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Social Anxiety - Beyond Shyness or Introversion

posted Dec 15, 2014, 8:09 PM by AndrewandSarah Witzel

Gradually, people are gaining awareness of postpartum anxiety as a distinct condition from postpartum depression. However, many people are still unaware that there are actually different kinds of anxiety disorders. Today I want to mention social anxiety specifically.


Social anxiety is different than shyness or introversion (needing alone time to recharge). Rather, affected people experience symptoms of anxiety such racing heartbeat, nausea, and psychological distress (ex. intense fear of embarassment or judgment) specific to  social circumstances. This differs from generalized anxiety disorder, where symptoms occur in many different circumstances.


While postpartum anxiety disorders in general are gaining more recognition, women with social anxiety may have their diagnosis missed because they function well in many other parts of their life. I was not able to find statistics on the prevalence of social anxiety postpartum. Further research in this area in regards to risk factors, prevalence, and treatment options is needed.


References and further reading:

http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/15686858

http://www.mayoclinic.org/diseases-conditions/social-anxiety-disorder/basics/definition/con-20032524
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