Understanding Social Anxiety
nervous from time to time but for some people nerves are a
massive problem when they get severe social anxiety
symptoms. Social anxiety is all too common. So much so in
fact that it is the third largest mental health care
problem in the world.
Sufferers from this disorder essentially have a fear of
social situations that require meeting other people. They often
fear being judged and even criticized by other people. As a
result the unfair perception of people with social anxiety is
that they are shy, withdrawn, disinterested or worse still
If you recognise these things as a social anxiety sufferer,
you will know how restrictive this disorder is. There are
plenty of things you want to do, but feel you cannot do them.
So how bad are social anxiety symptoms and what can be done to
overcome them, if anything?
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Well let’s look at a list of some scenarios where people feel
anxious and it holds them back:
· Meeting new people - especially anyone in authority.
· Teasing and criticism
· Being the center of attention
· People watching you while you are doing something
· Public speaking
In addition to these sufferers may also avoid making eye
contact with people, get embarrassed easily. They may also feel
self conscious about making phone calls, talking, swallowing or
writing in front of other people. This is how restrictive
social anxiety can be.
What is so frustrating for people with social anxiety is
that they know their fear is usually irrational. However, they
feel completely powerless to do anything about it. Avoiding
these stressful situations seems to be the only answer. I’m
sure you can appreciate how debilitating this must feel.
However, there are times when these things cannot be
avoided. Even so, in thinking about what might happen (and
probably won’t happen), sufferers can feel very scared.
Emotional social anxiety symptoms include anxiety, nervousness,
and big fear, racing heart, excessive sweating, trembling,
twitching muscles, blushing, dry throat and ongoing negative
These symptoms can be overcome and there are medical and
therapeutic ways of dealing with the issue. However, to start
with there are a few techniques you can try at home to deal
with your anxiety. For example relaxation techniques can help
to bring the mind and body in to state of relaxation. These
include breathing or counting exercises that will relax you and
ease your anxiety.
If that fails to deal with your anxiety problems, another
option is cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT). This will help
overcome worry and stress by receiving coaching on how to
retrain the mind and remove negative thoughts and paranoia.
This can be done by visiting a therapist, who will talk to you
and find out about your social anxiety symptoms.
The therapist will help you understand how certain problems
can affect how you feel emotionally and physically. As a result
of these sessions you will hopefully be able to change your
thoughts and behaviour and deal with situations that were
previously too stressful.
If all else fails, a visit to your physician may be
necessary. He or she can prescribe medication to help control
the symptoms such as antidepressants, beta blockers or
benzodiazepines. However, prescribed drugs may have some side
effects, which is why therapy or relaxation techniques should
be your first port of call to rid yourself of these infuriating
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Social Anxiety today!