June 19, 2019
Posted by: cbtkeadmin
Social Anxiety Disorder – CBT Kenya
A person with social anxiety disorder feels symptoms of anxiety in certain or all social situations. Sometimes, they end up staying away from places where they think they have to do something that will embarrass them. People with social anxiety disorder often feel like they will say or do the wrong thing.
Social anxiety disorder usually starts during youth in people who are extremely shy. Without treatment, a social anxiety disorder can last for many years or a lifetime and prevent a person from reaching his or her full potential.
Who does it affect?
Without treatment, a social anxiety disorder can last for a long time. Unfortunately, many people never seek help for social anxiety disorder. There are some groups of people at higher risk of experiencing social anxiety disorder:
- Age—Social anxiety disorder often starts sometime between childhood and teenage years. The majority of people with a social anxiety disorder say that their symptoms started before they were 18.
- Women—Women are more likely to experience social anxiety disorder than men.
- Other mental illnesses or substance use disorder—Many people with social anxiety disorder have other mental illness like depression. However, social anxiety seems to appear before other mental illnesses.
Understanding the causes of social anxiety disorder
Many people struggle with these fears. But the situations that trigger the symptoms of social anxiety disorder can be different. CBT is based on the premise that what you think affects how you feel, and your feelings affect your behaviour.
- Environment. A social anxiety disorder may be a learned behaviour. Some people may develop the condition after an unpleasant or embarrassing social situation. Your upbringing can also impact the likelihood that you might develop SADly. As a child, you may not have been exposed to enough social situations.
- Family history. You’re more likely to develop social anxiety disorder if your biological parents or siblings have the condition.
- Personality. Children who are shy, timid, withdrawn or restrained when facing new situations or people may be at greater risk.
You can overcome social anxiety disorder
- Analyze and challenge these thoughts. It helps to ask yourself questions about negative thoughts. Ask yourself if you’re engaging in any of the following unhelpful thinking styles;
- Mind reading – Assuming you know what other people are thinking, and that they see you in the same negative way that you see yourself.
- Personalizing – Assuming that people are focusing on you in a negative way or that what’s going on with other people has to do with you.
- Fortune telling – Predicting the future, usually while assuming the worst will happen. You just “know” that things will go horribly, so you’re already anxious before you’re even in the situation.
- Face your fears. Avoidance keeps social anxiety disorder going. In fact, the more you avoid a feared social situation, the more frightening it becomes.
- Keep a journal. Keeping track of your personal life can help you and your mental health professional identify what’s causing you stress and what seems to help you feel better.
- Therapy. Of all the professional treatments available, cognitive-behavioural therapy (CBT) has been shown to work best for treating social anxiety disorder. CBT is based on the premise that what you think affects how you feel, and your feelings affect your behaviour.
At CBT Kenya, we have a professional team that will help you deal with this kind of disorder. Give us a call on 0739 935 333/0756 454 585 or visit our website for more details.