We live in a world and age where it’s quite normal to feel nervous in certain circumstances. For instance, going at the prom, having an important business meeting or landing the interview of your life may give you that feeling of butterflies in your belly. While this is normal sometimes, what is not normal is the appearance of social phobia or social anxiety disorder.
What is a Social Phobia?
Social phobia affects you on a daily basis, wreaking havoc in your life and crippling your interactions with others. Social phobia is a disorder that manifests itself in public, making you feel irritated, agitated and even embarrassed. Doctors claim that this is a mental health condition. The good news is that it can be easily treated by medication, psychological counseling and learning coping skills.
To make it clearer to understand, think of all those times when you have felt judged by others and you have experienced feelings of inadequacy, humiliation, inferiority, embarrassment and depression. Social phobia is experiencing all of those feelings at the same time, and at an irrationally high level.
This is a much more common issue that we were led to believe. Social anxiety disorder is a devastating condition that affects millions of men and women from all around the world on a daily basis. In the United States alone, recent studies have shown that over 7% of the population suffers from a mild to severe form of social phobia.
Types of Social Phobia
There are two main types of social anxiety:
1. Generalized: in this case, the person experiences a constant level of worry, fear, anxiety, self-blame, feelings of inferiority, depression and indecision all during the day, in multiple social scenarios.
2. Specific: a specific social phobia is when a person has a particular fear. For instance, the fear of speaking in public or the fear or getting into a group of people.
Symptoms of Social Phobia
Social anxiety disorder usually comes with a high level of emotional distress. Sufferers normally experience at least one of the following symptoms:
– Fear of situations in which they might be judged
– Fear of other people who might notice their anxiety
– Concern that they will somehow offend someone
– Avoidance of speaking in public or talking privately to people out of fear of saying something wrong
– Constant worry about humiliating or embarrassing themselves