Social anxiety can interfere with normal life, but fortunately several treatment options are available. Seeking help for social anxiety can seem like a daunting task, and often sufferers of this disorder put off seeing the doctor due to fear or shame. However, one’s quality of life can be greatly improved with treatment, and some patients see positive changes within a few months of getting help.
One treatment option that often proves successful is one-on-one counseling. Cognitive Behavioral Therapy, better known as CBT, is a common and effective method for treating social anxiety. Confronting the fear of social interactions and working on ways to cope with and move beyond social anxiety can offer a direct path to recovery. Those with social anxiety can work with a counselor or therapist to pinpoint triggers and deal with recurring issues directly. Sometimes several sessions with a therapist are necessary for CBT to be effective. Over time, new ways of seeing situations that previously caused anxiety can help a patient find his or her way back to wellness.
Another treatment option for social anxiety is medication. Often social anxiety and depression go hand-in-hand, and some forms of anti-depressant medications have proven effective in treating social anxiety. As-needed medications can also be used to deal with sudden onset anxiety symptoms, such as panic attacks. Taking medication as prescribed and regularly checking in with a physician is recommended. Dosage or frequency of medication may need to be adjusted as treatment progresses, so it is always best to keep a physician informed.
Talk therapy and medication are frequently combined to help a person suffering with social anxiety gain control of their symptoms and get back on track. This combination can give a patient the quickest results. Regular counseling sessions can assist in resetting emotional responses and habits related to social anxiety, and medication can alter neural pathways on a physiological level. When experienced together, these two treatment options can clear a quick path to success.
While there is no quick fix for social anxiety, the treatments available can be very effective. There is no shame in getting help. Social anxiety is no different from a physical illness that requires treatment and symptom maintenance. If a person continues their treatment under the supervision of a medical professional, it is likely he or she will make a full recovery from social anxiety and return to a full and vibrant life.