Science of Anger

One may wonder what causes anger, why people gets angry for no just cause and maybe benefits of anger. Wait can anger be beneficial? This questions is addressed in this article

WHAT IS ANGER

Anger is an intense emotional state. It involves a strong uncomfortable and hostile response to a perceived provocation, hurt or threat.

Anger is a term for the emotional aspect of aggression, as a basic aspect of the stress response in animals in which a perceived aggravating stimulus “provokes” a counterresponse which is likewise aggravating and threatening of violence.

BIOCHEMISTRY OF ANGER

Anger starts in your brain

In the brain, there is a region called amygdala. This compartment of the brain processes information related to your emotions. After that, it triggers specific reactions in your body.

For example, it signals the production of chemical molecules. This happens to send an alarm to your body in order for you to be alert. When you get angry, your brain orders the release of neurotransmitters called catecholamines (Epinephrine and norepinephrine).

Role of Epinephrine and norepinephrine in anger

There are two biomolecules from the family of catecholamines that plays the main role in angry. We are talking about the hormones. Epinephrine and norepinephrine, also known as adrenaline and noradrenaline.

Have you heard of adrenaline rush?

Upon release, these molecules provide your system with energy and strength for several minutes.

The energy released prepares us to act against something or someone who caused our anger. That’s why you feel pumped up and ready to go to war. Adrenaline makes your senses alert and even makes you feel less pain.

Epinephrine and norepinephrine lead to the increase of blood pressure, an accelerated heart rate, and faster breathing. Your heart muscles contract and your blood vessels constrict.

Why do you feel Anger ?

Anger has a lot do with thinking. We are thinking of a rule or a deal in a situation. We think that a certain rule is violated or a promise not held.

Let’s say you order 100 piece of meat pie for a house party, but the delivery guy just brings 50 and then behaves rudely. Your brain understands (or thinks) that there is an unjust situation. You get angry…

Actually, the reaction of our body to anger and fear are very similar. The released neurotransmitters are almost the same in both feelings. If you decide to panic and run away or get aggressive and want to fight, has to do with your thoughts.

However, scientists also state that there are some characteristic physiological differences, too. For example, anger raises our body temperature, whereas fear leads to its reduction.

How your body manages anger?

Now we know what happens in our body when we get angry. But what we don’t know is how our body signals that we should not be aggressive or enraged.

How to control oneself?

What is the mechanism in our brain that relates to anger management?

The place to look at is the prefrontal cortex. It is the region in your brain which enables you to control your emotions. It gives you the ability of judgement.

Imagine a good angel sitting there and telling you not to react in an aggressive way. That’s the cortex. And the devil resides in the amygdala. In principle, we observe a neuronal war between the amygdala and the cortex, the bad and the good.

Scientists have found that the left part of the prefrontal cortex is associated with anger and aggression. If that region is switched off, you will succeed.

The Surprising Benefits of Anger

Is there any benefit of anger?, that has been the question in my mind when am researching about this article. and YES! there are some benefits of anger… I cant believe it either, below are some of the benefits

1. It Makes Us Focus More on Rewards

We get angry when something isn’t going the way we wanted it to and the feeling reinforces our desire for whatever it is we’re struggling to get whether it’s a job promotion we feel like we deserve or the satisfaction of winning an argument.

Psychologist Simon Laham says this is why anger is a critical part of overcoming adversity. When you’re upset because nothing is going right and you feel like the world is against you, anger is the fuel that drives you to prove everyone wrong. It’s why people feel so motivated to prove their haters wrong.

2. When We’re Angry, We’re More Optimistic

It sounds contradictory, but being angry makes us think more positively about the future. This is because when we’re angry, we feel like we’re in control. 

Researchers put people in fearful and angry moods and then asked them questions about accomplishing goals. The angry participants took up the challenge because they focused on how to achieve the reward, while the fearful participants were held back by the possibility of failure.

3. It Boosts Creativity

Next time you’re angry, invest your energy in working on a difficult task. Studies show that when you’re angry, you experience heightened energy levels and your thought process becomes more flexible, allowing you to come up with more and more original ideas than you can in your neutral state.

5 Ways to be less angry

We all get angry. If you still think that you get angry too often, there are easy ways to improve and relax. Check this list of 5 fascinating ways to reduce it:

  • Breathe slowly: Remember that the catecholamines make us do the opposite;
  • Meditate: Yoga and praying might help you to relax more often;
  • Write down: Yes, a 2008 study shows the positive influence of writing down the reasons for your anger. Maybe you should even start a diary…;
  • Do sports: Doing sports helps you to get rid of the negative energy; and hey, you do something for your fitness, too;
  • Sleep well and enough: it reduces stress, believe me

Anger is not healthy

I am sure that you will think about anger in a different way if I tell you about the health issues. Anger and the heart have a close connection.

As mentioned above, epinephrine and norepinephrine constrict your blood vessels and make your heart pump harder. Thus, people who get angry often live with the risk of getting chronic high blood pressure and heart rhythm disorders.

Moreover, glucose and fatty acids are enriched in your blood. The increased levels of fatty acids can lead to plaques in your arteries. The walls of the arteries thicken and the vessels get narrow because of the accumulation of fats. This can result in a complete blockage of the arteries.

Scientists speak of atherosclerosis which can trigger heart attacks or strokes. Enraged people don’t look healthy to me I now know why…

SUMMARY

See, it is important that you try to reduce angry feelings. Even though it is not that easy, there are therapies and techniques. In doing so, you will keep calm and be anger-free, and live happier and longer.

And don’t forget that sometimes anger is a good thing to express feelings. Often you will feel better afterward. But you should remember not to be angry in an aggressive way.

I hope you learned from this article.

Tell us what things make you angry, and what helps to control your anger in the comments below.

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