Anger Issues

Boy screaming because he is angry

Anger Issues

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We all deal with anger, but when someone reacts in the extreme or with violence, it could be that person is dealing with anger issues. Those of us who have consistent trouble keeping their anger in check may even have what is referred to as Intermittent Explosive Disorder (IED).

Anger is a basic human emotion, and it is healthy to experience and express anger. However, there is also a line that should rarely, if ever, be crossed. And consistent expression of anger that includes rage, verbal tirades, or any type of physical expression (including bodily harm to anyone or anything else, including animals) is a sign that something needs to be addressed.

Often, those who experience anger issues or IED are dealing with other conditions, such as anxiety or depression. Substance abuse can also foster or emphasize a person’s expression of anger. And there are other factors that could trigger anger issues, such as brain trauma.

Most often, you will see anger issues in men, most commonly in men aged 20-30. However, it can also present in young people, most often revealing itself just prior to or during adolescence.

The good news is that consistent and targeted treatment, including traditional psychiatry, can do much to mitigate anger issues and IED.

Displeased son with anger issues sitting with arms crossed on sofa at home. Worried mother looking at her child. Focus on boy.

How anger issues work

Those people who experience anger issues or IED will often display sudden fury in reaction to situations that might otherwise simply annoy others. These rages may also feature a boost in energy, racing thoughts, heart palpitations, chest tightness, tingling, or increased tension. These abrupt episodes may not even last very long – typically less than a half hour – and those who struggle with these explosions often regret them almost immediately. So, it may be hard to recognize that someone has a serious problem, as you could think that they simply let their emotions get the better of them.

Yet anger issues may also be chronic for some, leaving them irritable and annoyed more often than not.

Those experiencing anger issues or IED are undergoing a mental health challenge and will likely need professional help to mitigate the circumstance.

Those people that struggle with other mental health concerns are also far more likely to experience anger issues. For instance, ADHD sufferers or those people with personality disorders are often beset by anger issues or IED.

Outside experiences can also bring about the onset of anger issues. And people that have suffered abuse, especially during their youth, or sustained traumas have a much higher risk of developing anger issues. In fact, studies show that brain trauma – specifically to the left temporal lobe – can lead to increased anger, irritability, and violence. That is because the temporal lobes, control emotional stability, as well as understanding and processing memories. And because of their location within the front of the skull (just behind the eyes), the temporal lobes are more prone to sustaining injury than other parts of the brain. Yet it is not just trauma that could affect a change, as constant exposure to toxins or even chronic infection (such as Lyme disease) could also lead to issues within the temporal lobes and thus produce anger issues.

If you are concerned that yourself or a loved one may be experiencing anger issues or IED, be on the lookout for continued overreactions, as well as any physical expression of anger, including fighting or bullying of animals.

If left untreated, anger issues can lead to lasting or devastating consequences within a person’s life, as it effects every aspect of their life, including relationships, work, and/or school. It can also lead to legal concerns, substance abuse, and even self-harm or suicidal behavior – as the sufferer is often beset by guilt and trauma over their actions.

Strong screaming due to a tantrum and anger issues

How psychiatry works to treat anger issues

Do not confuse traditional psychiatry with anger management classes. Despite the fact that anger management can be very beneficial to some sufferers of anger issues or IED, it may not fully address the issue for many sufferers. The truth is that not all anger management classes are based on the latest scientific evidence. That is why a trained and board-certified mental health professional is key in helping diagnose and treat anger and IED concerns.

The good news is that reams of respected research studies suggest that, overall, approximately 75 percent of people that receive anger management therapy improved as a result. And many psychiatric approaches to anger issues center around cognitive-behavioral therapy (CBT).

CBT helps patients to identify unhelpful or negative thought patterns and change inaccurate beliefs. For instance, a CBT approach known as stress inoculation exposes a patient to imaginary incidents designed to provoke anger. This allows the patient to monitor their anger in a safe environment and practice coping methods for real-life situations.

Other approaches, including family therapy targets conflict resolution and improved communication, while psychodynamic therapy utilizes self-reflection to focus on the psychological roots of emotional distress.

How Bridgepoint works to help you

We will help you examine the triggers and reasons behind your anger issues. We will also help you explore how your anger is shaping your life and determine how it has been harmful – or even helpful – throughout your experience.

We will help you get to the bottom of your anger issues and discover and treat any other related issues – such as depression, anxiety, ADHD, etc. – so that you may achieve significant and lasting relief from this mental health concern.

As medical doctors, we will also be able to determine if any medications may be helpful and prescribe those treatments. And in order that you receive a complete and broad-spectrum approach to treatment, we will also address any concerns that may be related to trauma or chronic illness.

Our approach to traditional psychiatry has produced many successful results, and we will work to help you find the relief that you seek.


Get help today and change your life

Bridgepoint clinicians understand the intricate and very real nature of anger issues and IED and how best to address the changes that occur in patients suffering from this issue.

If you are concerned about anger issues or IED, please do not hesitate to call our offices today and schedule an appointment with our caring professionals. We will ensure that you get the assistance and mental health support that you need. We can set up an in-office appointment or talk with you over a tele-health visit to get started.


Contact us at our offices in Smyrna between 9 a.m. and 5 p.m. at 770-858-5377.

Visit Our Resources Page

Bridgepoint encourages clinicians, patients, and their loved ones to research new methodologies and techniques to improve mental health and wellbeing. To assist with your own learning, we’ve put together a variety of resources on a variety of topics – including genomics – to help you on your mental health journey.

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Lonely sad boy at home