The Connection Between Alcohol And Anger

When we have that internal wall between us and our anger, that’s when we start to experience depression. Many of us got messages as children that it was not nice or it was not good to feel or express anger.

Different types of alcohol withdrawal can help illuminate why these symptoms are occurring and how to manage them. Speaking with a physician can also help address these uncomfortable feelings and find relief.

This group is for individuals who have engaged in multiple treatment pathways throughout their recovery journey to discuss persevering through challenges, and finding new tools to empower progress. The addictive cycle doesn’t start with using alcohol or drugs. The key is to take care of those feelings within yourself, to be your own friend, to be your own counselor. That is what helps you to heal; that is what actually breaks the addictive cycle. It’s because you’re not willing to feel those emotions, that anger and that hurt, and your energy is getting trapped. Beneath every feeling of anger there is a hurt that is present.

Alcohol Can Unleash Angry Emotions Or Abuse

If you feel like you have a pattern of being aggressive when drinking alcohol, you should understand how your behavior can impact yourself and others. Furthermore, alcohol can make you focus too much on specific words or behaviors from other people. If you see someone cut in front of you in line for the bathroom at a bar or concert, you may react aggressively when you otherwise wouldn’t mind. When drinking, it becomes increasingly challenging to interpret information logically.

alcoholism and anger

Don’t sugarcoat it, she says, by using words like “irritated” or phrases like “oh I’m feeling off right now.” Name it for what it is. The study was supported by grants from the National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism and from the National Center for Research Resources. Bushman said the results should serve as a warning to people who live only in the moment without thinking too much about the future. Those in the placebo group had mean blood alcohol levels that didn’t exceed 0.015, meaning they had very little alcohol in their systems and were well below standards of intoxication. The Social Drunk – Sober introverts who become drunk socialites, eager to talk to the world.

Therapy Is Personal

For alcoholics, that question may come up on a daily, weekly, or monthly basis. There are different types of alcoholism, but one of the biggest indicators of an issue is when the person wants to quit drinking but is unable to.

  • Alcohol abuse can instill a false sense of power that often results in angry outbursts.
  • Studies have also shown that a third of daughters of alcoholics experienced physical abuse and a fifth sexual abuse – up to four times higher than in non-alcoholic homes.
  • These days, people who misuse alcohol can enroll in various treatment programs, whether you choose the 12-step approach or decide to enter residential treatment.
  • By seeking recovery for problems with alcohol and anger, you can work toward a more positive life.
  • Males who abuse alcohol, experience and express more anger than males who do not abuse alcohol.

Or you might have grown up in a hostile environment, and see aggression as the only way to handle difficult circumstances. It’s not always easy to address problematic drinking behaviors. However, with care and empathy, it’s often possible to have a productive discussion, and help someone move forward. When provoked, an angry drunk looks for ways to expel their anger. So if you act agitated, it can fuel their anger and worsen the conflict.

Recovering Alcoholics And Anger

This can include anger at oneself for returning to drinking, or using anger to mask worries about being able to achieve our goals. This can be seen in negative self-statements, blaming of others, and denying support in trying to re-establish sobriety. There are multiple reasons why you may experience increased feelings of anger after quitting alcohol – let’s explore three of the most common. Many of us need to learn how to manage anger and how to heal from it, how to feel it and then let it go and move on. Often what manifests as alcoholism or other forms of addiction comes back to an inability to feel or to manage your anger.

However, this health news only begins to explain the inner workings of an angry drunkard. Alcohol tends to interfere with cognitive functional abilities. Therefore, this makes it more difficult for an intoxicated person to consider their options and solve problems in constructive, effective ways. When an addict enters recovery for alcohol abuse, they usually struggle with anger problems and emotional regulation. The early months of sobriety can be an emotional rollercoaster filled with many highs and lows.

alcoholism and anger

Actually, it is rather scary how easily one can damage his/her brain and become easily angered. Take our short alcohol quiz to learn where you fall on the drinking spectrum and if you might benefit from quitting or cutting back on alcohol. If any of the above is true, it may be time to quit or cut back on your alcohol consumption.

Alcohol And The Brain

Alcohol can provoke different emotional responses for different people. If you have a natural tendency to be angry, drinking alcohol may cause you to become aggressive. All the help his young daughters and his wife tried to get him, from detox programmes, to rehab, to psychiatric sessions, had failed. In cases where drinking or other drug use is present, anger is often the symptom of the drug’s attack on the brain. Often, the more and more a person uses drugs, the angrier he or she becomes. If you often drink to excess—especially if you often black out or fail to remember what you did while drunk—changing your behavior can be difficult. You may also have a pattern of using alcohol to cope with stressful situations, or as an excuse to expel pent-up anger.

However, long-term alcoholism can cause serious mental and physical health complications, so it should be treated as soon as possible. Even though alcoholism can come with dangerous risks, full treatment and recovery is possible. Sixty-eight percent of the dependent and abstainers’ perceived anger as negative emotion and 76% in control perceived it as negative. Majority of the dependent and abstainers attributed it to personal reasons . 60% of the dependent and abstainers experienced it significant impact on family and workplace area .

alcoholism and anger

Relapse is prevalent, with almost sixty percent of people having one major episode a year after they complete treatment. But, anger problems are often cited as one of the main culprits of relapse among recovering alcoholics. In the end, solving a drinking problem isn’t solely about the absence of substances, but rather a complete overhaul of your lifestyle and behaviors. It’s essential to find new healthy habits that fuel your soul and give you a new purpose. Individuals can intensify their aggression or are at risk of experimenting with other drugs for a “better” high. Anger is both a cause and consequence of addiction, and unhealthy anger management can be a major obstacle to successful recovery.

Shame and guilt surrounding past events can often morph into anger. Feeling regretful can cause us to self-isolate or get defensive. If our past drinking habits have hurt those around us, we might be angry with ourselves, and act with anger towards others as a result. So, remember that when you don’t express your anger and when you don’t express your hurt – when you cut yourself off from those feelings – that’s when you start the addictive cycle. The key is to allow yourself and learn how to let yourself feel your anger in a healthy way, to feel your hurt in a healthy way.


Those who are dependent on alcohol should participate in alcohol addiction treatmentto break the cycle. Remember, quitting a substance cold turkey can lead to health issues, so it’s best to enlist professional help. Many people that live with mental health disorders also struggle with drug or alcohol addictions. While someone that has a mental health disorder is participating in an alcohol or drug rehab program, the provider will usually address the addiction and the mental health disorder at the same time. When recovering alcoholics compare their old heavy drinking lifestyle to their sober lifestyle, there can be negative consequences. As a result, addicts experience feelings of discontent, emptiness and often are full of anguish.

  • When a person struggles with both alcoholism and anger management problems, the issues exacerbate each other.
  • It’s because you’re not willing to feel those emotions, that anger and that hurt, and your energy is getting trapped.
  • Try not to take anything they say personally, as their inhibitions are down, and they’re probably not entirely aware of their words and actions.
  • The data for the present study were taken from the project work on correlates of anger among alcohol users, funded by center for addiction medicine, NIMHANS, Bengaluru, Karnataka, India.
  • Relapsers group differ from the abstainer group in relation to the presence of trait and state anger.

Soon, they will find new ways to address their problems and insecurities, without having to turn to substances. Counselors can offer the professional support and guidance that struggling substance abusers need to turn their lives around. To find out more or to book a counseling session, simply use our search tool, browse the huge database of policy approved professionals and contact the counselor most suited to your needs.

You don’t engage in excessive drinking or drugs and do things that you don’t want to do. If you’ve ever experienced a sudden surge of overwhelming anxiety and fear then you’re familiar with the feeling of having a panic attack. You can learn how to take down the internal walls you’ve put up around anger and thereby relieve the mental and emotional pain that leads you to use. Work– the effects of alcoholism, including depression, illness and cognitive impairment could cause work standards to drop and result in unemployment. Unable to control your drinking – you crave a drink every day and when you start you find it difficult to stop. Understanding your own drinking habits will help you recognize where you might need to change your habits.

The Link Between Alcohol And Anger

Also, I don’t want to give the impression that unresolved emotions like anger cause alcoholic drinking. It’s the other way around — alcoholism usually prevents a person from dealing with emotions like anger. If, in recovery, anger is not managed, it’ll likely lead a person back to drinking. If unresolved resentments still churn in the person trying to stop drinking, it’s a trigger for relapse. Meditation can help clients to relax physical tension, become more self-aware, and work toward creating a healthy mind-body balance. Other holistic methods are often used during a comprehensive addiction and anger management treatment program as adjunctive, or complementary, treatment methods. Massage therapy can help to relieve physical tension and therefore promote mental clarity.

Being willing to accept guidance and help opens the door for you to experience brighter days tomorrow. If being angry after alcohol consumption is a common occurrence, you should seek professional help.

Find the parts of you that have been lost along the way when you experience our secluded safe haven of rehabilitation. Spend your time re-learning who you are, connecting with the world around you, and setting achievable goals that your team of clinicians will help you reach both during and after your stay. Magnolia Ranch alcoholism and anger is not a respite – it is a habitat of remarkable rehabilitation. All content created by Alcohol Rehab Help is sourced from current scientific research and fact-checked by an addiction counseling expert. However, the information provided by Alcohol Rehab Help is not a substitute for professional treatment advice.