Analysis Of Social Anxiety Disorder (SAD)

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Introduction. Social Anxiety Disorder (SAD) is defined by the Social Anxiety Institute as “the fear of interaction with other people that brings on self-consciousness, feelings of being negatively judged and evaluated, and, as a result leads to avoidance (…) to feelings of inadequacy, inferiority, embarrassment, humiliation and depression.” (Thomas A. Richards, n.d.) It is one the most common psychiatric disorders that 12% of the population will experience the condition at some point in their lives (Franklin R. Schneier, 2006). However other estimates suggest that the percentage is 20%-41% (Beidel, et al., 1985), as some sufferer’s symptoms may stop them from seeking help. The disorder can lead to depression and substance abuse, what more…show more content…
Social Anxiety Disorder (SAD), also known as Social Phobia, is the phobia of interacting with others which bring on self-consciousness and feelings that they are being negatively judged by other people. This leads to avoidance of social situations, feelings of inadequacy, inferiority, embarrassment, humiliation and depression (Thomas A. Richards, n.d.). Physical symptoms include elevated heartbeat, excessive sweating, trembling and inability to concentrate (Stein & Stein, 2008). The disorder is highly complex and can be very restricting to the sufferer. There are seven diagnostic criteria (from the current DSM-5) for diagnosing people with the disorder; “A. A persistent fear of one or more social or performance situations in which the person is exposed to unfamiliar people or to possible scrutiny by others. The individual fears that he or she will act in a way (or show anxiety symptoms) that will be embarrassing and humiliating. B. Exposure to the feared situation almost invariably provokes anxiety, which may take the form of a situationally bound or situationally pre-disposed Panic Attack. C. The person recognizes that this fear is unreasonable or…show more content…
However some studies using neuroimaging have shown increased reactivity in the amygdala when shown faces and other social cues, further studies have revealed irregularities with the serotonin and dopamine systems (Franklin R. Schneier, 2006). Cognitive Behavioural Therapy. “Cognitive-Behavioural Therapy (CBT) is the most thoroughly studied nonpharmacological approach to the treatment of social anxiety…” (Heimberg, 2002). It is also the most popular treatment for SAD (U. Stangier, 2003) CBT as a treatment for social anxiety helps patients to learn the cognitive and behavioural competencies they need to function in social situations and on their own, using exposure, cognitive reconstruction, relaxation training and social skills training (Heimberg, 2002). Aaron Beck (1967) developed a system where therapists help patients catch their negative thoughts and challenge them, he also developed the cognitive triad that explain the three forms of negative thinking; negative view of self, negative view of the world, and negative view of the future (McLeod,

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