Social phobia is defined by the revised third edition of Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders (DSM-III-R; American Psychiatric Association, 1987) as excessive, irrational fear of situations in which the person expects to be scrutinized by others and somehow humiliated or embarrassed. Social phobic situations include conversing, eating, drinking, or writing while being observed, using public restrooms; and public speaking. Despite indications in DSM-III (American Psychiatric Association, 1980) that social phobia is believed to be unlikely to represent severe impairment, both research and clinical experience have indicated that it may have a significant adverse impact on social and occupational functioning. The extent of role impairment may depend on the severity and generalization of fear and avoidance and on the presence of secondary diagnoses such as substance abuse or depression.
KeywordsAnxiety Disorder Social Phobia Cognitive Restructuring Homework Assignment Automatic Thought
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