Anger Among UK Ex-Service Military Personnel During the COVID-19 Pandemic

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Military service and ex-service personnel commonly experience difficulties with anger. The COVID-19 pandemic had several negative consequences upon social, economic, and health factors that influence anger. This study aimed to explore 1) levels of anger in an ex-serving military cohort during the COVID-19 pandemic; 2) self-reported changes in anger compared with prepandemic levels; and 3) identify sociodemographic characteristics, military characteristics, COVID-19 experiences, and COVID-19 stressors associated with anger. UK ex-service personnel (n = 1499) completed the Dimensions of Anger Reactions 5-item measure within an existing cohort study. Overall, 14.4% reported significant difficulties with anger, and 24.8% reported their anger worsened during the pandemic. Anger was associated with factors such as financial difficulties, extra/new caring responsibilities, and COVID-19 bereavement. Endorsing more COVID-19 stressors was associated with higher odds of anger difficulties. This study highlights the impact of the pandemic on ex-service personnel, including a strain on family/social relationships and financial hardship, which affected anger.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)940-947
Number of pages8
JournalJournal of Nervous & Mental Disease
Issue number12
Publication statusPublished - 5 Jul 2023


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