Interesting social anxiety disorder facts

Interesting facts about social anxiety disorder

Social anxiety facts - infographic

Social anxiety facts – infographic

Interesting social anxiety disorder facts are difficult to find these days. Many websites copy and paste information from other websites without checking its sources. And because little is known about social anxiety, I have collected some interesting social anxiety disorder facts for you. Of course all the interesting social anxiety disorder facts come from scientific articles.
Individuals with social phobia live with it for years or even decades before they seek help. Social phobia is considered a chronic mental disorder. Social anxiety disorder (social phobia) is the most common anxiety disorder: 6.65% of adults had social anxiety disorder at least once in their lives. Social phobia is a serious and underestimated problem in today’s society. Here are some interesting social anxiety disorder facts.

But first a short introduction to what social anxiety disorder (SAD) is. A person with SAD is afraid that he looks bad, or will make a mistake, be embarrassed or humiliated in front of others. This fear can get so huge that it can result in a panic attack. Most people with SAD have poor social skills. Having poor social skills can make people with SAD even more afraid in social situations. What happens next is that people with SAD will stay away from social situations. Or they will worry a lot just days before the event takes place.
 
 

At Barends Psychology Practice we offer (online) counseling for social anxiety / social phobia. Contact us to schedule a first, free of charge, online session. (Depending on your health insurance, sometimes treatment can be reimbursed)

 
 

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Interesting social anxiety disorder facts – general information.

  • Individuals with social phobia live with their disorder for years or even decades before they seek help.
  • The social phobics without any other mental disorder are rarely in touch with the professional health care system.
  • Social anxiety disorder is rarely diagnosed by professionals, such as: psychiatrists, psychologists and general practitioners.
  • Approximately 6.65% of total population has social phobia/social anxiety disorder once in their lives.

 

  • Different studies find that the age of onset is between 12 and 16.6.
  • Getting social anxiety disorder after the age of 25 is rare.
  • Social phobics have a lower quality of life compared to the normal population.
  • 22.3% of social phobics get financial disability or welfare, compared to 10.6% of normal population.

 

  • Social anxiety disorder negatively affects family life, social functioning, education, work and close relationships.
  • Social phobics have a higher chance of being unemployed, leave school at an early age, or engage in jobs below their educational level.
  • People with social phobia tend to call in sick for work more often than people without a mental disorder.
  • Risk of suicidality is higher in people with social anxiety disorder.

 
 

Interesting social anxiety disorder facts – men vs. women.

  • More women than men have been affected by social anxiety disorder: between 1.5 and 2.2 times more.
  • More men than women seek help for social phobia, probably because of gender roles and social expectations.

 
 

Interesting social anxiety disorder facts – comorbidity (associations with other mental disorders).

  • In the past 12 months around 88% of people with social anxiety disorder had at least one other mental disorder.
  • Different studies show that between 69% and 92% of adults with social phobia suffer at least one other mental disorder in their lifetime.
  • Substance use disorders, depression and other anxiety disorders are the most common other disorders people with social anxiety disorder have.

 

  • 25.6% of people with social phobia also had panic disorder.
  • 29.5% of people with social anxiety disorder also had a specific phobia.
  • 71.2% of social phobics also had another anxiety disorder.
  • 50.5% of social phobics also had a major depressive disorder.

 
 

Interesting social anxiety disorder facts – How common is it in the United States?

  • 12.1% of American adults get social anxiety disorder at least once in their lives.
  • 13.6% of American adults aged 18-29 get social phobia at least once in their lives.
  • 14.3% of American adults aged 30-44 get social anxiety disorder at least once in their lives.

 

  • 12.4% of American adults between 45-59 get social phobia at least once in their lives.
  • 6.6% of American adults aged 60+ get social anxiety disorder at least once in their lives.

 
 

Interesting social anxiety disorder facts – How common is it in Europe?

  • 3.9% of Belgian adults get social anxiety disorder at least once in their lives.
  • 13.7% of Norwegian adults get social anxiety disorder at least once in their lives.
  • 7.8% of Dutch adults get social phobia at least once in their lives.
  • 6.0% of French adults get social anxiety disorder at least once in their lives.

 

  • 0.6% of Spanish adults had social phobia in the past 12 months.
  • 7.9% of Norwegian adults had social phobia in the past 12 months.
  • Only 2.0% of European* adults had social anxiety disorder in the past 12 months.

 
 

Literature.

The data presented on this page can be found in the following articles:

Kessler et al., 2005.

Fehm et al. (2005).

Fehm et al. (2007).
 
 

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