Anger rumination and ASD tend to correlate frequently. In fact, children with autism have a higher chance of anger rumination than their peers without ASD. For parents who have children with anger issues, the sudden outbursts can feel unpredictable and alarming. Getting help for your child and yourself can make dealing with anger rumination easier for you both. Contact Discover Camp Worth today at 855.915.2545 to learn more about how we can help.
What Is Anger Rumination?
Anger rumination occurs when someone repeats anger or frustrating experiences in their mind. Constantly reliving failure, regrets, mistakes, or upset can lead to internalizing difficult thoughts and emotions. Many people experience severe emotional disturbances, such as depression or anxiety. However, others may develop aggression or irritability, especially in those with maladaptive behaviors.
Anger rumination is a type of self-regulatory issue commonly associated with ASD. When it becomes severe, a person may have difficulty focusing on methods of dealing with it healthily.
Signs Your Child Struggles with Anger Rumination, and What You Can Do to Help While Finding Help
If you suspect your autistic child is struggling with anger rumination, some signs are:
- Being unable to determine or assess the truth
- Inability to reassess people, places, or situations to gain new perspective, clarity, or see these things in a new light; inability to change their mind about someone or something even when you can see they’re wrong
- Difficulty solving problems
- New or worsening social anxiety and withdrawal
- Behavioral issues such as outbursts or aggression
- Aggression that seems to come out of nowhere
- Ongoing emotional distress due to these unhealthy thought patterns
It can be overwhelming to see what your child is going through, without knowing how to help them. Not being able to break them out of a troubling thought pattern, or manage aggressive outbursts that are maybe becoming more frequent can be scary.
Autism wires the brain differently, so to speak, so tried and true methods of dealing with behavioral issues in children without autism may not help you or your child in these instances–it’s okay to seek help from professionals like those at Camp Worth. Some things you can try to minimize the effects of anger rumination for your autistic child while making your plan to get them into behavioral therapy include:
- Physical activity and exercise is a great way to reduce stress and other negative feelings
- Going for walks or spending time in nature are proven to be calming for people with and without ASD
- Try some meditation, distraction, and anxiety-soothing techniques
- Try to understand the root cause of the issue–person, place, or thing–and reduce risk of being triggered by way of avoiding exposure to these triggers
It’s simply not healthy to obsess over and dwell on negaitve emotions; we know this, and we regulate ourselves into feeling better when we notice we are slipping into negative thought patterns. Individuals with autism are often not able to properly regulate their negative emotions, and may need a little extra help so this rumination does not start effecting more areas of their life.
How Anger Rumination and ASD Affect Children
Children who have autism and anger rumination may contribute to anger, irritability, or aggression. Living with autism is already tricky enough, and the condition can make expressing feelings difficult. Additionally, traditional talk therapy and other means used for adolescents and adults as part of anger treatment might not work as well in people with autism due to their communication problems.
Secondly, those with ASD often have repetitive thinking. When combined with angry thoughts, repetitive thinking can become anger rumination. The frustration experienced by reliving upsetting times and not appropriately expressing emotions in a way others can understand can lead to outbursts or irritability.
Anger from experiences in the child’s distant past can feel fresh to a child due to anger rumination and ASD. Because the emotion feels so fresh, letting go of the feelings elicited by the memory becomes difficult. Therefore, children with ASD who also struggle with rumination need specialized care to ensure they learn more appropriate behaviors to deal with their feelings.
How Autism Treatment Addresses Anger Issues
Anger treatment is a critical part of helping your child with autism. One treatment method that may help your child is counseling and behavior analysis, a common form of autism treatment that works for many ages of those with ASD. However, most notably for children with anger rumination and ASD, behavioral analysis can help them to learn:
- Ways to avoid negative responses or behaviors
- How to identify and appropriately communicate emotions, including anger
- How to interact socially
- Method for improving motor skills
When your child learns to identify negative responses and maladaptive behaviors, they also learn positive alternatives. Additionally, by learning ways to communicate their emotions, they can express the anger they ruminate over. By talking about their feelings and releasing them, they can avoid the frustration resulting from an inability to describe their feelings.
When your child receives anger treatment, you can also get an autism parent training program to help you with the daily living challenges that you may face with your child. You can learn ways to deal with disruptive behaviors that occur as a natural offshoot of autism or from your child’s anger rumination. Plus, we teach you skills to communicate and play with your child. Lastly, we help you learn healthy coping methods for you and your child when you feel frustrated at your child’s condition or actions.
Get Help in Texas at Camp Worth for Your Child’s Anger Rumination and ASD
If your child has anger rumination and ASD, you can get support for them and yourself. With help, you don’t need to feel alone in educating and caring for your child. Camp Worth in Texas has a qualified autism treatment staff to help with the emotional and physical issues of autism. Call us at 855.915.2545 to learn about our autism treatment programs. We have options for children 11 through 17 with a formal diagnosis of autism and their parents. You’re not alone in raising your child. We can support you and your teen.