect your health and your relationships. There are several helpful ways to consider managing anger at home.

  • Go for a long walk or run
  • Sit quietly in a park or other pleasant place
  • Go to the Cinema (if applicable)
  • Share any problem with someone you trust
  • Listen to your favourite music
  • Play your favourite sport or learn a new sport
  • Go swimming or surfing regularly
  • Take a long bath, spa or sauna
  • Take up a gym membership, yoga, tai chi or similar activity
  • Practice relaxation skills and meditate.
  • Use humour to release tension.
  • Think before you speak.
  • Know when to seek help

Helpful tips

  • Avoid arguments.
  • Avoid situations that tend to provoke anger.
  • You cannot afford to get violent.
  • Learn to express your anger safely.
  • Learn relaxation techniques such as meditation or yoga.
  • Avoid alcohol or other substances that may affect you.