Social Anxiety Disorder essay

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Social anxiety disorder refers to a condition where a person feels intensely anxious about everyday life public interactions (Antony & Rowa, 2008). People with this disorder understand that they have excessive fear towards public confrontations, but are unable to overcome the fear. People suffering from social anxiety disorder feel that other people are watching their actions and judging them negatively. To avoid feeling insecure and uncomfortable, these people prefer reaming indoors or with their family members. As people suffering from social anxiety disorder try to avoid social situations, they find themselves lonely. Social anxiety is a common disorder and affects 7% to 14% of people during a certain time in the lives (Soravia, 2005).   This paper discusses the causes and social anxiety disorder symptoms. In addition, the paper also looks at common anxiety-causing situations and possible remedies to this disorder that affects a significantly large number of people.

Social anxiety disorder possibly arises from interactions of genes and the environment. One possible cause is inherited traits (Soravia, 2005).  Studies have shown that certain families are associated with this disorder hence the conclusion that it is inherited. The studies, however, do not show the extent to which the social anxiety disorder cause is inherited traits. There is a possibility of contraction to this that to some extent, it is caused by learned behavior. Another likely cause is brain chemistry. Natural chemicals in the body may have a role to play in causing social anxiety disorder. One example of a brain chemical whose imbalance may cause social anxiety disorder is serotonin. One of the roles or functions of serotonin are to regulate emotions and moods. Extra concentrations of serotonin, which is a neurotransmitter, may cause social anxiety disorder (Bandelow & Stein, 2004). Amygdala, a brain structure, could also possibly cause social anxiety disorder. Those people with an overactive amygdala cold have more response to fear. This will make them have anxiety when in social situations. Negative experiences in life could also cause social anxiety disorder. Children who experience bullying, teasing, rejection or humiliations remain vulnerable and susceptible to social anxiety disorder. Family conflicts, sexual abuses and other forms of social harassments may also cause someone to become social anxiety disorder prone.

The main social anxiety disorder symptom is intense anxiety while in public places.  This makes the individual to avoid such public places (Antony & Rowa, 2008). A person suffering from social anxiety disorder has excessive fear the he or she will be scrutinized by others and in the end be negatively judged. A person who has social anxiety disorder may show physical symptoms such as anxiety, confusion, sweating, pounding heart, blushing, shaking, upset stomach, muscle tension and even diarrhea. People who have social anxiety disorder also have difficulties in making and keeping friends. In some cases, they worry for days and weeks about where other people will be during future events. Situation that may cause anxiety include performing tasks when in front of people such as eating, drinking, writing or dancing. Any situation that will make a person the center of attention is likely to cause anxiety (Bandelow & Stein, 2004).

The best treatment for is medication, psychotherapy or both. The most effective psychotherapy is Cognitive-Behavioral Therapy (Axelby, 2009).  In this therapy, the patient suffering from is encouraged to replace negative thoughts with positive ones. Besides thoughts, the patient is encouraged to replace any negative behaviors that he or she may be having. The person administering the therapy must emphasize on the development of new coping skills and reduction of avoidance to social situations. Patient gain knowledge on how to modify negative stimuli and shun sad feelings and thoughts that hinder smooth social interactions.  When it comes to medication, the most effective medication applicable to social anxiety disorder is antidepressants. An example of this is Benzodiazepines. Beta-blockers, which are often used for heart conditions, may be used to minimize anxiety symptoms such as shaking and rapid heartbeats. Cognitive-Behavioral Therapy has proven to have long lasting effects that medication, but a combination of the two treatment methods would be an excellent idea (Soravia, 2005).  

In conclusion, social anxiety disorder is a serious health condition and requires serious attention. The purpose of the paper was to provide an understanding of social anxiety disorder. The paper has gone to the extent of explaining the possible causes of social anxiety disorder, its symptoms and remedies. A comprehensive understanding of social phobia is important because it will help one to appreciate others as they are. With a perfect knowledge base on social anxiety disorder, a person will be in a position to assist someone suffering from this disorder. People should encourage those suffering from this disorder to develop positive feelings and thoughts about public interactions (Axelby, 2009). There are studies and researches going on that try to look at ways of helping those that suffer from this disorder. The studies are looking for ways that will help people with social anxiety disorder to lead a normal life.

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