anxiety disorder

Everything You Need to Know About Social Anxiety Disorder

Social Anxiety Disorder is a severe type of anxiety disorder that involves excessive discomfort and fear in social surroundings. A person with this disorder experiences intense anxiety and extreme fear in any social situation. And as a result, they desperately avoid social interactions. Individuals with social anxiety often experience symptoms like panic, Restlessness, rapid heartbeats, and increased pulse rate, hampering their well-being and leading to abnormal behaviors.

Sometimes, this social fear becomes so intense that even hearing about a social situation makes a person extremely nervous. Whenever they hear about going outside, they experience over-sweating, higher heartbeats, and a weird discomfort. However, social anxiety is treatable with a few practical therapy sessions, some healthy lifestyle changes, and some psychotropic medicines if needed. Here, we will discuss everything you must know about this mental illness. We hope this fruitful discussion will spread the required awareness about social anxiety disorder.

What Are Some Common Symptoms of Social Anxiety Disorder?

Specific symptoms may indicate you are suffering from social anxiety. According to the DSM (Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders), Intense fear is one of the most common and noticeable symptoms of Social Anxiety. However, there are a few more symptoms of social anxiety that might help with the correct diagnosis.

Excessive Fear

As mentioned, excessive fear is one of the most identifiable symptoms of Social Anxiety. Individuals with social anxiety always fear that they will be judged, humiliated, and embarrassed in every upcoming social event. And as a response to their fear, they often produce withdrawal tendencies. Even the thought of going outside their comfort zone makes them shiver. Such intense fear becomes more robust with time if it remains untreated.

Over-sweating and Restlessness

People with Social Anxiety Disorder often react strangely in social situations. They often sweat excessively whenever they come across new people. They experience weird discomfort and intense Restlessness whenever they are in a new social situation. Such a strange sensation makes their bodies sweat more, and their hearts beat fast.

Constant avoidance

Social anxiety patients tend to withdraw themselves from every social setting. Sometimes, they act desperately to avoid a social event, acting against their parents, siblings, and friends for not going out. Such a situation often becomes permanent, leading to complete and constant isolation.

Paranoid Thoughts

Individuals with Social anxiety often develop a feeling that everyone is trying to embarrass them by inviting them to a social event. They often possess this unrealistic belief that everyone is laughing at them, judging them, and gossiping about them. Hence, they start panicking in every social situation, desperately trying to avoid social interaction.

Lack of Concentration

Lack of concentration is another common sign of social anxiety. Individuals who have this mental illness often find it difficult to concentrate, gradually impacting their everyday activities. The social fear becomes so stubborn that it keeps coming back, distracts one’s mind, and affects concentration power.

What Are Some Root Causes of Social Anxiety Disorder?

Research evidence has identified some root causes of Social Anxiety Disorder. However, the causes of social anxiety may vary from person to person. Let’s learn about some possible causes that are more likely to cause this mental disorder.

Biological or genetic factors

According to the psychiatric research associations, a person’s genetics often trigger mental health issues like social anxiety. Also, chemical imbalance is another potential risk factor, causing social anxiety even at a very early age. Hence, we can say biological factors have a significant contribution in triggering social anxiety.

Social and Environmental Factors

An embarrassing social experience often triggers panic and fearful memories, making people avoid every social setup. Also, we often experience tremendous pressure from the existing society and our family to meet the social standards. Society usually expects us to behave in a certain way in a social setup—the inability to meet those specific social standards and expectations often causes fear, anxiety, and overthinking. As a result, people start desperately avoiding every kind of social interaction. They even get violent when forced to go outside and engage in social interactions.

What Are Some Practical Treatment Approaches for Social Anxiety Disorder?

Fortunately, today’s generation has some effective treatment options for anxiety disorder. However, one needs to remain consistent in this treatment journey to cope with social anxiety issues. Here, we are listing some effective treatment methods that do wonders for individuals with social anxiety.

Cognitive Behavioral Therapy

Cognitive Behavioral therapy, also known as CBT, works incredibly in reducing the symptoms of Social Anxiety Disorder. Initially, CBT helps a patient identify their illogical thoughts and beliefs. Then, it aims to gradually manipulate those irrational thoughts and turn them into positive thoughts and beliefs. However, CBT usually takes 7-8 sessions to show desirable results. Hence, one should attend all these sessions mindfully.

Exposure Therapy

Exposure therapy works well if performed under a professional’s supervision. This therapy exposes patients to fearful social situations and encourages them to face them confidently. The therapist combines the alarming social situation with something relaxing or rewarding. At the same time, it teaches an individual how to stay calm and composed in an unwanted social situation.

Group Therapy

Many individuals suffer from social anxiety but hate to admit it in front of their friends and family. For those shy and introverted individuals, it’s best to participate in group therapy sessions. Such sessions will make them feel they are not alone. Many people are facing the same battle every day. Also, such group therapy sessions encourage people to interact with each other and exchange their coping strategies, eventually improving their social interaction skills and reducing their fear.


If the above therapies fail to offer the desirable result, one may need to take some prescribed psychotropic medications. However, the medicines should be consumed only if a professional psychiatrist prescribes them. Also, combining these medications with your therapy sessions speeds up the recovery process.

Final Thoughts

Social anxiety is a common mental illness that impacts more than 10 million people every year. However, it’s curable if diagnosed on time and treated correctly. Also, asking for help from a mental health professional is a crucial step here, gradually improving one’s condition. Just remember that you are not alone in this journey. Your loved ones and your therapist are here to offer you anxiety-free, better days.