Social Anxiety Disorder 101 – Easy Self Assessment Tool

Social Anxiety Disorder 101: easy self assessment tool

Self assessment is very significant in early detection of anxiety and stress related illness such as Social Anxiety Disorder. Certain situations like giving a speech, attending a social engagement alone, going in a job interview and interacting with strangers or opposite sex makes people nervous and anxious especially on their first time. However, experience and practice makes these situations more manageable. In a person with Social Anxiety Disorder, these events and other social situations can be very terrifying and frightening leading them to disability and life impairing situations. Moreover, whenever a person with social anxiety disorder faces social and performance situations he/she becomes rigorously anxious to the point where panic and incapacity takes place. Low self esteem and concern about others’ judgments are where this illness rooted. They fear situations where they appeared to be socially inept as well as becoming an embarrassment and humiliation. According to US Census Bureau International Data Base 2004, the incidence rate of Social Anxiety Disorder is approximately 27 or 3.70% or 10.1 million people in USA while prevalence rate is approximately 1 in 51 or 1.95% or 5.3 million people in USA. The estimated lifetime prevalence is at 7%-12%. Although there are small prevalence and incidence rate in the United States, Social anxiety Disorder influenced millions of people, and frequently getting in the way to our adult life. Early detection is vital in order to receive prompt treatment. To be able to detect this disorder immediately, self assessment is very essential. Here is a self assessment tool which serves as a guideline to help you determine the presence and severity of this illness. Asking these questions to yourself evaluates whether you are at risk or have high chances of acquiring Social Anxiety Disorder.

• Discomfort
Do you feel uncomfortable during these social and performance situations? How uncomfortable? Normally, a person may feel uncomfortable during these situations but to a person with Social Anxiety Disorder or otherwise known as Social Phobia they experienced excessive and high level of discomfort to the point where it leads to uncontrollable situations. Under intense fear and discomfort, panic attack may take place.

• Physical symptoms
Does the thought of entering these social and performance situations make you nervous to the point where you are having excessive sweating, palpitations and chest pain? Aside from cognitive and behavioural symptoms, Social Anxiety Disorder are often accompanied by physical symptoms which includes excessive sweating, palpitations nausea, chest pain ,and stammering that is often accompanied with rapid speech.

• Overly self-conscious
Are you afraid of embarrassing yourself when doing something? Is this happens all the time? People with Social Anxiety Disorder or Social Phobia are overly conscious about themselves, having high expectation of one’s self and paying high attention on ones self after the activity. They often have negative thoughts about the situation and about themselves. Oftentimes, these negative thoughts indicate negative assessment of one ’s self. For example, before giving a speech you are bothered by the thoughts of “what if I stammered or if I make mistake?” “What if I didn’t do well or what if I forgot everything?” These thoughts keep occurring before and during these social and performing tasks that impairs your relationship to people and to your normal routines.

• Feelings of Illogical and Irrational
Do you recognize that the fear experienced is accompanied by irrational, illogical and unreasonable feelings? Are you aware that having too much fear with social and performance situations is excessive and very immoderate? Oftentimes, in adults they are present, whereas, in children they are often missing.

• Alienation
Do you feel like you are being scrutinized and humiliated constantly by the public? Do you feel alienated every time you entered any social and performing situations? Feelings of constant humiliation, embarrassment and alienation during social and performing situations are constant to a person with Social Anxiety Disorder. Assessing yourself whether this characteristics are present leads to prevention of life impairing situations.

• Anxious and panicky
Do you feel anxious and panicky while at these social and performance situations? Do you feel suddenly anxious when performing in front of people? Or just being the center of attention makes you panicky? Being extremely anxious and panicky during all social and performance situations are just one of the characteristics of Social Anxiety Disorder or Social Phobia.

• Avoidance
Are you avoiding all social and performance situations that come your way? Do you stay away or keep away to avoid social situations in which you might be expected to execute? According to studies, phobias are controlled by escape and avoidance behaviours. For example, a person decides to leave the room when he/she was assigned to talk in front of the class. Escaping is his/her best solution to avoid previously experienced attack. Furthermore, major cases include repetitive behaviours of dishonesty in order to avoid situations wherein self image and reputation is at risk while Minor cases consist of avoiding eye contact and crossing their arms preventing them from showing others that they were shaking.

• Interferences with daily functioning
Does your avoidance of such situations interfere with your daily functioning? A person with Social Anxiety Disorder has a marked avoidance of social and performance situations which leads them to interferences to activities of daily living as well as to ones daily functioning where severe distress is noted.

• Authority Figures
Does dealing with authoritative figures such as your boss, a well known personality or your professor makes you extremely nervous as well as severely discomfort that almost lead you to a panic attack? As mentioned above, extreme nervousness, discomfort and other above mentioned characteristics marked the qualities of this disorder. Self assessment and awareness is very important in the early detection of Social Anxiety Disorder.

If your answer is “Yes” to majority of questions listed above, then the chances are you are experiencing and suffering from a Social Anxiety Disorder or Social Phobia. Through this Self assessment tool, Social anxiety Disorder will be easily detected. Although it can help to diagnose this illness, Self assessment is not used alone. Self assessment should be done with a proper consultation to a psychiatrist to decide whether you are diagnosed of this illness. Aside from this self assessment tool, other test is done to accurately and finally determine Social Anxiety Disorder.

The development of Social Anxiety Disorder or Social phobia varies from people to people. Other usually begins to notice it during their early teens and others develop later in life, wherein there is an increased social demand. Social Anxiety Disorder Often runs in the families and sometimes it leads to major problems such as substance abuse as well as depression. Usually, negative and traumatic experiences trigger this illness affecting your quality of life. People with Social Anxiety Disorder are at risk of having a poor quality of life wherein they have no ability of sustaining good relationships as well as romantic relationship. In some cases, other people used Alcohol or Drugs to overcome their anxiety. Although symptoms greatly affect ones quality of life, the good news is this kind of illness responds well to treatment. Seeking treatment is essential for finding relief and various treatments are present to help you feel the quality of life both in mind and in body. Because people with Social Anxiety Disorder usually fears to consult treatment, self assessment plays a big role in early prevention as well as early detection of this life impairing illness, the Social Anxiety Disorder.