Social phobia - how to get rid of it yourself, signs and overcoming

Do you or someone you know studiously avoid contact with people? Do you find it difficult to meet people, make contacts, or simply ride on public transport and ask the driver to brake at the desired stop? Does this cause you to have problems in your personal and professional sphere, and your whole life is permeated with a feeling of anxiety and discomfort, a desire to “withdraw into yourself”? It is possible that the above phenomena are signs of social phobia.

To confirm or refute this statement, I recommend reading the information below. In addition to describing the essence of the phenomenon, from the article you will receive practical recommendations for overcoming fear, you will be able to better understand yourself and find the root causes of social phobia. But first things first.

What is social phobia?

Experts believe that one of the most common mental disorders is social phobia.
In psychology, it is believed that this disease is truly a social anxiety disorder, the fight against which is fraught with certain difficulties. It is expressed, first of all, in fear of people, going out into society, performing social activities, performing actions in front of many people. Moreover, fear is so strong that it can lead to paralysis of a person’s will and even thoughts. It’s as if he doesn’t understand what to do, what to say, there are disturbances in speech, trembling of the limbs. Despite the fact that a person is considered not only a biological, but also a social creature, the symptoms of social phobia can manifest themselves in absolutely everyone. Another question is that it is a sick person who is not able to live peacefully in society or interact with other people. He may suffer from a nervous breakdown, be in long-term depression, and think about attempting suicide. In any case, this disease must be treated, as a person’s life only gets worse. No independent attempts to overcome the situation or cope with this diagnosis will lead to an improvement in life and health. It is important to understand the causes, signs and treatment of this disorder.

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The Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders (DSM), Fifth Edition, specifies the criteria for diagnosing social phobia. The patient should exhibit the following symptoms:

  • noticeable anxiety or fear due to a social situation (one or more) where he will be under close attention;
  • fear of being in an awkward position, receiving a negative assessment from people, ridicule, insults, rejection;
  • active avoidance of the above situations;
  • fear about the same situations;
  • excessive fear that does not correspond to the threat (which, in general, does not exist);
  • fear and avoidance worsen the quality of life, interfere with normal social activities and work.

The psychiatrist must make sure that the patient does not have other phobias that cause fear: PTSD, agoraphobia, body dysmorphic disorder, etc.

General information

A couple of years ago there was no information about such a mental disorder as social phobia. People did not even suspect that there was such a disease during which a person could not fully communicate with strangers, show shyness, embarrassment during new acquaintances. It is worth mentioning the fear of public speaking, complete avoidance of society. Medical experts seriously believed that voluntary hermits did not suffer from any phobia. Diagnostic measures revealed only the presence of a special neurosis, which could contain the following specific manifestations: the desire to be completely alone, embarrassment, shyness and isolation.

The achievements of science do not stand still. After some time, specialists from around the world conducted a lot of research, the results of which helped to come to a certain conclusion. It concerned a disorder that was observed in personality behavior. It, in turn, should have been classified as a separate category of phobias. Social anxiety was a combination of anxiety that was beyond any control, fear of society. These aspects led to the fact that social contacts of the patient were impossible.

It is worth mentioning that malfunctions in the psyche lead to the fact that the influence of external factors causes a reaction in the body that is much different from the reaction that takes place in any other situation. The behavior of a person who suffers from social phobia will be characterized by the presence of such features as: illogicality, irrationality, persistence of an anxious state, and specificity. It is important to note that a person with social phobia may experience serious difficulties talking on the phone, reading a report, even an interview.

Most often, it is the fear of society that is associated with the cause of the fear of hearing a negative assessment of one’s own personality. A person is so unsure of himself that he fears that people will judge his appearance, his actions, and criticize absolutely every word. It’s as if they are faced with the fact that every time they have to prove to themselves and the people around them the right to exist, to the peculiarities of their behavior. Because of this, social phobes are not able to experience pleasant emotions, to live in unity with themselves, with people and the whole world.

People with this mental disorder may actively strive for loneliness and minimize communication with other people. They experience severe anxiety and emotional stress, which leads to exhaustion of the nervous system, depressive disorders, and various diseases. To get rid of anxiety and the desire to get at least some kind of relaxation, patients can drink alcohol and drugs. They may suffer from gambling addiction, since in virtual reality there is no point in adjusting their behavior to the expectations of other people. They can take on any role, they feel more free when they can communicate through social networks, immerse themselves in the world of forums, and role-playing word games. It is important to mention that people fail to manage their own lives, achieve self-realization, and successfully start a family.

Clinical picture

Social phobia is a pathological fear of social contacts and activities accompanied by the attention of strangers. This is a serious neurotic disorder that is chronic in nature and usually occurs without remission.

Social phobia, as a rule, begins to develop in childhood and adolescence. Up to 90 percent of social phobias develop the disease before the age of 25. Such an early onset of social disorder and lack of treatment often causes disturbances in normal personality development. Social phobes have difficulty obtaining an education and are unable to fully demonstrate their professional qualities, which contributes to the development of disability, a low level of material security and dependence on relatives. Social phobia negatively affects the ability to form close relationships and leads to loneliness.

What social phobias exist?

Social fear can manifest itself too acutely, leading a person to panic attacks. If social anxiety is moderate, the patient is still able to assess the situation realistically in order to take control of his feelings, despite the presence of strong anxiety. A person diagnosed with social phobia suffers from a constant, severe anxiety state. They were divided into two groups: delineated social phobia - fear can manifest itself in standard situations (the need to interact with cashiers in a store, speaking in front of a large audience, a job interview, the need to communicate with neighbors), generalized - a feeling of fear appears in a wide variety of situations. situations during which you have to interact with society.

Regardless of the types of social phobia that have been listed, it is important to mention that the signs of the disorder will be the same in any case. It is necessary to mention that these symptoms are temporary or permanent. The following example can be given. One day, a child was ridiculed while speaking to his classmates. Since then, he has no desire to prepare reports or retell the material he has read.

One can also note a completely different type of development of a phobia, during which the child will categorically refuse to attend an educational institution or try to walk in the park. Nobody understands what is causing this fear in society. It is quite possible that this fear will not go away in adolescence or adulthood. Here we can talk about social phobia, since there are no objective reasons. People simply do not understand what is happening, but they experience a real fear of society and are unable to cope with this problem on their own. It is worth mentioning that relatives of a person with social phobia can provide a certain “disservice”. They believe that the whole point is shyness, and, therefore, it is necessary to communicate more with other people and boldly go out into society. Unfortunately, these measures are in no way capable of helping a person with this diagnosis.

general information

The term “social phobia” comes from the Latin word “socius,” which translates as “common, shared,” and the ancient Greek word “fobos,” which means “fear.” Social phobia is a panicky fear of social interaction with society. A social phobe is a person who is afraid of contacting other people, for example, speaking in public, riding public transport, working in a team, etc.

Fear is based on the fear of receiving a negative assessment from others. A social phobe is most afraid of appearing ridiculous, stupid, funny, awkward, etc. It seems to him that those around him are carefully watching him. Therefore, even a fleeting glance from a passerby on the street causes panic. And there is no question of engaging in any activity in front of other people.

Unlike other phobias, social disorder is characterized by a constant state of anxiety. In simple terms, a social phobe experiences fear almost all the time, and not only at the moment of direct contact with people. Until this contact occurs, the social phobia does not let go of the anxious expectation. After the communication is over, he begins to think for a painfully long time about the situation, about what bad people thought about him.

An incessant feeling of anxiety poisons the life of a social phobe. And in moments of direct contact with people, fear increases sharply, which even leads to the development of a panic attack. For a social phobe, attempts to:

  • to make friends;
  • get a job that involves contact with people;
  • arrange your personal life;
  • go to the shop;
  • visit a doctor;
  • go to the cinema, cafe or attend other entertainment events.

A social phobe has to live alone, avoiding situations in which it is necessary to interact with the human community. As a result, he misses out on a lot of opportunities.

Social phobia is sometimes confused with the following concepts:

  1. Anthropophobia is the fear of people. A person suffering from this type of phobia is afraid of specific groups of people or all people in general, regardless of whether he has contact with them or not. Fear arises only at one glance at the object of phobia. This is written in more detail in the article “How to stop being afraid of people.”
  2. Agoraphobia is the fear of crowds or large gatherings of people. Fear is based on a feeling of danger and threat to life.
  3. Sociopathy is a personality disorder in which a person completely ignores the moral norms and norms of behavior accepted in society.

What is the difference between sociopathy and social phobia?

When the average person hears these terms, they may get the feeling that there is no difference between social phobia and sociopathy. Experts believe that these diseases should be distinguished, as they have significant differences. It is worth understanding that social phobia is a social anxiety disorder. Sociopathy is considered a dissociative identity disorder. At the same time, a social phobe has a fear of society and of performing any actions that involve attention from other people. At the same time, a sociopath is, first of all, a person with a mental illness. His behavior includes impulsiveness and aggressiveness. Most often, people simply ignore all the norms and rules that are accepted by society. They are distinguished by conflict and complete indifference to the world around them. They do not have any emotional or physical attachments. They like to lead an antisocial lifestyle.

A significant difference between the mentioned concepts is that, in fact, a person with social phobia may well exercise control over their own fears in order to subsequently manage them. At the same time, sociopathy is the most pronounced form of mental illness, but a person cannot be cured on his own. In any case, he will need medical help from professionals. There is an opinion that schizophrenia should be equated to such phenomena as social phobia and sociopathy. It's a delusion. Schizophrenia is a much more severe mental disorder that can affect behavioral characteristics, the sphere of consciousness, thinking processes, the emotional component, and the necessary motor function. This disease can be called truly considered serious and truly dangerous, which cannot be considered related to the phobia of social activities. In any case, it will require treatment, which cannot be postponed.

Who's at risk

There are a certain number of risk factors that can increase the likelihood of the disorder:

  • Genetic predisposition (children of social phobes are more likely to have various phobias than others).
  • Improper upbringing: strict and demanding parents, lack of emotional intimacy, constant expectation of punishment.
  • Parental overprotection (adults unknowingly prevent the child from growing up and establishing broad social relationships).
  • Rejection and disapproval in the children's team.
  • High level of anxiety and frequent conflicts in the social environment.

Symptoms of social phobia

The presence of this diagnosis in a person can be noticed with the naked eye due to the presence of pronounced symptoms, which can be divided into four categories: those associated with physiology, the emotional sphere, cognitive manifestations, and behavioral characteristics.

Physical symptoms can show those around the presence of a pronounced anxiety state in a person. They can be noted without problems in circumstances when a person is obliged to prepare for public speaking and to prepare for communication with strangers.

The following manifestations can be noted: difficulty breathing; rapid heartbeat, presence of tachycardia; dizziness; chills; trembling of limbs; gagging; abdominal pain; throbbing headache; shortness of breath and fatigue; muscle weakness; increased sweating. It is important to note pale skin or severe redness and dilated pupils. Severe fear leads to a state of stupor, and speech can become slurred. He will stutter and speak too quickly. Some panic attacks may occur. Due to strong emotions, the patient may succumb to tears.

Psychological symptoms may include a constant feeling of fear and extreme stress. This happens every time a social phobia needs to leave their comfort zone. The person feels in real danger, experiences serious tension, irritability and anxiety. You can forget about a restful sleep. A person has nightmares, as a result of which it is impossible to get a full night's sleep.

A patient with social phobia constantly expects the worst outcome of events, and from time to time they experience the feeling that they have already been in similar circumstances. It was as if they had experienced this emotional state before. A person experiences real panic: “I’m incredibly scared!”, “I don’t know what to do now!” To calm down, you have to resort to taking various medications, most often these are sleeping pills and sedatives.

It is important to understand that self-treatment cannot eliminate the causes of anxiety and fear. Only temporary relief can be achieved. If you take the same drugs for a very long time, you can achieve a dullness of sensations and a lack of reaction from the body.

Symptoms at the mental level are characterized by the occurrence of overly intrusive thoughts that relate to stressful situations, plans to achieve avoidance of the source of stress. Most often, a patient with social phobia is completely immersed in a state of panic and impending danger. Mental symptoms are especially pronounced in patients who are focused only on themselves. They are especially dependent on the opinions of people around them and are susceptible to criticism.

The following signs can be noted: excessive perfectionism regarding one’s appearance; too high demands that apply to yourself and the people around you; panic fear from the thought that one of the people will observe the actions and make an assessment; creating a negative opinion about yourself. At the same time, social phobics will make every effort to make the most pleasant impression. If nothing works, the behavior lends itself to careful analysis. They are in constant anxiety and reflection about their actions.

Behavioral symptoms include disturbing memories of similar experiences. One may note the presence of neurotic tics, aimless activity, and the need to frequently visit the toilet. Patients with social phobia tend not to look into the eyes of their interlocutor, so as not to detect criticism. They can become shy and tense during communication. They want to hide so as not to end up in a crowded place.

A person with social phobia views all people as enemies. They want to relieve tension with the help of alcohol and the use of illegal substances. You may find that the patient does not leave the house for days to avoid being under extreme stress.

Six steps to overcome social phobia

How to overcome social phobia? To overcome social phobia on your own, use a simple 6-step program (social phobia, way to overcome).


Anxiety is the result of self-hypnosis. By playing out negative scenarios of an upcoming event, you instill in yourself an attitude of anxiety and anticipation of danger directly during the event. Train yourself to think about the upcoming event at a time when you are in a relaxed state. Take a warm bath, light aromatic candles, achieve a calm and confident state. In this state, think about the upcoming event. Practice this as often as possible, soon a stable connection will be formed in your mind between a relaxed state, self-confidence and an exciting event.

Search for social phobic situations

The more you avoid something, the more dangerous it seems to your psyche. Therefore, stop avoiding frightening situations, consciously look for them, immerse yourself in them, imagine what worries you. Don't forget to relax beforehand.

Look around

A social phobe is obsessed with himself and self-control. Learn to notice what is happening around you and concentrate on the little things. For example, consider the color of the walls, people's clothes, the pictures that hang on the walls. If you feel that you are blushing or sweating, then try to switch your attention. The more you think, “I need to calm down,” the more anxious you become.

Ask questions

Learn to be interested in people, to switch attention from your inner world to the inner world of other people. Ask them questions that require a detailed answer. Listen carefully to the interlocutor, clarify something, ask additional questions, express your interest in the interlocutor.

Stop beating yourself up

Imagination is the enemy of a social phobe. The man is intimidating himself. For some reason he is sure that he can read people's thoughts. Every time you catch yourself trying to guess other people’s thoughts, say: “I actually don’t know what this person is thinking about me right now, or what people are thinking about me.”

Keep a positive attitude

Think about what thoughts you usually have when going into an exciting meeting. If you're thinking, "I hope I don't feel like I always do," that's completely wrong. But if you say “I feel great, I’m confident in myself,” this will create a positive attitude. Remember a situation in which you felt confident, remember this state, transfer it to the situation that is scary now.

Be yourself

The problem with a social phobe is that he does not accept himself, does not allow himself to be himself. Allow yourself to be imperfect, not like others, not what someone supposedly wants you to be. Play the role of a jester, allow yourself to be ridiculous and funny. This will give you confidence and allow you to relax. Practice in front of the mirror every day, then ask your friends to become your spectators.

What are the causes of social phobia?

In order to recover from this mental disorder, it is important to understand where society's fear comes from. Of course, it is best to look for the cause in the person’s childhood. Pathologies can be detected even in infancy, when the mother calmly left the child with other people. Thus, there is a violation of emotional attachment and failures in building trusting relationships.

The baby is simply afraid of losing his mother, as a result of which he is wary of the company of other people. It’s as if he believes that some kind of threat will come from them. You can detect the presence of restlessness, anxiety, and tearfulness in the baby. Subsequently, these adults may become alienated from people and become unsociable. We can safely declare the likelihood of misanthropy.

It is important to note that social phobia can be a consequence of overprotection. The child was taught that the world around him was full of dangers, and, therefore, people should be feared. Parents take too much care of their son and daughter, not giving them any opportunity for independent action. They are unable to do anything without the advice of their parents and their help.

Thus, a person becomes unsure of himself and his abilities. He is simply afraid of judgment of his own actions from other people. Often, social phobia is associated with an incident or psychological trauma received during adolescence. A child could easily be offended by his peers, bullied at school, taking advantage of his modesty and inability to stand up for himself.

This diagnosis can arise after experiencing severe stress. This applies to parental divorce, betrayal by a loved one, emotional and sexual abuse. Losing virginity is a sensitive issue. Any violence will lead to a lack of trust in other people and the manifestation of symptoms of social phobia. This applies to both men and women.

What is the treatment for social phobia?

It is worth noting that the problem of fear of society and people has been the subject of study for a long time. Today, specialists in the field of medicine and psychotherapy are aware of exactly how to rid a patient of social phobia. We can mention the availability of various exercises and psychotherapy, thanks to which it will be possible to overcome phobias.

It is important to note that before starting the fight, it is worth carrying out diagnostic measures to make sure that social phobia is present. It is quite possible that a person suffers from a depressive disorder or various types of psychopathy. Only after diagnosis can you safely begin rehabilitation.

Types of psychotherapy

The most effective treatment methods are Gestal therapy and cognitive behavioral psychotherapy. These programs are associated with teaching the patient to objectively perceive terrifying thoughts. The developed techniques will help get rid of psychological discomfort, many negative thoughts, and unpleasant sensations, in order to subsequently completely help with overcoming social fear.

This method of getting rid of social phobia, such as hypnosis techniques, has shown good results. It will allow us to directly influence the human psyche and consciousness. In this case, completely new views and convictions are instilled in a person, both on a subconscious and conscious level. Thus, the patient will perceive himself differently in order to significantly change his attitude towards social activities and society. To overcome social phobia, you can use medication treatment. Most often, specialists will prescribe antidepressants, benzodiazepines, anxiolytics, and other medications.

Most of the medications that are used are designed for short-term therapy to suppress feelings of anxiety. If the patient takes the medication for too long, he or she may experience addiction and other side effects. In no case should you practice only drug therapy.


Having social phobia is not a sentence to give up a full, harmonious life. It is important to understand that there are many people in the world who suffer from this diagnosis. Don’t be afraid to turn to a qualified specialist to overcome social phobia. It can deprive many of the joys of life: building interpersonal relationships, starting a family, moving up the career ladder.

The path to recovery will be quite difficult and long, but it can lead to a happy and normal life.

Consequences of a neglected phobia

A sociophobe is unhappy; he cannot find harmony within himself and in his relationships with the outside world. He is forced to constantly analyze, compare, prove, please. He does not know and does not accept himself, does not love himself. This means that the patient cannot build a career, organize his personal life, or start a family. Fear of social contacts makes a social phobe withdraw into himself and isolate himself within the walls of the house. In such conditions, self-development and self-realization are impossible. This lifestyle can lead to depression, addiction, and suicide attempts.

It is important! Because of the consequences, social phobia is secretly called the disease of missed opportunities.” You can’t delay treatment!

A social phobe is a person who loves solitude

The study of such a problem as social phobia began to be studied back in the 20th century. Before this, social phobias were viewed primarily as neuroses, with signs of a desire for loneliness and modesty.

Currently, the problem has become very urgent, because due to the growth and activity of the Internet, many people have moved online and it has become even more difficult for them to communicate with people in society. Therefore, now many psychologists and psychotherapists are faced with the problem of treating social phobia, due to its widespread occurrence in the world.

What is social phobia characterized by? And what is the difference between normal reactions to certain stressful situations?


Like many other phobias, social phobia is accompanied by increased anxiety, quickly reaching a peak and lasting for quite a long time.

Troubles can occur during any public action - be it a report in public, communication with another person in public, or simply inexplicable discomfort arising in society.

Most of all, social phobics are afraid of receiving a bad assessment of what they say, do, or how they behave.

A social phobe is a person who loves solitude. They may lead a solitary life, and yet they are prone to various kinds of addictions (alcohol, drugs) because it helps relieve anxiety and increase social function. There are also likely problems with creating a married couple, working and communicating with people in society. Often, a social phobia may have an increased tendency to suicidal thoughts and long-term depression.

Social phobia in teenagers

Difficulties could also appear at an earlier age - in teenagers, when the cause becomes some action that is a trigger for the individual. For example, a situation at school with sharp criticism (in public), or a conflict with someone in the team. After this, the child or teenager may lose the desire to attend any crowded events. And then fear and social phobia in adolescents spreads to the other gender, and difficulties in communication begin.

The causes of social phobia can be different, for example:

  • Negative reactions of parents to actions in childhood
  • Requirements are too high
  • Ridicule in a group or at home
  • Conflicts in a team or at school
  • Antisocial behavior of mom or dad
  • Problematic start to sexual life
  • Related and somatic problems

Social phobia in teenagers can become a serious problem if left untreated. Therefore, it is very important to identify the symptoms and signs below in time.

Social phobia. Signs.

Social phobes tend to be horrified by the fact that they might be watched and always try to look impeccable. Social phobia, the symptoms of which may be accompanied by increased control over all one’s actions, can be very inappropriate. It is human nature to make high demands on both oneself and others, trying to make a good impression on other people as much as possible. At the same time, they most often understand that they will not succeed.

In constant stress, a social phobia is forced to be in constant anxiety and think negatively, which only increases stress. Everything that can be scanned towards a social phobia is perceived negatively, self-esteem falls and prejudice towards one’s personality increases.

How to deal with social phobia

A good psychologist will tell you how to deal with social phobia. A specialist can conduct a complex of psychological and drug therapy, which will give a good effect. The main thing in the treatment of social phobia is to understand the problem, learn to correctly perceive oneself in society, master internal control, and remove negative experiences and disturbing thoughts. Cognitive and behavioral therapy can smooth out situations that provoke social phobia.

In general, hypnosis is very helpful in combating social phobia, because not everyone wants to take pills and antidepressants. In this case, hypnosis can be used to gently influence the situation, often having an excellent effect after just a few sessions of hypnosis!

If there is no point in enduring the problem anymore, the obvious solution would be to find out how to deal with social phobia at an appointment with a psychologist. Having resolved your issue with social phobia, you will become a much more self-confident person and increase your self-esteem. Your own opinion will be less jealous of others, you will be able to develop new qualities in yourself and reach a fundamentally new level in communication and work - the quality of your life as a whole will improve!

Drug treatment

For some people, self-treatment of phobic disorders is an overwhelming task. In this case, medical consultation and psychotherapeutic assistance are necessary. A specialist will help you choose the right methods for resolving internal conflicts and help destroy negative psychological attitudes. As part of complex treatment, tablets are used that reduce anxiety and prevent the occurrence of a panic attack. Most often used for therapeutic purposes:

  • benzodiazipines;
  • beta blockers;
  • tranquilizers;
  • antidepressants.

It is important to understand that the use of medications will not solve existing problems. Pharmacological drugs can reduce the manifestation of fear and other emotions. The main result is brought by psychotherapeutic methods of influence aimed at correcting behavioral patterns and psychological attitudes. In order to consolidate the result obtained, you should change your field of activity or go on a trip. Only in this way will the patient be able to understand that communicating with others can be a fun and interesting process.

It is very important to be able to decide to take the first step towards a new life. The process of changing one's own personality is quite long. It is almost impossible to cope with all the difficulties encountered along this path on your own. Therefore, you should not refuse the help of your close circle. During the first stages of treatment, ask someone close to you to take a walk with you in a crowded place. The support and attention of loved ones allows you to feel confident in your actions and create the right emotional mood.

Social phobia test

In order to understand in more detail, there is a test to see how socially phobic you are, and you can take it. You will need to see how you usually react to different situations. The test contains a description of 24 such situations, which can be answered with a score of 4 points. Description of ratings:

0 – no anxiety

1 – mild anxiety

2 – average anxiety

3 – severe anxiety

Check your total score and find out the answer to the social phobia test:

  • Talk on the phone in public
  • Participation in team activities
  • Eating in public
  • Drinking alcohol in public (or any liquid)
  • Conversation with an authoritative person with power
  • Speaking in front of an audience
  • Going to a party
  • Working while in visual contact with someone
  • Take notes in public, under supervision
  • Calling a stranger or someone you barely know
  • Calling a stranger or someone you barely know
  • Meeting strangers
  • Go to a public (street) toilet
  • Enter a room where everyone except you is already sitting
  • Be the center of attention
  • Speak at a meeting or meeting with colleagues
  • Public testing of your skills and abilities
  • Discussions and disagreement with a stranger
  • Looking into the eyes of a stranger
  • Oral presentation to a group with a speech
  • Meeting the opposite sex with the aim of starting a relationship
  • Returning previously purchased goods to the store
  • Invite friends to your home
  • Refusal of an offer (persistent)

Interpretation of results, test for social phobia:

  • 0-27 - Absence or slight shyness.
  • 28-32 - Average social form.
  • 33-40 - Expressed social form.
  • 41-48 - Severe social form.
  • 49-70 - Extremely severe form.
  • 71+ - You are an incorrigible social phobe.

The test to see how socially phobic you are will show an approximate assessment of the severity of the problem. Of course, more details can only be found out at a personal appointment, since all tests are indicative.

Contact and make an appointment Read about counseling and qualifications

Psychologist, hypnologist Natalya Korshunova ©


Most often, the first signs and symptoms of social phobia appear in a person quite early - between the ages of 11 and 13. After 20 years, this phobia practically does not arise on its own, but becomes a consequence of prolonged depression. Mostly women suffer from social phobia.

The following key factors influencing the development of the disease are identified:

  • heredity;
  • characteristics of temperament and nervous system;
  • social environment.

Psychologists have noticed that the risk of developing a social disorder increases if a relative in the family already suffers from this phobia. It is likely that social phobia is inherited. Or children copy the social anxiety of their parents by observing their behavior.

Interestingly, about 15% of people are born with a temperament characterized by behavioral inhibition. This is a feature of the functioning of the nervous system, in which a person is afraid of the outside world and is more immersed in himself. It is already observed in newborns. This feature increases the risk of developing social phobia.

Most often, social phobia develops against the background of self-doubt, which is characteristic of adolescents. It is during the period from 11 to 13 years that active interaction with society begins. Here are the most common causes of social disorder in adolescents.

  1. Excessive criticism or, conversely, guardianship from parents.
  2. The requirements for the child are too strict and difficult to meet.
  3. Constant conflicts in the family and school.
  4. Lack of necessary social approval.
  5. Rejection from peers, ridicule and bullying at school.
  6. Unsuccessful past experiences of interacting with people, for example, with the opposite sex.

In adults, social phobia can develop as a result of:

  • an inappropriate social environment that does not provide the necessary moral support;
  • prolonged depression;
  • experienced a stressful situation of strong intensity, for example, a disaster, a terrorist attack, etc.
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