Social Anxiety: How You Can Get Help



social anxiety


If you're terrified of being judged by other people, very self-conscious, or avoid meeting new people, and it has been ongoing for at least six months, you probably have a social anxiety disorder. This condition is also called social phobia, which is a serious mental health condition.


A person with social anxiety may display and express an intense fear of being judged or watched by others. This condition may affect school, career, and daily activities. A patient finds it hard to make friends, meet other people, and attend social events.


If you think that you have a social anxiety disorder, below are some helpful ways to get help:


Talk to a Mental Health Professional


The person who can help you if you believe you have a social anxiety disorder is a mental health professional, like a psychiatrist. A trusted, reputable, and experienced mental health professional, like one from Well Beings Counselling, can help you confirm a diagnosis if you or your loved one has a social anxiety disorder.


Whether you're anxious meeting new people, answering questions in class, being on an interview, partying with friends, or talking to strangers, a psychiatrist can help find solutions to reduce your level of anxiety, like meditation therapy.


Ask Help From Your Family to Increase Medication and Treatment Compliance


When it comes to medication for social anxiety, the different types of medications include antidepressants, anti-anxiety medications, and beta-blockers. By complying with your prescribed medications, you'll feel more relaxed and less anxious. Family support should be prioritized to ensure that a loved one will comply with medication and treatments for social anxiety disorder.


Anti-anxiety medications help reduce anxious feelings. Doctors only prescribe anti-anxiety medications for relatively short periods to avoid drug dependence. On the other hand, antidepressants are used in treating depression, which is also helpful for social anxiety disorder. Antidepressants may take several weeks to take effect. 


Beta-blockers help block physical symptoms of anxiety, such as sweating, tremors, and increased heart rate. This is the best choice of medication for performance anxiety


A lot of patients with social anxiety disorder get the best results by combining medication, cognitive behavioral therapy, and other psychotherapies.



woman suffering from social anxiety


Overcome Social Anxiety By Undergoing Psychotherapy


Cognitive-behavioral therapy (CBT) is a type of psychotherapy that's useful in treating social anxiety disorder. With CBT, you'll learn various ways of behaving, thinking, and reacting to different situations, so you'll feel less fearful and anxious. Also, CBT can help prevent relapse, overcome trauma, learn positive coping mechanisms, and treat mental illness.


Here's how CBT is performed:


  • The therapist will gather information by asking the possible sources of anxiety you like to discuss and work on. Take advantage of the first session to interview the therapist and to understand the goal of CBT.

  • Once you have identified the problems you like to work on, you'll be encouraged to share your thoughts. Also, the therapist may ask you to keep a diary of your thoughts.

  • To help you become aware of thinking and behavior patterns, your therapist will ask you to pay close attention to your body responses, emotions, and behaviors in different situations.

  • The therapist will encourage you to assess whether you have an accurate perception of what's going on. While this step can be challenging, constant practice with it becomes a habit without taking so much effort.

Get Help Through Social Anxiety Support Groups


Support groups are important for many patients with social anxiety. In a group having the same condition, people with social anxiety disorder can receive unbiased and honest feedback or opinions. In that way, you'll come to realize if your thoughts are already distorted. Also, you'll learn how other patients with social anxiety disorder overcome fearful social situations.


You can get help by calling support hotlines or phone numbers of an NGO's rendering services to people with psychological disorders, including social anxiety disorder. The National Alliance on Mental Illness is dedicated to building better lives for Americans by providing support and assistance. There are also online support platforms you can chat or talk to if you're shy getting help in a face-to-face encounter.


Conclusion


Social anxiety is characterized by an intense and persistent fear of social judgment. However, people with this mental health condition can get help by talking to the right people, like a psychiatrist or psychologist. 


Also, joining social support groups and undergoing cognitive behavioral therapy can help a person with social anxiety disorder find acceptable ways of approaching fearful social situations.





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