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The Link Between Anger and Alcoholism

Person feeling the link between anger and alcoholism

What’s the link between anger and alcohol addiction? Anger is natural, but excessive anger can fuel addictions and mask problems like alcohol abuse. Over time, anger may turn into a harmful coping mechanism, affecting mental health and relationships. Combined with alcoholism, it significantly risks physical health. Contact Ashwood Recovery online or call 888.341.3607 today to learn more about our alcohol addiction treatment options, which may include approaches to overcoming alcohol abuse causing anger and other adverse consequences.

Understanding the Link Between Anger and Alcoholism

The link between anger and alcoholism is cyclical—they can exacerbate each other if left unchecked. Addressing and letting go of anger is vital in the Alcoholics Anonymous (AA) 12-step approach, which involves a moral self-inventory and overcoming personal flaws.

The Anger Iceberg

Understanding the link between anger and alcoholism involves recognizing how emotions influence human biology and the negative impact of anger on our lives and relationships. Think of anger as an iceberg, where what’s visible, like stern looks or raised voices, is just the tip. Below the surface, hidden emotions such as grief, fear, shame, and embarrassment often fuel anger. Anger is rarely an isolated emotion, shedding light on its connection to alcoholism.

People with alcohol addiction often feel out of control, leading to feelings of shame, frustration, or depression, which can manifest as anger. Similarly, those overwhelmed by anger might use alcohol for relief, only to find it intensifies their inner conflict.

A Two-Way Street

The anger iceberg illustrates the link between anger and alcoholism. Alcohol affects the brain, reducing control over actions and emotions, making anger harder to manage, and often intensifying it when drunk. Key points of the anger-alcoholism link include:

  • Alcohol often excuses aggressive behavior
  • It causes tunnel vision, increasing the likelihood of anger
  • Society is more accepting of aggression when someone is drunk
  • Alcohol lowers the fear of consequences for angry actions
  • It impairs brain function, making anger management harder

Alcoholics Anonymous highlights anger as a major relapse trigger, with co-founder Bill Wilson noting, “Resentment is the top offender. It destroys more alcoholics than anything else.” Addressing both addiction and anger is crucial.

How to Deal with Anger and Alcohol Addiction

Anger often leads to excessive drinking, which can then amplify anger issues. Without breaking this cycle, it can damage both you and those around you. Addressing both anger and drinking is crucial, with professional help highly recommended.

How to Address Alcoholism in a Loved One

Handling an angry alcoholic can be challenging, as they often deal with a deep-seated anger that escalates with drinking. For managing anger and alcoholism, consider the following tips:

  • Acknowledge alcoholism as a disease
  • Avoid responding with anger
  • Prioritize self-care
  • Communicate effectively
  • Promote professional help, like therapy or rehab for alcoholics

Anger, whether aggressive or passive, harms relationships. Seeking help is essential, but remember, managing anger and recovering from alcoholism requires effort.

How to Seek Help for Co-Occurring Anger and Alcohol Addiction

If you find it hard to control your drinking or anger, consider professional help. Support groups or addiction counseling can tackle the underlying issues effectively. Various methods are available to manage anger and alcohol addiction. Professional help is vital.

If formal rehab seems too much, starting with an AA support group can help. These groups provide a supportive, non-judgmental space to discuss issues, an important step in recovery.

Connect with Ashwood Recovery to Start Co-Occurring Disorders Treatment in Idaho Today

Ashwood Recovery, located in Boise, Idaho, provides outpatient treatment for co-occurring disorders, individual alcohol counseling, and family counseling. Alcoholism can lead to anger toward loved ones, among other issues. Whatever your struggle, we support you through the consequences and begin your recovery journey.

Unsure if your issue is with alcohol or anger? Take our alcoholism quiz today to find out if you need professional help. If you have more questions about the link between anger and alcoholism—or what treatment looks like—do not hesitate to contact us online or call 888.341.3607 today.