Repressed anger: health effects

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Robert Maurer
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Repressed anger: health effects

Sometimes, behind an anxious or sad mood, there is repressed anger. In the long run, it ends up manifesting itself in some way, usually highly negative.

Last update: January 20, 2022

Repressed anger is a self-destructive condition, as well as expressing it in excess. Letting this emotion take control is just as damaging as not releasing the energy it produces.

Neither fueling nor containing that energy, like someone sitting on a full suitcase to exert strength, are usually successful strategies.



We have to learn to distinguish between suppressed anger and well-managed anger. First of all, you need to start identifying the trigger; it could be an external event, such as an attack, but also an internal one, such as the memory of an attack. It often comes down to frustration or fear.

The solution is not to stop feeling anger, but to manage it properly when it occurs and get to the bottom of the matter. Ignoring anger, or any other feeling, is not a healthy choice.

Avoidance not only does not solve the problem, it often increases it. An important part of personal development is just dealing with what it feels like and knowing what to do with it.

So what does this all mean? Well, it suggests that holding in anger hurts, that an occasional outburst is fine and that it doesn't matter so much whether you get angry or not, but how you get angry and how often. "

-Claudia Hammond-

The suppressed anger

Repressed anger occurs when we deliberately stop expressing this emotion. It is common due to prevailing social patterns, fear of others' opinions, or other reasons.


In this case, the energy of anger does not dissipate, it is contained under such pressure that it can become very dangerous at the moment of the explosion. Furthermore, it is possible for this to happen not just once, but several times.


For example, in the case of relationships based on intimidation, be it love, work, family or other nature. When the source of anger is a person to whom you have a continuous bond, it is normal for a succession of conflicts to occur that creates a strong repressed anger.

This feeling can be repressed, but that doesn't mean it will disappear. Very often it happens that thehostility it tends to backfire eventually causing psychological or physical symptoms. A person can get sick from repressed anger.

The consequences of repressed anger

Anger doesn't exist only in the mind. When anger is experienced, a series of physiological effects also occur that alter the organism. Among the most visible changes are the following:

  • Blood pressure rises.
  • The heart rate accelerates.
  • It increases the production of adrenaline, which alters the physiological balance.
  • There is an imbalance in the immune system.
  • Muscles tighten.
  • Breathing accelerates.

All this, especially if experienced frequently, can make the person more prone to developing certain diseases. On the other hand, by exploding in a fit of anger, self-control is lost.

Repressed anger takes longer to dissipate. It tends to be prolonged and, at the same time, to keep the organism in the state described.


It is proper to the human being to express himself, therefore any repression is counterproductive. Anger will eventually find a way to manifest itself, usually through the body.


Process the anger

It's not bad to be angry. It is a natural response to a threat and is part of the survival instinct. However, the anger can also become a pattern when the person lives on the defensive.


The same happens when intolerance is made a flag to overcome insecurities. Repressed anger can lead to severe depression.

The anger that we have not expressed is returned, by rebound, and ends up haunting us. Under these conditions, the person begins to feel bad and lose interest in everything. Often this is a consequence of the anger being caused by a much loved person, which is why it is considered unacceptable to show aggressive expressions towards her.


It is important to learn to accept your feelings. Telling yourself "I'm angry" is the beginning. Feeling anger is generally positive; it is a warning sign and it is important to listen to it.

The next step is process this signal so that it does not become a detrimental factor for others or for themselves. Nobody knows at first, but it can be learned at any time.

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