Hostility appears to be the most important risk factor for heart disease, and it is a stronger predictor than the TAPB as a whole. People who are high in hostility tend to be irritable, impatient, angry, and unable to control their temper. They also often complain about their health, have poor self-esteem, and low tolerance for stress. In addition, they are likely to drink alcohol or use other drugs which can also cause heart problems.
People with this type of personality tend to go through life looking for things to get upset about. When they do find something worthy of anger, they express it aggressively without considering the feelings of others. High hostility individuals are more likely to suffer from heart disease when you account for all other types of personality disorder.
There are two ways in which hostility may contribute to heart disease. First, by being angry and irritable, people who are high in hostility are more likely to develop stress-related illnesses such as hypertension, migraine, and diabetes. All of these conditions can lead to heart disease.
Second, hostility may play a direct role in causing heart disease. Studies have shown that people who are high in hostility have higher levels of cortisol which has been linked to heart disease.
A keen interest in the global kind A behavior that has declined in favor of one specific component of this behavior pattern, aggression-hostility, which appears to be the most damaging aspect in terms of cardiac risk. Studies have shown that individuals who exhibit a great deal of hostility tend to have higher blood pressures, more stress hormones released into their bodies during stressful situations, and may also develop diabetes or high cholesterol levels as they age.
The data used in this article come from two large studies conducted by Dr. Sandra Black et al. at the University of Texas Medical Branch. The first study included information on more than 14,000 men and women who had no history of heart disease when they entered the study. All of them were asked to report how often they engaged in 20 different behaviors over the course of one year. They were also asked to give a blood sample so that their blood pressure, cholesterol levels, and other markers of cardiovascular health could be measured. After three years, information was again collected via questionnaire and phone calls made to all participants to find out whether any had suffered a heart attack or undergone coronary artery bypass surgery. During the study, 549 people died of heart disease-related causes.
The archetypal Type A personality—competitive, irritable, and uptight—is a heart attack waiting to happen. And that heart attack is more likely to occur sooner rather than later. A new study elucidates the nuances of personality and heart disease risk. The study found that people who are prone to stress-induced cardiovascular events have one thing in common: They're all Type A personalities.
Competitive people strive to win at anything they do. If you're competitive you'll want to win at sports, so you play ball or go to the gym to build muscle mass. If someone else is winning, you feel like you should be too, so you try even harder. This constant state of striving for victory is called "striving intensity." People who are prone to stress-induced cardiovascular events have high levels of striving intensity.
Irritable people lose their temper easily. When things don't go your way you can expect an outburst from them. Irrational emotions such as anger and rage can cause stressful situations which can lead to a heart attack. Irrational people will say things they later regret. For example, if you argue with your partner and lose you'll feel bad about yourself and your relationship. Your irritability will come back to haunt you in the form of stressful situations that may lead to a heart attack.
Uptight people worry about what others think of them.
Type B personalities are more laid-back, can cope with irritation more readily, and can roll with the punches in life. Obesity, high blood pressure, heart disease, and stroke appear to be more common among persons with Type A personalities, according to research.
Persons with Type B personalities don't seem to face as many risks associated with these conditions. It's possible that they're more likely to seek out health care when needed.
Researchers believe this to be the case because individuals with Type B personalities tend to be more relaxed about dangerous situations in their lives. For example, if a person with a Type B personality gets into an accident then they're more likely to call someone else rather than trying to fix the problem themselves. This other person might even come and help them clean up the car!
Individuals with Type A personalities on the other hand, would probably try to deal with these problems themselves. If they get into an accident then there's a good chance they wouldn't call anyone else but would try to fix the problem themselves. This could lead to more serious injuries or death.
It's also possible that people with Type B personalities are less likely to develop negative feelings such as anger, hatred, and anxiety toward others.