Are you chatty with close family and friends but clam up in front of outsiders? Do office presentations and social gatherings make your palms sweaty? An invitation to a party makes you break out and you begin thinking of plausible excuses for not attending it? If this is you, then you may be suffering from social anxiety.
Well, you are not alone. Almost 36% of people report experiencing symptoms for 10 years before seeking help. Those suffering from this phobia feel they will be judged negatively by other people in social situations- be it at a social occasion or a performance on stage or even a meeting or presentation.
Social anxiety is of two types. They are:
- Specific social anxiety deals with specific situations. Like some people are anxious only when they are facing an oral exam, a job interview, or presenting in front of a large group.
- Generalized social anxiety is when a person is anxious in almost every social situation that he or she encounters like going out with friends, a party, or a family gathering, etc.
Some of the situations a person could feel socially anxious include:
- When the focus is on them in a situation
- Being the centre of attention
- Performance pressure
- In romantic situations, for example, on dates
- With total strangers
Adding to the complexity is the alternate life we lead on social media. This has given rise to social media anxiety. It is a kind of anxiety that people feel when they see others posting happy pictures and updates on social media which is often starkly contrasted with their own lives.
Combating social anxiety
There are a lot of ways to combat all types of social anxiety using cognitive and behavioural psychotherapy.
Another way with which we can treat this is through Homeopathy. It is a safe, gentle, and natural system of medicine that works on the body to give relief from the symptoms. It is safe to use, even for pets and kids, and doesn’t have any side effects.
Classical homeopathy offers remedies according to the constitution of the person’s mental and physical emotional symptoms.
Here are some remedies, though, that are popularly used to treat social anxiety:
- Ambra Grisea is made using the secretion of a whale. It is an excellent medicine for treating the fear of facing people. The symptoms for this include fear of people, excessive consciousness in the presence of others, and a desire to be alone.
- Lycopodium is an excellent homeopathic medicine for people with poor or low self-esteem. People needing this medicine show lack of confidence while talking to strangers, in public or alone. Children may not want to play with kids their age and would rather be with their parents. If they must talk, they might stammer or be confused in thinking.
- Silicea which is one of the leading homeopathic remedies for performance anxiety is good for people who are afraid of speaking in public. They are nervous and anxious about speaking in front of a group and anticipate failure when they do so. They avoid such situations as they are not able to express themselves publicly.
- Aconite is a great remedy for treating social anxiety that includes panic attacks. These people are afraid of crowded places or groups and are extremely restless and nervous. They get palpitations in social situations.
- Argenticum nitricum and Gelsemium are remedies used to treat cases of anticipatory anxiety which begins even before the actual event takes place. A lot of people also suffer from diarrhea along with anxiety.
Other popular remedies include but not limited to Calc Carb, Kali Ars, Kali Phos, Arsenic, etc.
Anxiety should be diagnosed and treated by qualified medical professionals and use of homeopathic medicines should be done under the guidance of a qualified homeopath. Self-medication can bring more harm than good.
Geeta Hansaria is a homeopath with a passion for writing, especially food poems, binges on DIY kid crafts and cooks up yummy ‘thalis’ for her vast Instagram fan following.