If you’re among the fifth of American adults who lives with mental health problems, it’s easy to feel angry. Depression, anxiety, addiction, and personality disorders are well-known for making those who suffer from them irritable and angry.
Luckily, though, there are ways that you can cope with these problems and relieve some of this stress. Rage rooms are one of the ways that you can let out your anger and feel better in the short term. Read on to learn what a rage room is and how it can help you to manage your emotions.
What Is a Rage Room?
Rage rooms are spaces that have been set up with breakable objects. People can book them and go in to smash and break these items with no consequences. Participants are often given a weapon like a sledgehammer so they can break through walls, but there are some items that can be thrown and broken without a weapon as well.
Those who use rage rooms- sometimes called anger rooms- also are not forced to clean up after themselves. The idea is that blowing off steam will be a form of cathartic relief. These rooms are popping up from coast to coast across America so that people can have a more healthy outlet for their frustration than screaming at others or punching walls would be.
Are Rage Rooms Good for People?
The purpose of rage rooms is to provide short-term relief for their frustrations. But are these rooms beneficial in the long run?
The somewhat dissatisfying answer is that it depends.
Who Can Benefit From a Rage Room?
For some people, rage rooms are an amazing outlet for their anger. These individuals usually are simply stressed out from work, relationships, a lack of sleep, or meetings. They don’t necessarily need to have underlying mental health issues.
People who enjoy rage rooms sometimes might incorporate them into their routine and leave feeling better having smashed some stuff. Some benefits of an anger room include:
- You get to reap the mental health benefits of having fun
- You get the chance to try something new
- You can bring your friends to an anger room and have a bonding experience there
The Disadvantages of Rage Rooms
However, many mental health professionals have doubts about the effectiveness of rage rooms. They acknowledge that smashing things with no consequences is a fun experience- this is indisputable. However, experts do not believe it to be a good alternative to at-home or professional anger management treatment.
There isn’t a lot of research about rage rooms to go on, but there have been studies suggesting that they do more harm than good. The idea behind rage rooms isn’t new. We’ve all been so angry that we want to smash something before.
A 1959 study aimed to see whether or not catharsis was a good anger management technique. Half of the participants were given a hammer after being insulted and were told to pound a nail for 10 minutes. The other half went and exercised after being insulted in the same way.
The hammer-wielders left the exercise even angrier than they began it because their anger was allowed to fester and grow. Those who focused their energy on a productive activity felt better after 10 minutes. This suggests that catharsis as anger treatment has the opposite effect that some people believe it should.
The findings of this study can be applied to rage rooms for obvious reasons: those who are allowed to smash things simply let their aggression fester. More importantly, they may learn to behave aggressively when angry, which is an extremely harmful habit and a difficult one to break.
If you have mental health issues that are the underlying cause for your irritation and aggressive desires, experts believe that a rage room is not for you. These rooms should be reserved solely for mostly happy people looking to have a good time.
Alternatives to Rage Rooms
Fortunately, there are a lot of alternatives to rage rooms that actually alleviate stress and anger. The first is, of course, professional mental health treatment. Being admitted to a mental health facility is a good choice for those who want additional help, but outpatient programs are the superior choice for some because you can live at home while getting treatment.
You can also perform anger management exercises on your own as an alternative to going to an anger room. Exercise has been proven an effective way to relieve anger in the same study that showed that aggression was not. Spend 15 minutes on a treadmill, lift some weights, or go for a brisk walk to alleviate stress.
You also may enjoy doing breathing exercises to help yourself feel calmer. Not only do deep breaths provide an opportunity for mindfulness, but they also provide more oxygen to your brain. This fosters a sense of peace and reduces anger.
Journaling is also a great way to relieve stress. Write about the things that are making you feel angry and irritated. This will help you to get your feelings out in a productive way that you can review with a therapist later.
Begin Bettering Your Mental Health
Now that you know what a rage room is and why it’s a good way to relieve anger and stress, it’s time to look into additional treatments. After all, a holistic plan for betting your mental health is ultimately what will help you to manage your anger and pain to become the best possible version of yourself.
Contact us with any questions you have about treatment. Our experts are well-versed in many mental health conditions including depression, anxiety, schizophrenia, and personality disorders that may cause anger. We’re committed to helping you live the best possible life, so don’t hesitate to reach out.