Anger and Depression

No one seeks counseling or psychotherapy because they have persistent and severe feelings of joy and happiness. People don’t read psychology blogs looking for help because their dog ignores them.

People begin sensing there might be a problem when they find themselves in a bad mood more often than not. Waking up and staying chronically dissatisfied is a good sign that something isn’t right. You might be experiencing depression. Another sure sign is not wanting to go to work or school, or you avoid certain activities.

Many Ways to Express Anger

Along with a bad mood are varying degrees of anger. It could be that you are angry because you are in a bad mood, or the opposite – your anger could be the cause of your bad mood. Anger isn’t necessarily a loud, demanding tirade. Anger can express itself in a number of ways.

Anger can exist in the form of…

  • Pessimism, as in taking a negative view or expecting the worst;
  • Cynicism, believing that people are only doing or saying things for selfish reasons;
  • Hopelessness, thinking that you have less than a promising future;
  • Bitterness, being disagreeable, stubborn, unreasonable, or acting harshly; or
  • Just by talking passive-aggressively.

The mere fact that you are angry can cause a bad mood.

Likewise, if you are suffering from certain types of mood disorders such as depression or bipolar disorder, it won’t take very much for you to become angry. Many people suffer undiagnosed and untreated mood disorder.

Anger and Your Health

You probably believe the only time you are angry is when you are expressing it in ways that other people can see, hear or feel. Otherwise you aren’t expressing it. This is not the case. All anger is expressed, but not necessarily outwardly. You might not look or sound angry but your blood pressure knows the truth. Your migraine headache knows what caused it. Your stomach and gastrointestinal system knows. Anger, like stress, can cause serious health problems.

Research confirms that dissatisfied workers who suppress their anger experience the highest blood-pressure levels by far, placing them at high risk for potentially lethal heart attack and stroke.

Brain Chemical Deficiencies

A link between anger and depression exists with the brain chemical serotonin, which is a neurotransmitter. High levels of anger and aggression could be a “serotonin deficiency disorder,” according to researchers. Numerous psychiatric studies show that a chemical imbalance or shortfall in serotonin is similarly a root cause of depression. The same shortage of serotonin is also associated with smoking, increased appetite and weight gain, and alcohol consumption, all symptoms of both toxic (outward) anger and depression (inward anger).

If you are concerned that your bad moods are a sign of something more serious, like depressed mood, you should seek the advice of a psychiatrist because they are familiar with depression, brain-chemical interactions and medications. Search our mental-health resources for help in your area.

This report is not a diagnosis. We hope this information can guide you toward improving your life.

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