Anger is a side effect of PTSD that most of us deal with. I talk about it often because it is so destructive to us and to those we love. Anger hurts us in so many ways. It causes or contributes to the following:
- Increased blood pressure
- Chronic pain
- Heart disease
- Muscle and joint pain
- Dental problems (from jaw clenching and teeth grinding)
- Increases cholesterol
- Weakens the immune system
- Upsets the stomach and digestive system
- Early death
In addition, anger affects our personal relationships. It can lead to:
- Injury to self or others
- Domestic violence
- Child and pet abuse
- Work-related problems
- Legal and financial problems
- Road rage and tickets
- Jail or prison time
Anger can burn us if we don’t learn to control it. Unchecked, anger becomes aggression and people begin to fear and avoid us. So how do we control our anger?
Anger increases when we indulge in negative “self-talk.” I often call this “psycho-babble,” where we hold a conversation in our heads about a topic. As we concentrate about what we are angry over our anger grows until we work ourselves into a frenzy. That is the thing about anger; the more we think about it, the more we feed it until it grows so big it breaks free and spills over onto someone else. That is bad for them and for us.
Learn to control your anger rather than letting it control you. Don’t let anger burn you or those you care about.