Dangers of anger

  • By Team TDO

Anger is an acid that can do more harm to the vessel in which it is stored than to anything on which it is poured.
Mark Twain.

The above quote is quite apt - Anger can indeed be like a corrosive acid attack on your health. Some people blame it on their red hair or temperament, while some believe they are born angry, others suppress their anger. Either way, anger can have terrible effect on health.

Laura Kubzansky, an associate professor at the Harvard School of Public Health, who has studied the role of stress and emotions on cardiovascular diseases, has found that anger, hostility and aggression push the body to either fight or flee the scene. Breathing, heart rate and blood pressure spiral up, and you feel that rush of blood in your head. Some people can actually, though rarely, have a stroke if they get extremely angry.
'While stress response mobilizes you for emergencies, it might cause harm if activated repeatedly.You get high cortisol and high adrenaline levels and that is the cardio toxic effect of anger expression, " says Jerry Kiffer, MA, a heart-brain researcher at the Cleveland Clinic's Psychological Testing Centre.

So the heart races, and all systems go into overdrive to accommodate this great surge of emotion welling up in the mind - this manifests as the heart thudding at top speed and rage in the form of pure adrenalin screeching for an outlet.

This is why anger is not such a good idea. However, anger is such a common thing that we have taken it as a given of human nature - it is common to raise your voice and throw an apoplectic fit of rage at the drop of a hat.

We don't bat an eyelid while shouting down someone for perceived slights on the highway. Our children get beaten up or mistreated by parents for no fault of their own, and then we wonder why there is so much unhappiness and misery in our world. We don’t realize it that we are unwittingly contributing to an ‘Angry World’ by allowing the angry monster in us to go on a rampage. Not only will this anger incinerate everything within view, but is also passed on from parents to their children much like passing the Olympic Torch.

Letting out emotions

While it is healthy to express anger, the moot point is the degree of anger expressed. Every day, review the situations that make you angry. How much of the anger is really justified? You can't change the world but you can surely choose the way you can react to a situation. Practice serenity by invoking peaceful images of peace and tranquility when you are in situations where you potentially can get angry. You will gradually find yourself being less reactive and will also be able to have better judgement of when and how much anger you ought to express.