For a formal-sounding verb that means to make worse, try exacerbate. If you're in trouble, complaining about it will only exacerbate the problem.
Exacerbate is related to the adjective acrid, often used to describe sharp-smelling smoke. Think of exacerbate then as a sharp or bitter thing that makes something worse. A drought will exacerbate a country's food shortage. Worsen, intensify, aggravate and compound are similar, but exacerbate has the sense of an irritant being added in to make something bad even worse.