Social anxiety syndrome increases most during the pre-holiday period

As Christmas approaches, people experience a mixture of excitement and awe. But for many people suffering from social anxiety, the holiday season can be the most traumatic. The first clinical study on this issue was published by the National Institute for Health and the Quality of Care (NICE). Experts estimate that social anxiety syndrome affects up to 10% of the UK population. The syndrome manifests as persistent fear or anxiety about one or more social outcomes or situations and is disproportionate to the actual threat posed by the situation.

The holiday season is a unique combination of these situations. During this time, anxiety about finances, potential mistakes and embarrassment from alcohol increases, as well as more free time to spend with the family. People suffering from social anxiety can become obsessed with these questions to the point of exhaustion. The physical symptoms of this syndrome are reddening of the skin, increased sweating, and shortness of breath. And the most dangerous manifestation is the incapacitating effect, in which a person temporarily loses his ability to work.

Stressful states take possession of people’s thoughts several months before the alleged event, often afterwards the experience is repeatedly analyzed. For example, when it comes to a Christmas party, a person may be afraid to go there, experiencing depression and insecurity, further lowering their self-esteem. Moreover, a person can suffer from social anxiety, even while at home.

The Internet forum for people suffering from social anxiety syndrome numbers 15,000 people, and the number of participants is growing every year. Experts advise using the pre-New Year period and Christmas to deal with the problem and urge everyone to leave the house more often and communicate. This may well be the first step towards gaining control over worries and fears.

event_note April 12, 2021

account_box Winona Tse MD

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