Anger Disorder/Intermittent Explosive Disorder (IED)
Many people have trouble managing their anger. Feeling angry is part of being human. It is a natural response to being attacked, insulted, deceived or frustrated. Sometimes, excessive anger can also be a symptom of some mental health problems.
WHAT IS ANGER DISORDER?
People who suffer from anger disorder are unable to control themselves, exploding with rage in a way which is often out of proportion to the event which triggered the anger. Like many psychological disorders, IED can be treated with help from a psychological professional, but first it needs to be identified as a problem and diagnosed.
SHORT-TEMPERED OR ANGER DISORDER?
People with IED could be said to be simply short-tempered, but anger disorder goes beyond this point. Most people with irritability and short tempers do have some control over their actions, and explosions of rage which result in serious damage or harm are unusual, thanks to self-control. Someone with anger disorder is actually unstable, lacking the ability to make choices which could prevent explosive occurrences. A short tempered person might snap at an irritating coworker, for example, in an understandable if inappropriate emotional display, while someone with anger disorder might break a keyboard after making a typographical error.
Anger can be useful, but it can also be frightening. When something makes you angry, adrenalin causes your body to prepare for ‘fight or flight’, giving you energy and making you feel tense. Releasing this energy and tension is good for you, but it can be difficult to do so in ways that are constructive. In most situations, fight or flight isn’t helpful and anger can often lead to responses that make things worse rather than better.
– Being angry isn’t a problem in itself. It’s how you deal with it. When you don’t express your anger, or express it at inappropriate times or in unsafe ways, this is when it can damage your health and your relationships. If something has made you angry in the past and you didn’t express your anger at the time, this can have negative consequences in the longer term – you may find that when something happens to annoy or upset you in the future, you feel extremely angry and respond more aggressively than is appropriate to the new situation.
It might lead to:
• depression or anxiety
• sleep problems
• alcohol or drug addictions
• eating disorders
• compulsive behaviour e.g. excessive cleaning, overworking
• digestion – contributing to the development of heartburn, ulcers,
colitis, gastritis or irritable bowel syndrome
• heart and circulatory system
• blood pressure – driving it too high.
What triggers anger
It may be when you are being threatened or assaulted, or being discriminated against or treated unfairly. It could be that you feel powerless or frustrated, or are just fed up with being stuck in traffic. You may also have to look back at what has happened in your past, to recognise what is triggering angry feelings you are experiencing now.
Learn your triggers – keep a diary or notes about the times you have felt angry.
• What were the circumstances?
• Did someone say or do something to trigger your anger?
• How did you feel?
• How did you behave?
• How did you feel afterwards?
Talking treatments – are usually some form of counselling or psychotherapy.
Look out for warning signs (of anger)
• the adrenaline rush in your body
• your heart is beating faster
• you are breathing more quickly
• your body is becoming tense
• your feet are tapping
• you are clenching your fists.
Train yourself to pause before expressing your feelings
“Do I want to lash out and hit someone?”. If the answer to either of these is yes, then it may be best to walk away from a difficult situation and go away somewhere to calm down. This might allow you to let out the anger in a constructive way, for example through exercise, and somewhere where it will not alarm anyone or mean that you regret your actions later.
Try some calming techniques
• Breathing slowly – one technique is to breathe out for longer than you breathe in, and then relax as you breathe out.
• Counting to 10 before you react – this gives you time to calm down so you can think more clearly.
• Doing something creative – this can channel your energy and focus towards something else.
• Listening to calming music – this can help change your mood and slow your physical and emotional reactions down.
• Using a relaxation technique such as yoga or meditation.
here’s a website of more informations of how to release anger
Look at your lifestyle
Healthy diet & exercise- Lack of certain nutrients can make you feel irritable and weak, and so a healthy diet is likely to help you feel more in control of your feelings. Exercise can increase your self-esteem, releases ‘feel good’ hormones, and is a good way to let out any tension that is building up.
Lack of sleep can make you irritable and less able to contain your anger
Help someone with anger problem
-show the person that you care about them and support them
– give them some time and space to calm down.
-When the person is calm, talk about the triggers that cause them to become angry and what they should do when this happens.
-encourage them to seek help from a counsellor or psychotherapist
-make sure that you are safe before doing anything to try and help them. Keeping a list of phone numbers of people or organisations/services you can call if you are scared
Violence and aggression
Anger can give a large surge of energy that makes you react in ways that you normally wouldn’t. If you express your anger through aggression or violence it can be very frightening and damaging for the people around you – especially children. This could damage your relationships and mean that people stop listening to you. It could lose you your job or get you into trouble with the law.
-meaning violence from one partner in a relationship to another, is fairly common
-People who have experienced domestic violence are likely to go on to have mental health problems, which may include post-traumatic stress disorder ( PTSD), as a reaction to the abuse they have suffered.
Here’s a pdf file which makes me understand more of anger management.