• Mental and behavioural disorders account for 19% of the global burden of disease - WHO
    • It is estimated that nearly 450 million people suffer from a mental or behavioural disorder in the world - WHO
    • Nearly 10% of total population suffers from these disorders - WHO
    • Mental health is a state of well-being in which an individual realizes his or her own abilities, can cope with the normal stresses of life, can work productively and is able to make a contribution to his or her community.
    • Nearly 1% of the Indian population suffer from serious mental & behavioural disorders and 10% from moderate disorders, requiring psychiatric help.
    • By 2020 mental depression will be largest cause of disabilty worldwide and by 2025 it may overtake heart diseases as the biggest health concern - WHO
    • About half of mental disorders begin before the age of 14 - WHO
    • Around 20% of the world's children and adolescents are estimated to have mental disorders or problems - WHO

Social Phobia

Social anxiety, or social phobia, is more than just shyness. It is intense fear of certain social situations and fear of being inspected, judged, or embarrassed in public. One tends to avoid such situations that are unfamiliar or in which one feels one will be watched or evaluated by others WHAT CAUSES SOCIAL PHOBIA? Social Phobia is caused by a combination of factors:-

  • Person’s Genes
  • Learned Behaviour
  • Developmental factors
  • Previous experiences
  • Psychological factors
  • Biochemical Imbalance

Emotional Symptoms (intense worry, extreme fear of being watched and judged). Physical Symptoms (red face, difficulty in breathing, shaking, sweating). Behavioural Symptoms (avoiding social situations, hiding)

Meeting new people, Public speaking, Eating or drinking in public, Attending parties, meetings, Making phone calls.

Social phobia usually develops in adolescence and it is uncommon for this to develop after the age of 25. Rather with early treatment, the possibility of excellent recovery and subsequently patient leading a normal life is very high. The treatment options for social phobia include:

  • Medicine
  • Cognitive behaviour therapy
  • Social skills training
  • Assertiveness training
  • Counselling and Psychosocial management.
  • Family education, support and intervention.

Factors that contribute to the development of Social Anxiety may include a biological and psychological vulnerability to being anxious about social evaluation, Exposure to stressful social or performance situations,

In order to reduce self-focus, pay attention to what is happening around you, Look at other people and the surroundings. Really listen to what is being said (not to your own negative thoughts). Don't take all the responsibility for keeping conversations going—silence is okay, other people will contribute. By being encouraging and supportive. Challenge negative thoughts. By helping the patient to face his/her fears. By helping the patient find appropriate & effective treatment, encourage him/her to continue taking medications and carrying on regular follow up visits as advised. Educate yourself as much as possible about the illness, its treatment and how best to deal with it.