Your Body on Road Rage

Hide Video Transcript

Video Transcript

Traffic is stressful for pretty much everyone. And when your brain is stressed or perceives a threat like someone tailgating you, it signals your body to release adrenaline and cortisol, the stress hormones.


These hormones put you into fight or flight mode, and your whole body responds. Cortisol blocks activity in the part of your brain that shows good judgment, and bad judgment can lead to road rage. When you have road rage, blood flows away from your gut to your muscles preparing you to fight or flee. This gives you tense muscles. That's why regular bouts of anger can lead to tension headaches.

You breathe faster, which is your body's way of getting more oxygen to your arms and legs. Your heart rate and blood pressure go up, which is dangerous if you have heart disease. Your body temperature also goes up, and your skin starts to sweat.

Got road rage? Get it under control. People who road rage are at higher risk of accidents and violence, and they can make existing health problems worse.