Social anxiety disorder is a psychological disorder which is characterized by the fear of those situations which involve interaction with others. The victims feel uncomfortable because of the feeling that they are being judged, watched and noticed by others. This disorder is sometimes mistaken with shyness or low self-esteem.
There are several causes of social anxiety disorder which can be identified, however, there is not always possible to find out the cause in many cases.
Causes of Social Anxiety Disorder
One of the common causes of social anxiety is a traumatic past social experience. Some childhood experiences like being picked on or being made fun of, can have long-lasting impact and may not be easily forgotten. However, a bad experience during adulthood can also lead to social anxiety. According to some researchers, the social anxiety resulting from adult social traumatic experience can be easily dealt with because the person only needs to regain self-confidence. However, the assumption varies from person to person.
The other common cause of social anxiety disorder is thought to be the learned behavior. E.g. if the parents fear social situations, it is likely that the child would also be a victim of social anxiety because as children, most of our behavior is shaped by what we learn from others around us. However, there are also a lot of chances that the children who have parents with outgoing personalities, may also develop social anxiety as a result. This is because of the fear that those they would not be able to live up to those levels of social interactions which have been set by their parents and hence they become socially afraid and passive.
Sometimes, the social anxiety can be a result of inaccurate information or improper attitude from others. E.g. if a girl is a tomboy as a child, she might face pressure from her parents and friends etc to act like a girl and she might be discourages from all such acts which are socially associated with boys, and hence she may develop a fear to face the social gatherings assuming that she is not a normal social girl. This feeling can have long-lasting impact as she grows up. E.g. she may face a problem in her love relationship because she may feel inferior because of her ‘not lady like’ attitude and may feel that no body would be interested to develop relationships with such a tomboy type girl. She would always feel as if she is being judges for her abnormal personality which does not fit in the society.
Today, researchers have also started believing that social anxiety is something capable of being inherited genetically. The assumption is based on the observation that the identical twins are seen to develop same social anxiety conditions, whereas, the fraternal twins do not usually show such alike behavior. However, the research is still going on and nothing can be said with certainty.
Above mentioned causes are the most commonly found causes of social anxiety disorder, however, the causes may differ from one person to the other and researchers believe that therapy is an effective way to diagnose the underlying cause. Once the cause has been identified, it becomes easier to overcome the social anxiety disorder.