Social Anxiety disorder disease is also known as social phobia is an intensely persistent, often chronic fear of interacting with others and being looked upon by other people. It’s an intense, constant, intense fear of being viewed and evaluated by other people. However, social anxiety disorder does not need to stop you from achieving your goals. Treatment can help you get over your symptoms quickly. So, how can I tell if I suffer from Social Anxiety Disorder?
Anxiety about ordinary daily activities for weeks before they occur has a suffocating impact on those who have social phobia, to the point that it involves interaction with their life. These activities have evolved into challenges that cause humiliation and fear. Anything, from using a public bathroom to going to and from work or school, may trigger social phobia symptoms.
Social Anxiety Disorder, like many other mental health conditions, can be determined through a series of tests that assess various aspects of your personality. These tests will ask you questions such as: Have you ever felt nervous while going up to meet new people? Have you ever had embarrassing or painful social anxiety symptoms in situations involving the public eye? Do you find it hard to plan for complex or unpredictable conditions?
There are several different kinds of medications that are used to treat social anxiety disorder. Your doctor will most likely recommend beta-blockers, antidepressants, or other types of prescription medication. These medications are designed to control your serotonin levels and relieve your condition’s symptoms.
The problem with prescription medications for social anxiety disorder is that they often don’t treat your fears’ underlying cause. They only treat your symptoms, and you’re left coping with them over again. This means that when you stop taking the medication, you start to suffer even more signs. Also, since prescription medications are usually habit-forming, you build up a tolerance to them and become dependent on them for your symptoms. This can lead to a mental health crisis if you stop taking the medication.
People who suffer from these phobias can become frightened and avoid any activities that pose a danger. Various circumstances may cause feelings of shame. While some are isolated with only one or two causes, some can include almost any social environment, causing them to withdraw from life. In certain situations, the individual is conscious that they should not be afraid, but the sense of fear suppresses the rationale, and the anxiety once more.
There are no fundamental reasons for social anxiety and depression, and it is unclear why certain patients develop it while others do not. On the other hand, a social phobia may be genetic, and it does run in some families. When trying to pinpoint the exact cause of social anxiety, context knowledge about a person’s environment or psychological stress factors can also be considered.
If you are someone who suffers from social anxiety, then you are probably well aware of the problems it can cause you. However, there is even more to it than just those two issues. Other mental health conditions come with social anxiety, and understanding those conditions can help you learn how to control social anxiety more effectively.
Here Are Some of The Most Common Causes of Social Anxiety:
- Social Phobia – this is also known as “social anxiety”. Social phobia is a psychological condition characterized by an intense fear of being judged or watched by others in particular social situations. Social phobias are often referred to as “compulsive anxiety” because the symptoms can only be relieved by “reliving” past traumatic events. Social anxiety symptoms typically include excessive nervousness, uncontrolled shaking, excessive sweating, difficulty talking, feelings of unreality, and an intense feeling of “in danger.”
- Obsessive-Compulsive Disorder (OCD) – this disorder deals with ritual behaviors and obsessions that can be extremely difficult to deal with. People who have the obsessive-compulsive disorder are unable to control their compulsions. They have repeated behaviors such as checking if the sink is clean, repeatedly picking at their skin, and repeating activities that they find irritating or embarrassing. The person with OCD may become very fearful whenever these rituals are done, but they cannot stop their compulsive behavior without extreme pain and distress. People with OCD need to eliminate the ways to be free of social anxiety gradually. OCD is similar to social stress in that its symptoms can be alleviated through various therapies, including psychotherapy.
- Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) – people living with PTSD can experience anxiety and symptoms after exposure to terrifying events. Common symptoms of PTSD include flashbacks, nightmares, numbness, and anger. Although the symptoms of PTSD can usually be treated, there is no known cure for the disorder. Using therapies including psychotherapy, behavioral therapy, support groups, and other methods, people living with PTSD can learn to manage their anxiety symptoms without medications.
- Alcoholism/ Cocaine Addiction – heavy substance use can often lead to severe depression and mental health issues. However, excessive substance use and prolonged social anxiety can create a cycle that results in addiction. People who suffer from alcohol and cocaine addictions may feel panicked when exposed to certain social situations that would typically bring on a panic attack. Due to their substance use, these people will then develop symptoms that mirror those of social anxiety. These people need to seek treatment for alcoholism and cocaine addiction as well as other mental health disorders.
If you or someone you know suffers from one of these conditions, it may help to identify the cause of the problem. By determining what is causing the social anxiety, the person may then address the source of his/her concern and find a cure for their disorder. In many cases, identifying the cause of a person’s social anxiety can be as simple as helping them recognizes the symptoms they may experience when exposed to certain social situations. Proper diagnosis can help provide the necessary treatment for this disorder and lead to recovery from the disease.
Symptoms of Social Anxiety Disorder
When somebody has a social anxiety disorder and needs care, it is essential to consider the following alert signs and symptoms:
- Fear that someone will judge or note that they have a phobia.
- Despite their ability to converse with others, they are unable to do so due to anxiety.
- Self-consciousness and general shame while in public.
- Avoiding people and places that make you anxious.
- Excessive worry in the days or weeks leading up to a case.
- Reacting to people by shaking, having stomach issues, feeling nauseous, blushing, and sweating.
- Having trouble developing new friendships or sustaining existing ones.
These symptoms may be hard to identify because they can come and go without any noticeable change. These attacks can begin when we are at a very early age and continue as we get older. Social Anxiety Disorder usually includes excessive and unrealistic worry about social situations, making it difficult to function in everyday situations that require independent thinking. People with social anxiety have a constant, intense, and chronic fear of embarrassing themselves in front of other people. This fear often becomes so powerful that it controls individuals’ actions and prevents them from leading daily, fulfilling lives.
Social anxiety disorder manifests itself in several different ways, including severe anxiety, excessive worrying, avoidance of social situations, and depression. Social Anxiety Disorder is a painful mental health condition characterized by an intense fear of being judged or watched by others in public places. The severity of social anxiety disorder symptoms is different for each person, ranging from mild to severe. This intense fear often interferes with everyday activities, causing problems in work, school, and social relationships. In some cases, sufferers can become depressed, leading to an overall increase in depressive symptoms.
Even though the symptoms of Social Anxiety Disorder can be disabling, they should not be ignored. Social Anxiety Disorder can be treated, both with therapy and prescription medications. There are many types of treatments, ranging from medicines to relaxation techniques to cognitive therapy, and the best course of treatment depends on the individual. When a person is overly anxious about social encounters, they usually have unrealistic fears about being around other people, which causes them to avoid all social meetings, including those with close friends and family members.
When symptoms of Social Anxiety Disorder are present, there are various ways to treat the condition. These include multiple medications, such as antidepressants or anticonvulsants, relaxation techniques, dietary changes, or self-help programs. Many people find that social skills training or group therapy is beneficial. Sometimes people need to make changes in their daily lives, such as avoiding stressful situations and learning new habits for low self-esteem. In some cases, medication is also prescribed to help with feelings of anxiety and fear.
Social Anxiety Disorder Stats
Social anxiety usually begins when a person is young, and a doctor may diagnose it after symptoms have been present for at least six months. Treatment is essential for overcoming the phobia because, without it, social anxiety will last for years, if not a lifetime. Social phobias typically begin about the age of 13, and it has been recorded in approximately 6.8 percent, or 15 million, of American adults aged 18 and up.
It tells us that millions of people worldwide have this mental disorder. In America alone, over 5 million Americans suffer from it. There is a startling statistic that about a third of those suffering from severe forms of this disorder. And we know that statistics can be deceiving and that we may not all suffer from this disorder at the same level. Many people may not even know that they suffer from Social Anxiety Disorder; they brush it off as a nervous condition or something that can “go away”. Well, it can go away for a while, but it will always return, more vital than ever, and cause all sorts of havoc in all aspects of your life. Here are some Social Anxiety Disorder Stats to help you realize the devastating effects of this mental disorder on your life.
Social Anxiety Disorder Stats also shows us that those who suffer from this disorder are much more likely to suffer from other serious illnesses such as cardiovascular disease, asthma, or other diseases. They are much more likely to commit suicide because they cannot handle the crippling symptoms of Social Anxiety Disorder and the negative thoughts that go with it. Researchers have found that those who suffer from Social Anxiety Disorder have twice the heart attack rate as someone who does not suffer from this disorder. So you can see, this disorder can ruin your life, and by taking steps today to overcome Social Anxiety Disorder, you can live a happy and healthy life.
To determine the symptoms are not triggered by some form of physical or mental disorder, it is essential to consult with a specialist who can order to fix social phobia. When a social anxiety disorder has been diagnosed, the doctor can refer you to a mental health specialist who will help you with psychotherapy, medication, or both. Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT) is very beneficial in reducing social phobias and teaching patients how to respond, behave, and think in ways that minimize anxiety and fear. The importance of how cognitive psychotherapy operates with actions and inspiring a new approach to public situations cannot be overstated.
Social Anxiety Disorder (SAD) is a common, chronic, and debilitating condition with many causes but no cure. However, there are social anxiety disorder treatment options available for those who suffer from this condition. Some of these treatment options may include medications, counselling, hypnotherapy, support groups, and relaxation techniques. The most effective social anxiety treatment options will depend upon the severity of the condition and the person’s willingness to change. Let’s examine some of the best social anxiety disorder treatment options.
Like with Many Other Disorders, Medication is a Treatment Option for Social Phobia and The Most Prescribed Forms Are:
- Anxiety-relieving medicine. These drugs are safe and quick, but they should not be used for a prolonged period. There are numerous types available.
- Antidepressant medications: Antidepressants, which are typically used for treatment of depression,, are more often used than anti-anxiety drugs. It can take several weeks for them to begin relieving symptoms.
The first type of social anxiety disorder treatment options is medications. Medications, often antidepressants, are used by many people to treat their social anxiety disorder. These medications act in two ways. They reduce anxious feelings, which is commonly known as the “fight or flight” response and normalize chemical levels in the brain. This allows people to feel calmer, less anxious, and ultimately more functional.
However, as necessary as these medications can be for some people, they can also have severe side effects. People on antidepressants may experience thoughts of suicide, feel uncontrollable during times of emotional stress, lose their ability to reason, experience adverse physical and mental side effects such as flushing and nausea, or even develop severe psychological disorders. Also, many antidepressants can cause weight gain, dizziness, insomnia, and depression. Moreover, some antidepressants can also cause significant withdrawal symptoms, including shaking, nausea, restlessness, and muscle pain. For these reasons, doctors usually carefully choose the most likely drugs to produce the desired results and minimize the potential for harmful side effects.
Another form of anxiety disorder treatment options that may be considered is natural supplements and remedies. These can consist of herbs, vitamins, and nutritional supplements like St. John’s Wort or Passionflower. Many natural supplements for anxiety and other mental health issues have been studied by scientists and have shown significant benefits. For example, St. John’s Wort has been found to relieve both depression and anxiety and reduce the symptoms of anxiety and panic attacks.
To live an everyday life free from the fear of being judged, you need to learn how to minimize your concerns. When you start to feel anxious, try counting to ten or start visualizing an object that relaxes you. You also need to challenge your fear by making statements such as “I am not a judge” or “I am in control of my thoughts.” Challenge the negative views that you have been using to convince yourself that you cannot do something. If these methods are not enough to get you out of the habit of living in fear, you will need professional help. Your doctor or therapist can evaluate your situation and provide you with various treatment options, including therapy.
Get Help Today for Social Anxiety Disorder
We recognize that social anxiety disorders are more difficult to manage when associated with an alcohol or abuse problem, and our team members are uniquely trained to handle Dual Diagnosis issues. When working in these unique conditions, it is essential to understand what to search for and how drugs and alcohol, and violence can interact with social anxiety.
Social Anxiety Disorder is a mental disorder and is characterized by excessive fear and anxiety in social situations. A sufferer of this disorder will usually avoid most social situations. Instead of feeling at ease and enjoying the situation they are in, they would instead freeze up and feel that they have nowhere to go. As a result their anxiety only grows worse with time. Although it is a very real disorder, it can be easily treated and with the right help you can get rid of it today.
It is said that around 16 million people suffer from social anxiety disorder in the United States alone. Rehabilitation should begin in a positive environment where treatment services are addressed in a structured manner that discusses each particular area impacted by a social anxiety disorder. If you or anybody you know suffers from social anxiety disorder, phobias, or addiction, please call us for more details.
Ben Lesser is one of the most sought-after experts in health, fitness and medicine. His articles impress with unique research work as well as field-tested skills. He is a freelance medical writer specializing in creating content to improve public awareness of health topics. We are honored to have Ben writing exclusively for Dualdiagnosis.org.