Social Anxiety Disorder also known as Social Phobia is a type of anxiety disorder that is characterized by anxiety provoked by exposure to a certain types of social or performance situations, often leading to avoidance behavior.
The diagnosis of Social phobia is appropriate only if the avoidance, fear, or anxious anticipation of encountering the social or performance situations interferes significantly with the person’s daily routine, occupational functioning, or social life, or if the person is markedly distressed about having the phobia.
If an individual that lives in the desert is afraid of snows that is not a problem and shouldn’t be diagnosed as phobia because that particular fear doesn’t interfere significantly with the person’s everyday life.
On the other side, if that same individual is afraid of sand he or she should be treated for the obvious reason.
As you can notice something is a problem only if it represents a problem to us or, as somebody else would say, if we choose it to be our problem. This is a good news because it is telling you that the only thing you need to do to get better is to change yourself or to be more specific your perception of your life and the world around you.
Why is this good news?
It is a good news because it just so happens that the only person on this planet that you can change is yourself. Of course it is not easy but it can be done. In psychotherapy you can learn how to do it and you can get all the necessary information, professional guidance and support.
Laying on the couch, doing nothing and waiting for miracle to happen is exceeded. If you want to get better you need to take part in your psychotherapy and together with your therapist work on your disorder.
Social Anxiety Disorder is treatable and majority of people that get an appropriate treatment get better or healed. Therefore there is no good reason for you to live with this disorder.
Also if one type of therapy doesn’t work for you don’t give up. There are many other types of treatments including different kinds of counseling, psychotherapies, natural supplements and medication. You can always give up but before you do remember that everything is easier than living with Social Anxiety Disorder.
Family support can play an important role in Social Anxiety Disorder treatment. This is why it is strongly recommended that close family members or friends get involved in treatment. Good support is essential however bad “support” is disastrous. Therefore if family members want to help someone they need to learn how to do it first.
What is the best treatment for Social Anxiety Disorder?
Cognitive Behavioral Therapy is very successful in treating anxiety disorders in general and social phobia is no exception to the rule. However even though CBT is quite successful in treating these disorders it can’t be said that it is the best because there are other types of psychotherapy that might work for you.
Alcohol and Social Anxiety Disorder
Many people that suffer from Social Anxiety Disorder self-medicate with alcohol without knowing that that is the last thing they should be doing. If you suffer from Social Phobia alcohol is your enemy number one because it disguises itself as friend by reducing your symptoms while making you feel even more miserable, anxious and vulnerable in the long run.
If you have alcohol problems you need to be in alcohol counseling because there is no psychotherapy or medication that can help you if you abuse alcohol. That is how powerful alcohol is. Therefore don’t underestimate it.