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Chemical Reasons You Might Experience More Anger in Early Recovery

Oct 20, 2017 | Mental Health, Recovery

Entering recovery after a period of addiction will normally create highs and lows that are similar to what a roller coaster looks like and feels like. One minute you are up really high and feeling on top of the world and next you are really low and feeling depressed. Desensitizing yourself with drugs and alcohol can suppress true feelings that can come out in full force once you get sober.

Anger is one the emotions that is commonly expressed in recovery. Putting substances in your body helps to delay the inevitable feelings that may have led you to your addiction in the first place. The emotions that were once soothed by anesthetizing yourself, suddenly awake from being dormant which may lead to irrational anger.

You might experience more anger in early recovery because of all the changes that are taking place within your body. Abusing substances as a crutch to deal with life and then abruptly having to deal with life sober, can take a toll on your mental, physical, and spiritual faculties due to the implicit change that is occurring.

The brain’s chemical imbalance due to addiction of mind-altering substances also plays a significant role to why you may display bigger bouts of anger. Since the brain is no longer rewarded with dopamine that the drugs have provided it with, withdrawals and a negative emotional state tends to be brought about. Instead of the pleasing dopamine in the brain, adrenaline becomes a regular attendee within the chemical balancing of the brain.

When you get mad, your body has a physical reaction. You may feel your temperature rise, feel your heart pounding, or have sweaty palms. This flight or fight response also creates dilation of your pupils and increases your blood pressure. Adrenaline, or epinephrine, is the chemical that infiltrates the brain when anger is present. The amygdala of the brain, which are involved in experiencing emotions, signals the front lobe that authorizes neurotransmitters to show signs of anger.

Norepinephrine, also called an adrenaline rush, makes its appearance in the brain when anger is displayed. This adrenaline rush is responsible for whether you will make a good decision or a bad decision in handling situations that involve anger. Trying to control the amount of adrenaline is possible by leading a healthier lifestyle in recovery. Stress levels, diet, exercise, and sleep are all elements that can dictate the chemical impact on anger in early recovery.


You deserve to be ADORNED in your recovery. Life skills, coping tools, education, holistic healing, and a sober support system will help you gain long term sobriety. Serenity Oaks Wellness Center offers a comprehensive treatment program for recovering from drug and alcohol addiction. Call us today for information: 844-720-6847

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At Serenity Oaks Wellness Center, we offer residential detox and addiction treatment with a wide range of modalities to address the needs of all our clients. Our high staff-to-client ratio ensures everyone that enters our facility gets the personal attention they need and deserve for a safe and successful detox process. To learn more about our program, contact Serenity Oaks Wellness Center today at 844-720-6847.
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