It’s normal to feel a bit ill at ease in a crowd. However, people who have social anxiety disorder have such feelings in an overbearing, constant wave. According to the National Institute for Mental Health, this disorder is described as an intense fear that others are watching and judging you at all times, causing a want to withdraw from society. While social anxiety exposure therapy is a way to help, it’s also important to understand the science behind this disorder.
Our minds are a fascinating thing that has yet to be fully understood. According to Psych Central, an online psychological publication, people who have social anxiety disorder have a larger amygdala than others. This part of the brain is part of your emotional control as well as your memories and learning. That might make you more susceptible to those anxious feelings.
Did you have something embarrassing happen in a certain situation that resulted in a lot of people looking at you? This could result in learned anxiety and make you want to withdraw from people so that it won’t happen again. A professional therapist would have you do social anxiety exposure therapy, where you put yourself in social situations again to conquer those feelings.
Recently research has indicated that an imbalance in this particular neurotransmitter that regulates emotions can play a part in social anxiety disorder. Getting that balance back could help people regulate their feelings.
Overcoming Societal Influence
Social anxiety is a very real experience for many individuals, and it’s not a matter of “getting over it.” Many people struggle to differentiate an extreme introvert from someone who has social anxiety disorder. It can be difficult for them to understand what is going on in another person’s head, and that lack of empathy can make matters even harder. That’s why it’s important to work with experienced therapists. These professionals can provide psychoeducation about the disorder, discuss various therapeutic options, and help clients slowly progress in society.
Are you suffering from social anxiety disorder? We are a team of licensed therapists who can help you with this via social anxiety exposure therapy. Please contact Trauma Healing NW today for more information. We are eager to meet you!