Depression is a multifaceted mental health disorder. It is a personal experience that manifests itself in different ways. It may be overwhelming sadness and loneliness for you, but for others, it may be a feeling of emptiness, guilt, or low self-worth. Living with depression is a hard battle that nearly 7.8% of Americans experienced in 2019. Furthermore, depression is more prevalent in women as compared to men.
In contrast, anger is not exactly a mental health disorder but rather an unpleasant emotion experienced by individuals. Everybody has experienced anger that was normal and short-lived. However, maladaptive anger or feeling uncontrollably angry (especially when you’re suffering from depression) hints towards a deeper problem.
At first, anger may not seem connected to depression, but it is quite connected. If you suffer from depression and feel uncontrollable anger, continue reading further to learn how to deal with it.
How Anger and Depression Symptoms Connect
For depression to be diagnosed, an individual must exhibit specific symptoms for at least two weeks, one of which must be either depressed mood or loss of interest or pleasure in life activities. The majority of the symptoms listed below cause clinically significant impairment in social, work, or other important areas of functioning:
- Unintentional weight loss or gain
- Insomnia or excessive sleeping
- Feelings of inadequacy or excessive guilt
- Physical pains or issues, agitation, or irritation
- Fatigue or energy deficiency
- Reduced capacity to reason or concentrate, or indecisiveness
- Recurring death-related thoughts
Anger can manifest in different forms, like irritability, hostility, and anger outbursts.
Irritability is a characteristic of depression, so it's not unexpected that this type of anger is associated with depression. If you have depression, you may find yourself snapping at others over trivial matters or being unable to handle minor disappointments without reacting negatively.
A person with depression who displays their anger outwardly may become hostile toward others, which is a step beyond irritation. This includes not only being irritable but also being visibly furious and hurting anyone around you.
Explosive anger that comes on suddenly and intensely, sometimes known as an anger attack, can be a symptom of depression. These sudden onset episodes may occur in response to irrelevant events.
What Causes Depression and Anger to Coincide?
Anger is a typical feeling among individuals struggling with depression. You could be angry at the world, at events in your past, or even at yourself. The hostility can be powerful and unmanageable, worsening your sadness and interfering with your professional and personal life.
When you listen to your critical inner voice, you might feel much more unhappy and find it difficult to do activities that would help you feel better (for example, spending time with your friends and taking out time for your hobbies).
Staying angry with yourself amplifies your emotions of unhappiness and focuses your thoughts on the negative, making you feel sorry for yourself. With time, this makes you feel less powerful and more depressed.
When you are depressed, you are more likely to be irritated, which might lead to you snapping at everybody else over insignificant incidents. Your depression may increase your emotional distress in the present, making it difficult to control them, even if you regret it later.
You may discover that this is a destructive spiral from which you cannot escape. It may eventually create issues in your personal and professional life.
For example: If you aren't able to handle work stress, you may become furious at your coworkers, supervisors, or even clients.
Can Online Therapy Treat Depression and Anger?
Intense anger outbursts in individuals suffering from depression can be dangerous to their health and those around them. It can result in sudden verbal spats or physical violence.
It is vital to learn to control your anger outbursts to prevent them from intensifying your depression symptoms. Online therapy is an effective way to cope with depression and anger outbursts. Trained and experienced therapists can help you understand your triggers and help you adopt effective coping mechanisms. They will assist you in becoming more compassionate towards yourself and teach you anger management skills.
Ready to Reach Out for Help?Try Online Therapy
The following are a few therapeutic approaches your therapist might take to help you deal with depression and anger outbursts:
Cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT)
CBT is a type of psychotherapy that works by assisting you in determining what causes your anger and how you typically respond to it. Then, with the assistance of a therapist, you discover new strategies to deal with rage. This sort of treatment may also be beneficial in resolving anger brought on by emotional trauma.
Depression patients are frequently unaware that their thoughts are twisted. CBT for depression sheds light on how your ideas are causing you to feel terrible. During your online therapy, your therapist will teach you how to rearrange your thought processes so that you can view your life and perceive things more positively. They will assist you in identifying alternative behaviors from which to choose so that you don’t always revert to a known but problematic behavior.
Interpersonal therapy focuses on how symptoms are related to an individual's relationships, particularly with family and peers, through treating interpersonal issues. The immediate aim is symptom reduction and social adjustment improvement. The long-term goal is to empower individuals suffering from depression to make the necessary changes on their own.
Psychodynamic therapy is a treatment in which an individual's past is examined to improve their current state. During psychodynamic treatment, you will become conscious of repressed thoughts and feelings. You will bring these subconscious parts into your present awareness to address unsolved problems and feelings.
What Can I Do on My Own?
There are a few self-help options to help you effectively deal with depression and anger outbursts. These techniques or self-help options cannot single-handedly treat depression and anger. Hence, they should accompany online therapy and medication, not replace them.
It can be tough to feel motivated to work hard when you're depressed, but exercising can help you feel better. This is because exercise causes your body to release endorphins, a hormone that makes us happy for a brief time.
Spend time doing things you enjoy
It is critical to set aside time for oneself. Indulge in activities you enjoy, even if they are as basic as going for a walk or reading books. Having something pleasant to look forward to could also help lift your spirits.
Deep breathing assists in bringing your body back to a state of calm by increasing the flow of oxygen in your body. This aids in gaining control of the fight or flight response that occurs when your anger is activated. If you prefer deep breathing, you might also like to try mindfulness or yoga to help you cope with depression-related anger. Practicing yoga may assist in relieving stress and enhance your mood by releasing endorphins.
Journaling is a creative way to track your thoughts and feelings. It is personal and provides an outlet for expressing. You can write down your emotions, triggers, and impact in your journal. Over time, you can identify your triggers and learn how to cope with them.
Self-compassion is a caring response to your suffering that goes against your self-criticism. It can also increase motivation to use self-help practices. Start by picturing yourself as if you were a sympathetic observer. From the outside, observe how your emotions are hurting you and how they are reflected in your appearance. Allow a warm sensation of compassion and a desire to help arise inside you. Consider whether there are any other things you may tell yourself to motivate yourself to cheer up. All of these things will help you progressively quit expressing your anger inwardly.
Though anger isn’t a mental health issue in itself, it can make other mental health disorders like depression worse. It is best to seek therapy to control and overcome the anger and depression symptoms. Online counseling makes it easier for you.
Online counseling is flexible, affordable, and convenient. Furthermore, it offers anonymity to those who do not want to reveal themselves. It also makes it possible to get the best therapist after looking through the profiles of many. Online counseling breaks geographical barriers and allows you to speak with a therapist across your state. Online therapy for depression and anger management, just like in-person therapy, places you at the center.
At DoMental, we strive to make therapy affordable and accessible. Our professionals value confidentiality and create a safe environment for you, enabling you to express yourself freely. Furthermore, they ensure that the sessions are designed specially to suit your needs.