Tuesday, July 24, 2018

Anger-Memory Link, 2

Unresolved anger triggers the release of adrenalin that can interfere with quality sleep, which can negatively impact your health. A study published in a journal called Social, Psychological, and Personality Science points out the importance of resolving anger before you go to sleep. Going to bed mad worsens the anger, which can make it harder for you to manage negative memories appropriately. Moreover, memories are consolidated during sleep, i.e., moved from short-term to long-term memory. Once consolidated, the angry memories tend to retain their emotional reactivity and over time may become resistant to change. This can have implications for recovering from conditions such as Posttraumatic Stress Disorder as well as dealing effectively with other painful emotional memories—crucial for good mental health. Even staying awake for a while after a traumatic experience may help to prevent the formation of traumatic aversive memories. Resolving anger before going to sleep may prevent anger memories from becoming consolidated in long-term memory, thereby gaining strength and becoming resistant to change. Bottom line? Anger responses are learned so healthier responses can be relearned. Stop going to bed mad! Your brain and body (and loved ones) will thank you.

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