According to the Anxiety and Depression Association of America, Social Anxiety Disorder is the fear of being scrutinized and judged by others in social or performance situations. Social Anxiety Disorder can cause an immense amount of pain for any adolescent who has it. The disorder has a wide range of effects. It can go anywhere from being a minor obstacle in an adolescents life, to ruining the upbringing of a teenager. Fortunately, the symptoms are very noticeable, and if treated early, a child can be alleviated of the many consequences related to the disorder.
- Around 15 million adults suffer from Social Anxiety Disorder
- 36% of people with Social Anxiety Disorder do not seek help until 10 or more years of reported symptoms
- The disorder usually begins around the age of 13
Social Anxiety Disorder symptoms are prevalent throughout all facets of a teenager’s life. It can be seen through his temperament, schoolwork, emotional and physical behavior, and a child’s interaction with peers.
- Child is very quiet and keeps to him/herself
- Becomes embarrassed or humiliated very easily
- May perform poorly in school
- Doesn’t participate in class and doesn’t have the motivation to work hard
Interaction with Peers
- Rarely participates in activities with peers
- Often feels uncomfortable around peers, and might have very few friends.
- Avoids eye contact
- Fear that they will embarrass themselves, causing extreme self- consciousness and low self-esteem
- Often worried and stressed out
- Vomiting and upset stomach
- Shaking and feelings of dizziness
- Tightness in chest due to stress
Social Anxiety Disorder can have detrimental effects on any teenager. But if a parent carefully observes the symptoms of their son or daughter, they can immediately begin to work on alleviating the effects of the disorder. And if treated properly, a parent can ensure their teenager has a fulfilling childhood without the fear of being judged by others.
Written by Joshua Rosenthal, PsyD