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Heart Help: Control Your Anger

By Sara Butler

Anger is a pretty powerful emotion and too much of it can definitely take a toll on the body. In fact, recent research through the National Institutes of Health has revealed that anger and hostility are linked to heart disease. How is that possible? Well, anger is related to stress and it triggers reactions in the body that puts stress and strain on the heart. Here are a few tips to help you stay healthy by keeping your anger under control.

Techniques to Reduce Anger

Stress and anger can rear their ugly heads in many different situations. When you feel yourself going there, you can work to reduce the stress on your body by:

  • Relaxing – You may want to study up on deep breathing and relaxation techniques in order to keep your reactions under control. Also, try relaxing imagery or exercise to help you cope.
  • Cognitive restructuring – Sometimes you have to work to change the way you think about the situation. It’s not easy, but if you can work toward changing your view, then it can help keep your emotions in check. Acknowledge the anger you’re feeling, but don’t let it rule. Use rational thoughts to counterbalance the angry ones.
  • Communicating – If you’re quick to jump to conclusions about things, then you’re probably quick to anger about them, too. Make sure you understand a situation fully so you know if it warrants an angry response or not.
  • Laughing – One of the best stress relievers out there is laughter and it can be used to diffuse a tense, angry situation. Plus, laughter forces you to stop and look at the situation in another way, helping you to refocus and solve the problems calmly.
  • Changing the environment – The environment you’re in can contribute to anger. At home or at work, you can be easily triggered by people or situations you find frustrating. Schedule time away from the environment if you can and use that time to reduce the stress you experience in relation to it.

Warning signs

You have to learn to recognize the warning signs of anger and stress so you can seek to control your response. You may experience signs of building tension such as:

  • Feeling restless
  • Increased heart rate
  • Racing pulse 

Once you recognize the signals, then you can work to curb the negative emotions you’re experiencing. This can also provide you with the opportunity to change how you’re behaving, so take up a new hobby that helps to relieve stress such as meditation or yoga!

If you have a lot of anger-related tension in the muscles of your neck and shoulders, make sure you bring that up to the chiropractor at The Joint! They can help solve that side of your stress so you can work on the rest!

To learn more about your health and wellness, see your local chiropractor at The Joint Chiropractic in Fairfax, Va. 


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