SOCIAL ANXIETY DISORDER:

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SOCIAL ANXIETY DISORDER:

– social anxiety is the persistent fear of social situations & the interaction with other people that can automatically bring on feelings of self-consciousness, judgment, evaluation, & inferiority.
– SA leads an individual to avoid social activity-places & work situations.
– SA results in impairment of social relationships and work performance
– it is thought that maladaptive interpersonal beliefs play a causal role in SAD (Boden et al., 2012)
– also thought to stem from clients using internal information to infer how others are viewing them [see NATs]

AETIOLOGY
– lifetime prevalence of 13.3% making it the third most frequent mental health disorder (Kessler et al., 1994)
– onset typically in the mid-teens
– more likely to affect females
– attributed to life stressors
– up o 16% of patients who meet criteria for SAD also have alcohol abuse problems (Bruce & Saeed, 1999)

PSYCHOMETRIC TESTS:
– Liebowitz Social Anxiety Scale
– Brief Social Phobia Scale
– Social Phobia & Anxiety Inventory

CBT
– provide clients with cognitive & behavioural strategies to manage, challenge, and reduce social anxiety symptoms
Goals:
– minimise self-consciousness
– halt safety behaviours
– avoid ruminations
– reduce anxiety
– increase coping skills
[ACKNOWLEDGE THA CBT/TREATMENT IS DIFFICULT – IN PARTICULAR IN VIVO EXPOSURE]

TREATMENT:
– psychoeducation
– cognitive restructuring (identifying NATs, thought challenge – deal with information-facts) [seen as critical to treatment of SA]
– shifting attentional focus
– exposure
– homework (visualisation)
– social skills (eye contact, appearing confident)
– behavioural interventions (relaxation, PMR, breathing, diaphragmatic breathing, mindfulness
– imaginal exposure
– problem-solving

GRADED EXPOSURE:
– according to learning theory, the SA patients think their actions enable them to avoid “the punishment and embarrassment” of the feared situation.
– graded exposure is gradual exposure to the anxiety-provoking situation
– this enables the natural conditioning process (habituation and extinction) to occur
– USE RELAXATION/CALMING EXERCISES AS PART OF THE EXPOSURE EX. [Patients can avoid by distracting themselves/or can REFUSE]

Resources:
Www.minddisorders.com/Del-Fi/Exposure-treatment.html#ixzz29VcLajoo
Www. Cci.health.wa.gov.au/
Www.psychologytools.org/
http://www.actmindfully.com

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