TAKE THE SOCIAL ANXIETY TEST:
1. Do you feel intense anxiety when meeting new people, asking for what you want from others (asking for directions, a raise, a date, etc.), standing in a crowd, or speaking in public?
2. Are you fine with strangers, brief or superficial encounters, but grow uncomfortable as acquaintances spend more time with you and get to know you more? Do you worry people will find out something about you and judge you?
3. Do you avoid these and other social situations?
4. Do you think about how people judge you? Do you work harder than others to please people or avoid confrontation to ensure a positive impression?
5. Does your anxiety or avoidance prevent you from making friends, progressing in your career, forming romantic relationships, or speaking in public?
If you answered yes to any of these questions, you have social anxiety, a condition shared by millions of Americans.
WHAT IS THE TREATMENT FOR SOCIAL ANXIETY?
The good news is that social anxiety is very treatable, and you might not need medication at all. Hundreds of studies support that the most effective treatment for social anxiety is a special type of behavior therapy, known as "Gradual Exposure Therapy." Gradual exposure enables sufferers to very gradually overcome their fears and avoidant behavior at a pace THEY choose and are comfortable with, so they are never overwhelmed. Results are achieved in a matter of months not years. Gradual exposure is more effective than medication or any other kind of therapy. Medication provides only temporary or partial relief and has side effects; symptoms just come back when you end the medication. Gradual exposure provides permanent relief, essentially eliminating excessive social anxiety forever and restoring a normal life in which clients are more relaxed and confident in social situations. Most of my clients benefit from exposure therapy with no medication at all. Many people's lives are transformed, getting the jobs and relationships they deserve but never thought possible until completing treatment.
HOW DO I FIND A THERAPIST TO TREAT MY SOCIAL ANXIETY?
I practice in Manhattan (34th St. & 5th near the Empire State Building and Macy's) and New Jersey (15 minutess from the GWB), and would be happy to arrange an appointment for you or I can offer you a free phone consultation at 212-726-2390. You an also book your appointment online instantly yourself. If you live outside of the New York metropolitan area, you can find a local therapist by contacting the Association for Cognitive Behavior Therapies (www.abct.org) or the OCD Foundation (www.ocfoundation.org). Even though the latter is for OCD, the same people are equally competent to treat social anxiety. Ask them for a social anxiety (or social phobia) specialist in your area. If they don't have someone in your area, ask them if they know of a similar organization in your region that could make a referral to you. Such organizations would have words such as "Anxiety," "Fear," "Cognitive Therapy," or "Behavior Therapy" in their titles. Once they give you the names, you have to call and interview the therapists by phone.
IF YOU'RE CONSIDERING ANOTHER THERAPIST, THERE ARE 2 TEST QUESTIONS YOU MUST ASK:
(1) Is gradual Exposure Therapy the main technique they use? If they don't, forget about using them. They might say they "talk" about it and help clients "see things more rationally," which is helpful, but that is no substitute for gradual exposure. And:
(2) How many people have they SUCCESSFULLY treated FOR social anxiety? They should have treated at least several dozen people, the people should not longer have severe social anxiety or should not be taking medication any more. They should NOT say they just helped people "live with" their social anxiety better.
BUT THE FIRST STEP IS TO EMAIL YOUR QUESTIONS TO DR. BRODSKY NOW or call 212-726-2390 and get a free, prompt answer within 24 hours! Dr. Brodsky's 2 offices are convenient to the entire New York Metropolitan area, including midtown Manhattan (on 34th St., close to every subway, bus, and train line), Long Island, Westchester, Rockland, and New Jersey. Or MAKE AN APPOINTMENT INSTANTLY ONLINE yourself.