What Is Irritability?

What does irritability mean?

What Is Irritability?

  1. irritability, crossness, fretfulness, fussiness, peevishness, petulance, cholernoun

    an irritable petulant feeling

  2. excitability, irritabilitynoun

    excessive sensitivity of an organ or body part

  3. temper, biliousness, irritability, peevishness, pettishness, snappishness, surlinessnoun

    a disposition to exhibit uncontrolled anger

    «his temper was well known to all his employees»

Wiktionary(4.50 / 2 votes)

  1. irritabilitynoun

    The state or quality of being irritable; quick excitability; petulance; fretfulness; as, irritability of temper.

    Etymology: From irritabilitas.

  2. irritabilitynoun

    A natural susceptibility, characteristic of all living organisms, tissues, and cells, to the influence of certain stimuli, response being manifested in a variety of ways.

    Etymology: From irritabilitas.

  3. irritabilitynoun

    A condition of morbid excitability of an organ or part of the body; undue susceptibility to the influence of stimuli.

    Etymology: From irritabilitas.

Webster Dictionary(1.00 / 1 vote)

  1. Irritabilitynoun

    the state or quality of being irritable; quick excitability; petulance; fretfulness; as, irritability of temper

    Etymology: [L. irritabilitas: cf. F. irritabilit.]

  2. Irritabilitynoun

    a natural susceptibility, characteristic of all living organisms, tissues, and cells, to the influence of certain stimuli, response being manifested in a variety of ways, — as that quality in plants by which they exhibit motion under suitable stimulation; esp., the property which living muscle processes, of responding either to a direct stimulus of its substance, or to the stimulating influence of its nerve fibers, the response being indicated by a change of form, or contraction; contractility

    Etymology: [L. irritabilitas: cf. F. irritabilit.]

  3. Irritabilitynoun

    a condition of morbid excitability of an organ or part of the body; undue susceptibility to the influence of stimuli. See Irritation, n., 3

    Etymology: [L. irritabilitas: cf. F. irritabilit.]

Freebase(0.00 / 0 votes)

  1. Irritability

    Irritability is an excessive response to stimuli.

    The term is used for both the physiological reaction to stimuli and for the pathological, abnormal or excessive sensitivity to stimuli; It is usually used to refer to anger or frustration.

    Irritability may be demonstrated in behavioral responses to both physiological and behavioral stimuli including environmental, situational, sociological, and emotional stimuli.

Editors Contribution(0.00 / 0 votes)

  1. Irritability

    It is simply defined as excessive anger.

    Emeasoba George

    Submitted by emeasoba_g on February 23, 2018  


  1. Chaldean Numerology

    The numerical value of irritability in Chaldean Numerology is: 5

  2. Pythagorean Numerology

    The numerical value of irritability in Pythagorean Numerology is: 8

Examples of irritability in a Sentence


    As a human it is normal for you to get annoyed sometimes. Yes! but you should not be irritable (don't be easily annoyed or angered). For instance, if someone says are you stupid? to your own self or to someone else around you. You don't have to be annoyed.

    Because, that is just a question and which you are expected to respond Yes or No or better still keep quiet alternatively. But most times, when such statement is made, many people often misconcept or mistake it to be an insult. Anyway, take note of that.

    And mind you, irritability is uncalled for and often catastrophic. In fact, excessive anger or irritability can cost you your own life. Thus, desist from it (irritability). I mean, don't be tetchy.

    That is to say, don't be easily annoyed or irritated, come what may (no matter what happens). ~Emeasoba George

  2. Seena Fazel:

    Is it about not being able to think through things, not being able to make judgements about risk? Is it irritability? Impulsiveness? if we can get more of a handle on that, it could really help treat these people.

  3. The Malaysian report:

    The captain's ability to handle stress at work and home was good. There was no known history of apathy, anxiety, or irritability, there were no significant changes in his lifestyle, interpersonal conflict or family stresses.

  4. Chief Bobby Long:

    Peoplethat need a little extra attention or are maybe showing signs of irritability,stress, depression, whatever it could be; he will really focus in on thatperson and then he wants my attention, some of the science behindthat shows that dogs can pick up on pheromones that people emit when they arehighly stressed and some science points to body language, cues that peopleleave.

  5. Timothy Wilens:

    While medications can be very helpful for ADHD symptoms, they may also be associated with some behavioral adverse effects such as irritability, other children may react to this irritability. . . by bullying the child.

Images & Illustrations of irritability


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    Источник: https://www.definitions.net/definition/irritability


    What Is Irritability?

    Irritability, an agitation that may result from provocation, illness, or seemingly no reason at all, may be simply an expression of normal annoyance, but it may also indicate a mental health or medical condition.

    When experiencing consistent irritability that causes stress and interferes with the ability to sleep, work, eat, or maintain good relationships with others, or irritation that may be inappropriate for or proportion to a particular situation, it may be helpful to speak to a therapist.

    Causes of Chronic Irritability

    In itself, irritability is not a mental health condition. Most people feel irritable from time to time, and some people may become frustrated more easily than others as a result of irritability.

    Even if there appears to be no source behind the irritability, there generally is a cause, such as dissatisfaction with one's life or relationship difficulties.

    Irritability can also be a symptom of withdrawal from drugs or alcohol.

    Irritability is a symptom of many mental health conditions, and chronic irritability may be indicative of an underlying health condition, poor coping skills, or negligent self-care. Common causes of chronic irritability include:

    • Find a Therapist

      Physical conditions such as flu, menopause, polycystic ovary syndrome, hyperthyroidism, toothaches, and ear infection.

    • Mental health conditions such as stress, anxiety, depression, bipolar (both during the manic cycle or a depressive episode), schizophrenia, and autism. Irritability occurs as a symptom of depression most often in teenagers and adolescents. In children, an irritable mood may be linked to oppositional and defiant behavior.
    • Inadequate self-care, such as not sleeping enough, not eating well, or not taking time to enjoy hobbies and spend time with loved ones.
    • Chronic stress or poor stress-management skills.
    • Attention deficit hyperactivity, which can make mundane tasks frustrating.

    Effects of Irritability

    Irritability often leads to a short temper and may cause excessive frustration with others. Excessive irritability may cause a more extreme reaction to outside stressors than would normally be experienced. Irritability might also be directed at unrelated individuals, especially in times of depression, anxiety, or stress or when the feeling seems to have no direct cause.

    Many people may prefer to avoid an irritable person, and frequent irritability can interfere with friendships and romantic relationships and may also lead to trouble in the workplace. Children might become fearful around irritable parents, and irritability may also affect relationships between other family members.

    Coping with chronic irritability might also cause significant stress, especially when the irritability is internalized and not directed outward at others.

    Overcoming Irritability

    Self-awareness can be an important tactic to combat irritability. Some people become irritable after hours or days of stress and anxiety.

    But maintaining awareness of emotions can help stop irritability before it becomes overwhelming or unavoidable. Contemplating feelings, talking about them, and gaining control over them can help reduce the frequency of irritability.

    Recognizing physical warning signs of irritability—muscle tension, shallow breathing, and increased sweating—may be beneficial.

    When feeling irritable, it may be helpful to avoid or walk away from provocative situations rather than attempt to respond. This may prevent outbursts or comments that might be regretted at a later time.

    Time may be a necessary factor in overcoming irritability. While attempting to calm emotions, it may be helpful to exercise or otherwise move the body, avoid interactions that might lead to further irritation, and try to find a mood-lifting activity or something to laugh at. Studies show that laughter is generally an effective way to reduce stress and tension.

    Therapy for Irritability

    Therapy for irritability focuses on discovering the underlying cause, which may be an outside factor or a mental health condition, addressing the issue, and establishing coping skills. Any number of types of therapy are ly to be effective in treating irritability and its underlying causes.

    Cognitive behavioral techniques, for example, which can help reframe thoughts to improve behavior, appear to be popular among people affected by irritability.

    In addition, learning effective stress management skills and techniques such as meditation and mindfulness as well as exploring helpful outlets for stress, anxiety, and frustration might all be aspects of therapy to treat irritability.

    Sometimes irritability can be the result of deep feelings of grief or anger: These feelings may be unconsciously felt, and therapy can help uncover and treat the effects of these emotions, thus reducing or relieving irritability.

    In the case of an underlying mental health condition such as bipolar or depression, medication along with therapy might also help to relieve irritability as well as other symptoms.

    Case Examples

    • Irritability in work and relationships: Rhona, 49, enters therapy because she is often irritable at work, and her relationships with her coworkers are suffering. In therapy, she attributes her moodiness to menopause. The therapist validates this possibility but also explores Rhona’s level of satisfaction in her job and life in general. Rhona admits she is lonely and sometimes depressed, and as she begins to get in touch with some feelings of grief and sadness, her irritability diminishes. She decides in therapy to attempt to make friends outside her workplace and enrolls in a cooking class and joins a book club in order to do so. Rhona still experiences depression and continues in therapy for a few months in order to work through it, but her irritability does not return.
    • Husband irritable with wife and children: Paolo, 34, seeks therapy after his wife insists upon it, as he has been very irritable with her and their two young children for no apparent reason. Paolo cannot identify any particular triggers for his irritability; he admits he is usually short-tempered and easily annoyed with his family, but that he does not know why. He even reports feeling irritable with the therapist’s questions. A complete history reveals that Paolo has experienced mood swings from time to time, and a psychiatric evaluation indicates that Paolo suffers from bipolar and appears to be entering a manic phase. A low dosage of mood stabilizer remedies the situation in the short term, and over the next several months, Paolo and his wife attend therapy sessions together to learn about bipolar and develop new coping skills to manage Paolo's moods as they arise.


    1. Kahn, A. (n.d.). Irritability: Causes, Symptoms & Diagnosis. Retrieved from http://www.healthline.com/symptom/irritable-mood.
    2. Kennard, J. (2010, April 25). Coping With Irritability and Anger. Retrieved from http://www.healthcentral.com/bipolar/c/7712/110122/irritability-anger.
    3. Kuriansky, J. (2013, November 22). Irritable, Annoyed, On Edge? How to Ease Up Before You Blow Up. Retrieved from http://bottomlinepersonal.com/irritable-annoyed-on-edge-how-to-ease-up-before-you-blow-up.
    4. O'Connor, R. (1997). Undoing depression: What therapy doesn't teach you and medication can't give you. Boston, MA: Little, Brown.
    5. Stress management: Improve your sense of humor. (2013, July 23). Retrieved from http://www.mayoclinic.org/healthy-lifestyle/stress-management/in-depth/stress-relief/art-20044456?pg=2.

    Last Update:09-09-2019

    Источник: https://www.goodtherapy.org/learn-about-therapy/issues/irritability

    8 Irritability Causes & How to Stop Being Irritable | Buoy

    What Is Irritability?

    Menopause is the name for the natural process by which the menstrual cycle (period) stops happening in a woman. Usually, the process is gradual (takes months or years) and occurs from the age of 45 to 55 years. Menopause is officially diagnosed once a woman stops having a period for 12 months continuously.

    A woman with menopause will notice a decrease in the number and regularity of her periods until they completely stop. In addition, she may notice a number of symptoms that occur as a result of decreased estrogen levels, such as hot flashes, changes in mood, sleep problems, vaginal dryness, changes in libido, and changes in sexual function.

    Certain medications exist that can decrease these symptoms.

    Rarity: Common

    Top Symptoms: fatigue, delay in or irregular periods, vaginal discharge, anxiety, trouble sleeping

    Symptoms that always occur with symptoms of menopause: delay in or irregular periods

    Urgency: Self-treatment

    Premenstrual syndrome

    Premenstrual syndrome (PMS) is a condition that can produce emotional and physical symptoms in women in the days leading up to their menstrual cycle. Common symptoms include bloating, cramping, headaches, irritability, fatigue, and sleep and appetite changes. These symptoms…


    Depression is a mental disorder in which a person feels constantly sad, hopeless, discouraged, and loses interest in activities and life on more days than not. These symptoms interfere with daily life, work, and friendships.

    Rarity: Common

    Top Symptoms: fatigue, depressed mood, headache, anxiety, irritability

    Symptoms that always occur with depression: depressed mood

    Urgency: Primary care doctor

    Mild chronic depression (dysthymia)

    Mild chronic depression is also called dysthymia, dysthymic disorder, or persistent depressive disorder. It is a long-term, low-grade depression that may last for years and periodically swings from mild to severe, but never really lifts.

    The cause of is not certain. Heredity and brain chemistry may make it more difficult to cope with stressful life events. Dysthymia often begins early in life and may appear in childhood, especially among those with other mental health disorders.

    Symptoms include feeling hopeless and inadequate; loss of interest in normal activities; trouble sleeping; irritability; and difficulty relating to others.

    Long-term depression can seriously affect anyone's quality of life. If there is talk of suicide, it should be considered a medical emergency. Take the patient to the emergency room or call 9-1-1.

    Diagnosis is made through physical examination and blood testing to rule out any physical cause, and through psychological evaluation.

    Treatment involves antidepressant medication and «talk therapy,» as well as help with life management and coping skills.

    Rarity: Uncommon

    Top Symptoms: fatigue, depressed mood, irritability, difficulty concentrating, impaired social or occupational functioning

    Symptoms that always occur with mild chronic depression (dysthymia): depressed mood

    Symptoms that never occur with mild chronic depression (dysthymia): severe sadness

    Urgency: Primary care doctor

    Premenstrual dysphoric disorder

    Premenstrual dysphoric disorder (PMDD) describes a set of severe, debilitating symptoms that appear seven to ten days before a woman's menstrual period begins.

    It may be caused by an abnormal reaction to the natural female hormone changes, creating a deficiency in the mood-regulating brain chemical serotonin.

    Risk factors include a personal or family history of PMDD, postpartum depression, and/or general depression, as well as cigarette smoking.

    Physical symptoms include headaches, abdominal pain and bloating, back pain, and breast tenderness. Psychological symptoms include severe depression, anxiety, and irritability.

    Because symptoms tend to get worse over time, medical help should be sought so that quality of life can be improved.

    If symptoms persist for a year or more, a diagnosis of PMDD may be made.

    Treatment includes improving the diet, adding vitamin and mineral supplements, and getting regular exercise.

    Birth control pills to regulate the menstrual cycle may be prescribed, along with anti-inflammatory medicines such as ibuprofen. Antidepressants in the selective serotonin reuptake inhibitor class (SSRI) are helpful in some cases.

    Rarity: Common

    Top Symptoms: fatigue, stomach bloating, anxiety, depressed mood, abdominal cramps (stomach cramps)

    Symptoms that always occur with premenstrual dysphoric disorder:impaired social or occupational functioning, symptoms of depression, anxiety and emotional lability

    Symptoms that never occur with premenstrual dysphoric disorder:constant sadness, disapearance of periods for over a year

    Urgency: Primary care doctor

    Post-concussion syndrome

    Post-concussion syndrome is a set of symptoms that can occur after a head injury. A concussion is a mild traumatic brain injury that involves confusion and memory loss, with or without a loss of consciousness. Post-concussion syndrome typically occurs after concuss…

    Seasonal affective disorder

    Seasonal affective disorder is mood disorder marked by seasonal onset. While summertime sadness is possible, the vast majority of seasonal affective disorder begins in the winter and resolves by summer.

    Rarity: Rare

    Top Symptoms: fatigue, loss of appetite, difficulty concentrating, weight gain, sleep disturbance

    Urgency: Primary care doctor

    Insomnia disorder

    Insomnia disorder is a short-term or chronic condition whereby individuals have difficulty

    sleeping. Other common symptoms include fatigue, difficulty with concentration, social

    dysfunction, reduced motivation, and behavioral changes. The short-term form of

    the condition is usually …

    Obstructive sleep apnea

    Obstructive sleep apnea (OSA) is a relatively common condition, especially in obese adults. It refers to obstruction (blockage) of the airway during sleep. This obstruction is usually caused by the back of the tongue and the muscles of the palate relaxing and falling …

    Источник: https://www.buoyhealth.com/learn/irritability

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