Social Phobia, or Social Anxiety Disorder, is an anxiety disorder
characterized by overwhelming anxiety and excessive self-consciousness in
everyday social situations. Social phobia can be limited to only one type
of situation—such as a fear of speaking in formal or informal situations,
or eating or drinking in front of others—or, in its most severe form, may
be so broad that a person experiences symptoms almost anytime they are around
People with social phobia have a persistent, intense, and chronic
fear of being watched and judged by others and being embarrassed or humiliated
by their own actions. Their fear may be so severe that it interferes with
work or school, and other ordinary activities. Physical symptoms often accompany
the intense anxiety of social phobia and include blushing, profuse sweating,
trembling, nausea, and difficulty talking.
Effective treatments for social phobia are available, and research
is yielding new, improved therapies that can help most people with social
phobia and other anxiety disorders lead productive, fulfilling lives.
Locate mental health services in your area, affordable healthcare,
NIMH clinical trials, and listings of professionals and organizations.
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