Are you afraid of being judged by others? Do you feel conscious in social situations? Are you often uneasy among new people? Well, it means you are troubled by social anxiety disorder, which makes it hard to talk to people around you.
Also known as social phobia, social anxiety disorder is an overwhelming fear of social situations. A person struggling with social phobia experiences an intense fear of being watched and judged by others. When this type of fear becomes constant in life, it can affect day-to-day activities and make it hard for the person to make and keep friends. More often than not, the problem starts during teenage and may continue to become distressing with age, though some people recover from social anxiety as they get older.
Signs of Social Anxiety
A person with social anxiety disorder experiences the following types of symptoms;
· Make little eye contact
· Sweat or tremble among others
· Feel a pulsating heart
· Feeling stomach cramps
· Find it scary to be with others
· Have a hard time talking to strangers
· Be very self-conscious before others
· Be very afraid of how others will judge them
· Avoid crowds
Social anxiety is not shyness. It can affect one’s ability to develop relationships, go to work or attend school. A person suffering from social phobia worries intensely about social situations or feels anxious days before an event. They try to avoid social situations and are worried about what others think of them. Some people exhibiting social anxiety signs may be dependent on alcohol to face crowds.
It is normal to feel anxious sometimes. The fear of being judged is a hindrance for such people to avoid all social situations. They may try to avoid shopping, attending an interview, asking a question, talking over the phone, and eating in public.
Causes of Social Anxiety
What causes social phobia is still unknown. Environmental factors, circumstances, and genetics might play a role in making one vulnerable to social anxiety. Life’s negative experiences, such as sexual abuse, family conflict, or bullying, may contribute to social phobia. As a child, if you were not exposed to social situations and allowed to develop social skills, you could be at a high risk of SAD.
Research finds that certain physical abnormalities or hormonal disturbances might contribute to the condition. For example, any disturbance in serotonin levels might bring about significant changes in your mood. Social anxiety might also become a phenomenon for those with an overactive amygdala that controls fear response and anxiety symptoms. Research finds that people with social anxiety may have some of the neurotransmitter imbalances.
Social phobia could be a hereditary problem since it has been found to run in families. Children might develop social anxiety symptoms if they are raised in an over-protective environment. Someone with a first degree relative with social anxiety disorder may have specific genes that made them prone to SAD.
Social Anxiety Disorder Treatment
Talk to your doctor about the problem. They may refer you to a psychologist, psychotherapist, or counselor for proper diagnosis of the disorder. The best way to treat social anxiety disorder is the talk therapy or psychotherapy and behavioral therapy.