Breathe in, breathe out: How to avoid road rage


Posted at Mar 09 2017 07:29 AM

MANILA - Heavy traffic, rowdy drivers, loud noises mixed with the fast-paced lifestyle in crowded urban areas make it difficult for motorists to escape day-to-day stressors.

These stressors, a psychiatrist explained, are all possible triggers of rage that can take over a driver's emotions and cause traffic altercations, or worse, violence.

"When you are in the car, you should be in control of the car, not the other way around," psychiatrist Dr. Bernadette Arcena told ANC.

According to Arcena, road rage incidents are never just about a driver's anger at that particular instance. "A person with that kind of rage has all kinds of problems even prior to that incident," she said.

There are times, Arcena added, social status and to some extent the size of the vehicle of a driver can also contribute to his or her rage or aggressiveness on the road.

"It's kind of a power play," she said. "If you have a bigger vehicle, make sure you have peace and calmness in yourself.

However, Arcena said there are some people who are more prone to road rage because of an intermittent explosive disorder. "They have to undergo treatment," she said.

Although road rage can easily be triggered with a fast-paced lifestyle in the city, Arcena there are simple ways to avoid it. Among these are eating a meal or having enough sleep before driving, and leaving home or the office early or on time to avoid rushing on the road.

Arcena said will also be helpful to keep phone out of sight while driving as gadgets like this can be possible stressors.

She added that it is also important to avoid any arguments as much as possible before going out.

When anger starts to sink in on the road, she said the driver should do breathing exercise and play calm music to distract self.