Understanding Anger after Stroke

Understanding Anger after Stroke

Understanding anger after stroke is the first step in relinquishing its control over you. In this article, we’ll discuss the different reasons why post-stroke anger occurs and provide some tips for coping with each type.

Anger Due to Grief

A stroke causes different forms of losses for the survivor. Sometimes the losses only affect a few areas, like the loss of fine motor skills. Other times the losses are significant, like hemiplegia (loss of movement on one side of the body), loss of speech, and even loss of vision.

When stroke survivors must cope with their losses, they will often go through the 5 stages of grief. These stages include denial, anger, bargaining, depression, and acceptance. Sometimes the anger phase will last for a few days; other times it can last for years.

How to cope with it:

Since anger is a stage of grief, the only way out of it is through it. The stages of grief don’t usually occur in order, so it’s possible to go from anger to acceptance with the right mindset.

Anger Due to Post-Stroke Depression

Sometimes anger is a symptom of post-stroke depression, which affects more than one third of all stroke survivors. Some of the symptoms of post-stroke depression are anxiety, hopelessness, pessimism, lack of interest, insomnia, irritability, and anger.

How to cope with it:

When anger is a symptom of post-stroke depression, the best way to cope with it is to first address the issue of post-stroke depression. Read our article on post-stroke depression for 5 tips on how to improve the condition.

Anger Due to Brain Damage

Lastly, anger after stroke could be the result of brain damage if the part of the brain responsible for behavior was damaged by the stroke. In this case, biological impairments in the brain could be the cause of angry outbursts or other intense emotions.

How to cope with it:

When anger is out of your control, it’s a good idea to explain to family and friends that your behavior is due to brain damage caused by your stroke. Loved ones will be extremely forgiving of any emotional outbursts if they know that you don’t mean it.

These are the 3 most common causes of anger after stroke, and we hope this article helped you identify the source of your anger so that you can begin the healing process.