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Social Phobia - Treatment, cause, symptoms, medication of Social Phobia disorder

Social phobia is an intense fear of becoming humiliated in social situations, specifically of embarrassing yourself in front of other people. It often runs in families and may be accompanied by depression or alcoholism. Social phobia often begins around early adolescence or even younger."

This is the fear and avoidance of social situations: crowds, strangers, parties and meetings. Public speaking would be the sufferer's worst nightmare. It is suffered by 2% of the population. Fear of being evaluated negatively in social situations.

If you suffer from social phobia, you tend to think that other people are very competent in public and that you are not. Small mistakes you make may seem to you much more exaggerated than they really are. Blushing itself may seem painfully embarrassing, and you feel as though all eyes are focused on you. You may be afraid of being with people other than those closest to you. Or your fear may be more specific, such as feeling anxious about giving a speech, talking to a boss or other authority figure, or dating. The most common social phobia is a fear of public speaking. Sometimes social phobia involves a general fear of social situations such as parties. More rarely it may involve a fear of using a public restroom, eating out, talking on the phone, or writing in the presence of other people, such as when signing a check.

What are the causes of Social Phobia?

Research to define causes of social phobia is ongoing.

  • Some investigations implicate a small structure in the brain called the amygdala in the symptoms of social phobia. The amygdala is believed to be a central site in the brain that controls fear responses.
  • Animal studies are adding to the evidence that suggests social phobia can be inherited. In fact, researchers supported by the National Institute of Mental Health (NIMH) recently identified the site of a gene in mice that affects learned fearfulness.
  • One line of research is investigating a biochemical basis for the disorder. Scientists are exploring the idea that heightened sensitivity to disapproval may be physiologically or hormonally based.
  • Other researchers are investigating the environment's influence on the development of social phobia. People with social phobia may acquire their fear from observing the behavior and consequences of others, a process called observational learning or social modeling.

Social phobia is far different from the run-of-the-mill nervousness associated with stressful situations. It's the intensity of the fear that distinguishes the condition from the almost inevitable butterflies that most people feel when they are about to give a speech or go to an interview or even a party.

When people with social phobia perceive that others will judge their "performance" in a certain situation, their bodies undergo physical changes, which typically include profuse sweating, rapid heartbeat, shortness of breath, faintness, and blushing.

"In the more severe cases, people can have a panic-like reaction and become so overwhelmed with anxiety that they feel completely disoriented," says Jerilyn Ross, president of the Anxiety Disorders Association of America and a psychotherapist who has treated thousands of patients with social phobia, including Osmond. "Your fight-or-flight alarm system that warns you when there's danger goes off at the wrong time. You literally feel like you're losing control, you're going to do something stupid to embarrass yourself, you're going to die."

To avoid the frightening, panic-like reactions, people often rearrange their lives to sidestep their personal triggers rather than endure the intense anxiety. "What we're talking about is an anxiety so severe that a person is unable to function, either socially, academically or occupationally," explains Thomas Laughren, M.D., the team leader for FDA's psychiatric drug products group. "You hear of people who would turn down a promotion or quit their job rather than dealing with talking to groups of people. Other people are shut-ins because they fear being judged in almost any social interaction outside of their family."

It's not that these people are shy, necessarily. Turner, for example, craved social interaction. "I could list a million things I wanted to do, which my peers were doing, that I couldn't," Turner says. "I didn't date. I rarely went to parties, and when I did, I was very scared the whole time."

Turner's condition is referred to as "generalized" social phobia because her anxiety extended to a broad variety of settings. Some people with generalized social phobia become very anxious about activities as routine as eating in a restaurant, writing something down while someone is watching, or using a public restroom. As a group, those with generalized social phobia are less likely to graduate from high school and are more likely to rely on government financial assistance or have poverty-level salaries, McCann points out.

Other people have the more limited "specific" social phobia, meaning their fear is associated with just public speaking or another well-defined circumstance.

Facts and Tips about Social Phobia

  • Social phobia is a fear or terror of social places and it is related to mental illness or psychological problem.
  • Social phobia may be caused due to some bad experiences occurred at the social places in the past.
  • Some symptoms linked with social phobia are feel alone, fear, uneasiness, sweating, rapid heartbeats, low blood pressure.
  • Thinking must be positive because it will help to reduce your fear and negative thoughts.
  • Anti-depressant medicines will helpful to control depression and stress.
  • Do not drink tea, coffee and avoid smoking.
  • Take rest and help of therapist or psychologist.

Panic Disorder and Agoraphobia


Social Phobia Treatment - How to overcome Social Phobia?

Phobic Disorder

Social Phobia - Basics

Specific Phobia

Sometimes crying or laughing
are the only options left,
and laughing feels better right now.

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