Social Phobia

Social phobia, also known as social anxiety disorder, is a mental health condition characterized by a substantial amount of fear in one or more social situations. It is incredibly common and perfectly normal to feel nervous when in certain social situations, such as giving a presentation or going on a first date. However, in order to qualify as social anxiety disorder, the fear of social situations impairs your ability function in at least some aspects of your daily life. Individuals suffering from social phobia are typically extremely worried about being evaluated or scrutinized by other people. Social anxiety disorder is more common in women than in men.  Symptoms may include, among other things, panic attacks, rapid heartbeat, sweating, muscle tension, blushing, stomach discomfort, lightheadedness, fear of situations in which you may be judged, excessive worrying about embarrassing yourself, or the fear of talking to strangers. If you think you may be dealing with a social phobia, a qualified professional therapist can help you identify the cause and help you develop ways to cope. Reach out to one of TherapyDen’s social phobia experts today.

Meet the specialists

The defining feature of social anxiety, also called social phobia, is intense anxiety or fear of being judged, negatively evaluated, or rejected in a social or performance situation. Our approach to treatment utilizes CBT with graded exposure therapy techniques while also incorporating mindfulness practices (such as guided imagery and progressive muscle relaxation) to help individuals cope with triggering situations and thoughts.

— Shannon Renzulli, Psychotherapist in Stamford, CT

Social anxiety is a disorder that causes intense anxiety or nervousness when faced with social situations. If this sounds like you, you can live the life you want by learning how to control your social anxiety. I use CBT Techniques, situational exposure, and personal coaching to help clients live the life they want. Start thinking about all the places you would go and things you would do if social phobia was not part of your life. We will get you to that ideal place, together.

— Natasha Fortune, Counselor in Long Island City, NY

I use cognitive behavioral therapy combined with exposure therapy to treat clients who struggle with social anxiety. The primary goal of therapy is to help the client identify core beliefs and values which sustains his or her experiences with social phobia. Afterwards the client is then assisted in the adoption of healthier and reality based core beliefs which reinforce feelings and attitudes of assertiveness and confidence in social situations.

— Ugo Uche, Counselor in Tucson, AZ

I completed a 9-month internship at St. Louis Behavioral Medicine Institute, where I worked in their Intensive Outpatient Program for OCD and Anxiety-Related Disorders. In this role I completed training in Cognitive Behavioral Therapy and Exposure and Response Prevention, which is a powerful-evidence-based therapy for OCD, anxiety, and more.

— Noelle Chandler, Mental Health Counselor in Creve Coeur, MO

Another area of expertise for me is helping people overcome social anxiety, shyness, and gaining assertiveness and social/interpersonal confidence and skills.

— Carrie Dodrill, Psychologist in Houston, TX

Watch videos where I talk about how to overcome all kinds of social anxiety:

— Thomas Smithyman - Online Social Anxiety Psychologist, Clinical Psychologist in New York, NY

Extensive reading in this area, and treatment for social anxiety has been my primary specialization throughout my years of practice.

— Moira Ryan, Counselor in Portland, OR