Mental Health   ›   Emotions  ›   Disgust

Disgust is an emotion that can create strong internal reactions. It’s related to anger and can be directed towards different things, people, or situations. Find out what disgust does, how it feels in your body, and what to do when you feel it.

Disgust is a kind of anger. It’s a reaction of physical or moral rejection of someone or something.


Most of the time, disgust follows a judgment you make about something or someone. It’s a subjective emotion that belongs to you: something that disgusts you won’t necessarily disgust someone else. It could be a food you hate, an insect you think is gross, a smell that makes you feel sick, someone who keeps on sniffing in class, etc.


How disgust feels 

When we’re disgusted, we tend to make a disgusted face (grimace) or close our eyes so we don’t have to see the disgusting object. We may even feel like throwing up, since some things happen in the body – the stomach and the throat.


Why disgust is useful

Disgust may hide a reality we refuse to acknowledge. It may play a role in safeguarding your body (originally, by keeping you from eating rotten food ). It protects you from your fears and responds to a need to flee from those fears. As well, it allows you to focus on what’s important to you. So it’s a way of getting to know yourself better and judging what’s good for you or bad for you.


What to do when you feel disgusted 

Use the times when you feel disgusted to identify what triggered that feeling. By finding the source, you’ll get to know yourself better. Is your disgust justified? How can you better manage situations where it may appear?