Many people struggle with anger issues. Sometimes, dealing with the effects of difficult emotions like anger leads to them abusing substances. In other cases, people can develop anger issues as a direct result of substance abuse, with many feeling responsible for their uncontrollable feelings of anger. Rehabilitation addresses these issues through a variety of treatment approaches including cognitive-behavioral therapy, holistic treatments, and counseling.
Anger is a natural feeling that everyone experiences from time to time. However, for some people, it can trigger substance abuse. One of the important aspects of comprehensive rehab is to address the issues driving drug and/or alcohol use. In many cases, anger is reported to be one of the main reasons people turn to substance use but where does anger come from? Here we take a look at the roots of anger and how they can be addressed to allow for a healthy recovery from addiction.
Keeping a Healthy Mind During Recovery
Generally speaking, anger is considered to indicate one of the following:
- Your essential self needs something it can’t have
- Something your essential self can’t tolerate is present
In other words, it is your body telling you that you are angry until you address the problem that is causing it. The responses to anger are either to move towards something more positive or further away from something uncomfortable.
Naturally, there are different levels of anger depending on the circumstances. Some people develop anger over a period of time, perhaps when they have felt something unjust has happened to them. Repressing anger is extremely unhealthy and often the reason people turn to substance abuse.
Because addiction is a relapsing illness, it is important that individuals in recovery continue to receive effective therapy for the areas they need support. In the cases of a person who struggles to deal with feelings of anger, anger management therapy is suggested.
How Alcohol Addiction Treatment Helps with Managing Anger in Recovery
For those people in rehab suffering from anger management issues, treatment and therapies can provide the following tools:
– A way of maintaining repetitive focus: When in a stressful situation that could spark an angry reaction, it is often helpful to focus on a repetitive activity that encourages the person to calm down. Breathing exercises or repeating a positive “mantra” are examples of techniques taught in rehab that are effective in empowering people to control their own angry responses.
– Relaxation techniques: mindfulness practices like yoga and meditation provide people in rehab with the ability to achieve a completely relaxed frame of mind. This is invaluable in managing angry moods as it silences negative internal dialogue that would otherwise fuel the person’s anger.
– Finding a distraction: Much of the emphasis of rehab is one preparing people for a healthy life in sobriety. This often means ridding themselves of friends and activities that enable them to abuse substances and replacing them with more positive lifestyle attributes. When someone in recovery is distracted from thoughts of using or has a more healthy approach to difficult emotions, they are more likely to achieve long-term sobriety.
– Replace anger with a different emotion: Cognitive behavioral therapy or CBT is an approach that seeks to identify the negative thought processes driving addictive behavior, replacing them with more positive attitudes and behaviors. This enables people to respond better in situations that are difficult or stressful.
There are many reasons people develop the illness of addiction and everyone has their own individual story. For this reason, the best route to recovery is through a personalized treatment program that addresses the individual’s specific needs. For people managing anger and addiction issues at the same time, CASA Recovery can provide a refuge where they can learn to live a healthy and fulfilling substance-free life. For more information about anger management in recovery, contact us here at CASA Recovery in confidence today.