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Anger is a universal emotion, one of the commonest of human experiences. Everyone experiences feelings of anger and rage every now and then. Sometimes, however, anger gets out of control and affects the lives of those who struggle with controlling their anger, and those of the people around them. This form of anger can cause extreme amounts of distress for those afflicted, and at its worst, can come with serious consequences, such as ruined relationships and even criminal charges.
While out of control anger doesn't necessarily fall under one single diagnostic umbrella, there are some conditions that feature anger as a primary symptom. Intermittent explosive disorder is commonly attributed to adults who have trouble controlling their anger, while oppositional defiant disorder is typically applied to children with issues controlling their anger. Despite these diagnostic labels, it is entirely possible to have issues with out of control anger in the absence of a formal condition such as these. In such cases, seeking the help of a qualified professional, practicing healthy coping strategies, and finding a supportive group are all effective and helpful ways to help control anger.
Whether or not you meet the criteria for an anger disorder, the following symptoms can be indicative of an issue with out of control anger. They include:
Often, excessive anger can be a symptom of another untreated disorder. Conditions such as depression, particularly in men, can often manifest themselves as excessive anger, and as a result often go unnoticed by medical professionals. While rare, physical issues such as brain tumors and traumatic brain injuries (TBIs) can also cause excessive anger and deficits in emotional regulation. If you struggle with excessive anger, it is crucial to get a formal assessment by a qualified professional, in order to determine the root cause of your anger.
It is important to reach out for help if you struggle with excessive anger. Like most psychological issues, excessive anger rarely gets better on its own. While other psychological issues might result in self-destructive behavior, anger issues are particularly dangerous in that the person struggling with anger might lash out and hurt someone else. This includes irreversible incidents such as domestic violence, traffic accidents due to road rage, and a ruined reputation due to angry outbursts. People who struggle with excessive anger often feel an enormous amount of shame due to their issues, which is why it is vital that they work on these issues with a healthcare provider who is empathetic and can help them tackle these issues in a shame-free environment.
Benefits of Anger Management Therapy
If you've struggled with your anger, you've no doubt seen some real consequences as a result of your outbursts. From damaged interpersonal relationships to legal troubles stemming from outbursts, the consequences of out of control anger are very real, and unfortunately, irreversible in many situations. As alarming as it may be, some who have struggled with their anger have made choices that have resulted in harm or even the deaths of others.
Keeping this in mind, the benefits of seeking treatment for your anger cannot be overstated. Improved relationships, greater stability in one's life, and freedom from a nagging sense of guilt are all benefits that come with working proactively on one's anger issues, and the potential benefits don't stop there.
Due to the shame and stigma surrounding those who struggle with their anger, many who could benefit from anger management therapy opt not to seek help, a choice which often results in prolonged suffering for everyone subjected to this anger and a greatly reduced quality of life. At Overcomers Counseling, we recognize the necessity of cultivating a positive, shame-free environment for the benefit of our patients.
If you're prepared to take the first step in taking back control of your life and your emotions, reach out to one of our counselors for a consultation.