Social Anxiety Disorder

Social anxiety disorder, or social phobia, is a chronic psychiatric condition where a person’s daily interactions can cause irrational fear, anxiety, and self-consciousness that can interfere with normal life functioning.

The symptoms can include one or more of the following:

  • Fear of strangers
  • Worry of humiliating or embarrassing yourself
  • Anxiety that is disruptive to school, work, or other daily routines
  • Avoiding people or situations out of fear of embarrassment
  • Difficulty speaking in social situations
  • Difficulty making eye contact

Although everyone does feel some or more of these feelings at one time or another in life, those with social anxiety disorder can find that their fears or anxiety can become so overwhelming that they don’t wish to leave their home. At times, they could find that, while in social interactions or situations, they may sweat, or tremble, their heart may beat fast or they may feel confused, or get nauseated.

There are a variety of causes for social anxiety disorder, including brain chemistry, having learned such behavior from family in youth, or possibly from being abused, bullied, rejected or humiliated in childhood or other phases of life. It is also found that family conflict, sexual abuse or being the victim of other criminal activity can cause social anxiety disorder. The best idea, if you feel you have symptoms of social anxiety disorder, is to speak to your family doctor, or contact your local department of mental health.

Social Phobia

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