Everyone can relate to feeling anxious before giving a presentation or participating in class. But those with social anxiety disorder experience a much greater fear of being judged and negatively evaluated by their peers. Social Anxiety in teens makes it incredibly hard for them to live a normal and healthy life. Social anxiety is the third most common psychological disorder and thirteen percent of people meet diagnosable criteria for this condition.
Symptoms of Social Anxiety
Typical symptoms of social anxiety in teens include increased worrying, tension, tiredness, and fear. These symptoms in teens often prevent them from living normal lives and keeping up with their everyday routines. It can be detrimental to their success in school and on their relationships with their peers. Anxiety disorders are the most common type of mental disorder present within the general population. The CDC estimates that the lifetime prevalence of teen anxiety and other anxiety disorders is more than 15 percent.
Dr. Suma Chand
A recent article by PsyBlog discusses how the best way to deal with social anxiety in teens is to have them face there fears and emotions. Dr. Suma Chand, a clinical psychologist who treats social anxiety in teens states:
“The more you feed it, the stronger it grows. Fear traps people. Fear puts you in a box. Your world gets smaller and smaller. After a while, you’re avoiding the discomfort of the fear itself, rather than the thing you fear. When you avoid the things you fear you feel safe and comfortable and you don’t want to do anything that will shake that safe cocoon of comfort. However you pay a heavy price—your freedom to live life like the way you really want to live.”
Dr. Suma Chand believes the best time to confront social anxiety in teens is when it’s causing them a lot of distress, and that distress has started to affect their life in a significantly negative way. To get people away from their anxieties, Dr. Suma Chand suggests having them look at their choices. They can either choose to step into the situations they fear in gradual stages or they can opt to avoid them. By tackling their fears, they take a step closer to achieving life goals and realizing their dreams, but opting out guarantees them that nothing will change.
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