An angry drunk is how many people jokingly refer to someone that becomes unpredictable or violent after drinking alcohol. The range of an angry drunk can be from someone that becomes mean or a bit shouty, to someone who is far too aggressive for the setting. Hostile behaviour such as this can be a real problem and often causes other people to feel unsafe or could lead to serious consequences. If you think that you may be prone to anger when drunk, it’s important to recognise this so that you can then learn how to stop this behaviour in the future.
What Causes an Angry Drunk?
Alcohol is a depressant that impairs decision-making, leaving you with little self-control and a lack of concern for consequences. Plus, excessive drinking can result in mental health or other emotional issues. It’s no wonder that consuming alcohol may end up with excessive feelings of anger that then turn into violent actions.
It has also been found that alcohol as a substance decreases activity in the prefrontal cortex. This part of the brain relates to inhibition and working memory, which manifests as increased hostility and decreased self-awareness. Once you add reduced emotional control and increased impulsivity to this whirlpool of issues, this can end up in a dangerous situation for you and for others.
Signs and Symptoms of an Angry Drunk
- Difficulty controlling your drinking.
- Unable to control your temper.
- Inability to find non-violent solutions when conflict arises.
- Difficulty avoiding conflict.
- Throwing things or lashing out when angry.
- Struggling to calm down.
- Anger problems even when sober.
- Regretting what you said or did whilst angry.
How to Stop Being an Angry Drunk
If this sounds like you, these are some constructive steps you can take to help you cope with your anger:
- Start building mindfulness into your routine.
- Identify your triggers.
- Find healthy, safe ways to manage your triggers.
- Consider therapy - there are lots of different types out there!
- Reduce or stop drinking
How to Tell if You Have a Problem
If you want to stop drinking but feel unable to, this may be a sign of a deeper problem or addiction. If your aggression is linked to an addiction, it can be even more difficult to manage. You might have a problem if:
- You find your tolerance for alcohol increasing.
- You’re experiencing cravings for alcohol.
- You want to drink more and more often.
- You’ve started lying about your drinking habits.
- Your drinking has started to affect your work or family obligations.
I Think I Need Alcohol Addiction Treatment: What Next?
If you’re experiencing any of these issues or are having trouble controlling your anger, no matter whether you’re sober or not, you may need help. Admitting that you need alcohol addiction treatment and making the choice to reach out when you’re struggling can be difficult – especially if making progress means confronting your addiction.
When you’re ready, there are support systems available to help you make the vital first steps in taking control. Here at New Leaf Recovery, we offer support and a range of alcohol addiction treatment options. We want to help you turn over a new leaf. Get in touch today to find help and start your road to recovery.