Social anxiety is the third most common mental health disorder in the U.S. (just after depression and alcoholism). Social anxiety is the extreme fear of being judged in social situations, such as talking to strangers, speaking in groups, giving a presentation, performing on stage, or just talking to co-workers or classmates. A person with social anxiety is often self-conscious and nervous, believing that others are silently judging or criticizing them, or are watching very closely for mistakes. The person is afraid he (or she) will make a mistake, look bad, or be humiliated in front of others. Social anxiety is not just shyness.
Both introverts and extroverts can have social anxiety. Many people with social anxiety appear to be functioning just fine. They go to school or to work, and are able to hide some of their feelings. Meantime, the person experiences enormous stress trying to manage these feelings throughout the day. The exhaustion from trying to cope can trigger additional mental health problems such as depression or substance abuse, panic attacks, physical health problems, and more.
Sometimes people with social anxiety are not aware of the problem. They just know they feel stressed a lot and don’t enjoy being around others very much. They often blame others for problems in the relationship. Meantime, other people may think they are not friendly, aloof, or difficult. Such confusion also happens with other types of social problems, so an accurate diagnosis from a mental health professional is important.
Each individual with Social Anxiety has a unique pattern of situations that are difficult. The triggers vary from one person to another, but usually involve avoidance of situations and/or difficulty performing.
Through careful assessment, Dr. Conlon will help determine if the difficulties you are facing may be due to social anxiety. Dr. Conlon is dedicated to providing the most effected treatment strategies for Social Anxiety.
Treatment progresses at your own pace. Cognitive-Behavior Therapy is practical and results-oriented. You will learn skills during sessions and apply them through homework and practice between sessions to help you achieve the goals that you have chosen for yourself.
Conlon Psychological Services is proud to be the Houston/Sugar Land Regional Clinic of the National Social Anxiety Center (NSAC). NSAC was established with the intent of making the highest quality, evidence-based psychotherapy services to treat social anxiety available to those in need. We aim to do this through research, collaboration, dissemination to clinicians and educating the public. Visit NSAC here for more information about Social Anxiety.
Is it Asperger's or Anxiety? Dr. Tony Attwood is a well-respected psychologist who studies and treats individuals with Asperger's Syndrome. In his 2006 book, he states "Social phobia, or social anxiety disorder, would be expected to be relatively common for those with Asperger Syndrom, especially in the teenage and adult years when they are more acutely aware of their confusion in social situations, or making social mistakes, and possible suffering ridicule."
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