Emotions are divided into two, namely positive emotions (such as happiness) and negative emotions (such as anger). These two emotions are natural human responses to certain situations. Anyone has the right to express the emotions they feel, as long as they are not excessive. Excessive emotions not only have a negative impact on yourself, but also on others.
One emotion that needs to be controlled is anger. The reason is because excessive anger can be a sign of a personality disorder. This disorder is called Intermittent Explosive Disorder (IED).
What Causes Intermittent Explosive Disorder (IED)?
Anger is a natural response when someone is faced with a disappointing situation. Unfortunately, not everyone can control these negative emotions. In fact, people with IED tend to get angry easily over “trivial” issues and show it in an exaggerated way. People with Intermittent Explosive Disorder IED may slam things around them, swear, and scream just to express the anger they feel.
The cause of IED is thought to stem from abnormalities in the brain’s mechanism to regulate the production of serotonin (the happy hormone) and cortisol (the stress hormone). This mental disorder affects the emotional level of the sufferer. Other factors suspected to be the cause of Intermittent Explosive Disorder (IED) are genetic factors, environmental factors and the habit of harboring anger.
Why Do Some People Have Difficulty Controlling Anger?
If the outburst of anger that arises is not due to an IED, then the following factors can be the reason a person has difficulty controlling anger:
- Lack of sleep
A study from the Journal of Applied Social Psychology explains that lack of sleep makes it difficult for someone to think clearly and control emotions. Experts say when a person is sleep deprived, there is an increase in the activity of the amygdala, the part of the brain that regulates emotions. This condition encourages the emergence of negative emotions (such as anger). In addition, it also makes it difficult for you to control the negative feelings that arise.
- Stress and Depression
Recent studies have shown that mild stress can interfere with a person’s ability to control emotions. The reason is that when stress occurs, the part of the brain that plays an important role in cognitive function (prefrontal cortex) becomes sensitive. Depression makes a person irritable because it is difficult to control emotions. Sufferers also tend to think negatively about the surrounding environment.
- Health Problems
Health problems such as hyperthyroidism can make a person irritable. The reason is, excessive thyroid hormone levels can make a person nervous and difficult to concentrate. This affects his ability to control his emotions. Statin drugs that are consumed can reduce serotonin in the body. Serotonin levels cause depression and emotional susceptibility.
How to Control Anger?
If you’re having trouble controlling your anger, here’s something you can try:
- Relaxation Exercise
This exercise is done by taking a deep breath in through your nose, then exhaling slowly through your mouth. This method aims to calm the nervous system, improve focus, and reduce stress and feelings of emotion.
- Changing Reactions
Instead of showing anger in a raised voice, you can learn to show anger in a wise way. For example, say what you feel like, “I don’t like it when you act like that” or “I think you can do better than this” and other ways that don’t hurt yourself or others.
- Tell Others
There is nothing wrong with telling your feelings to other people such as friends or family. You can tell them about things that make you upset and angry. This will help relieve your feelings and reduce the anger you feel.
If the methods above have not been able to control the emotions you feel, talk to your doctor immediately.