Social Anxiety Disorder in Women
Anxiety disorders are a common phenomenon among human beings. They are considered very disabling in nature. For instance, in the United States, it is noted that such disorder affects one out of four persons. It is believed that women are the most affected by this disorder in general. Some of the facets, which are believed to contribute to this form of high preference rate of the vulnerability of women towards this disorder, involve both societal and reproductive factors. Further research has indicated that the prevailing lack of information about fundamental elements of anxiety disorder has affected the pace, at which the research is conducted. It should be noted that many conferences have been undertaken to further the aspect of recognizing, preventing as well as treating anxiety disorder among women in general. In a more general term, this paper examines the issue of social anxiety disorder in women.
Social anxiety disorder is usually referred back to childhood or an early adolescent stage and the symptoms of this form of the disorder are known to persist later in the life of the affected individual. It should be noted that social anxiety disorder is sometimes referred to as social phobia (Pigott, 2003).
According to various surveys, which have been conducted for the last six years, it has been noted that social anxiety disorder, type IV is more common in women than in their counterparts, males. It is noted with great concern that social anxiety amongst women is brought about because of certain types of depressions, overdrinking of alcohol and other drug abuse, as well as poor quality of life and the element of over-utilization of healthcare resources at large. Some of the minor causes of this particular disorder are teenage pregnancy and conduct disorders at large (Davidson, 2000).
As much as there is little information about facets, which trigger social disorder among women, it has been noted that genetic factors are a critical aspect worth considering in relation to this condition, affecting women in general. There are also other forms of risks, which play a bigger role in portraying this form of the disorder. For instance, the familiarity of the victim’s environment may trigger the emergence of this disorder. In another conducted research, the findings indicated that there was a compelling fact about early life difficulties of women, which enhanced the capability of their succumbing to this social form of anxiety disorder (Stein, 1999). Such factors include childhood sexual abuse, as well as physical battering among teenage girls by their guardians. It is further noted that those women, who underwent sexual abuse, when they were young, developed a tendency of being vulnerable to these disorders, as well as other panic disorders. In a similar situation, it is indicated that those adults, who were assessed, displayed the tendency of being exposed to different forms of stress when they were young.
In order to expound on this topic, namely social disorder among women, it will be wise to provide an extensive research into the aforementioned facets, which cause the prevalence of the disorder in women as compared to men as a whole. The marital status as a factor increases the level of social anxiety disorder among women in the sense that it hinders the growth of various social skills required for making marriages. When women fail to acquire necessarily social skills required in an individual’s life, it then results into a subsequent fail in terms of educational background. Because of this factor, those women, who fear the aspect of facing a totally new social environment developed the lack of self-esteem, which translated to social phobia.
Concerning income as a facet, which enhances social anxiety disorder among women, it is noted with great concern that women, who earn the much lower amount of money develop symptoms of this particular disorder. Women, who managed household accounts with a lower level of income, had these symptoms as well. In essence, it will be true to indicate that women, who earned much lower amount of money, did so because of their resultant lower level of educational background.
It was further found out that women, who attained a lower academic prowess, often found a form of employment, which had many challenges in terms of social interaction. Furthermore, those women, who displayed social phobia, were completely financially dependent, so that their respective self-esteem was downtrodden. This financial dependence indicated that women were prone to various vulnerabilities in life, including prostitution and substance abuse. Those women, who had never opted for finding financial solace in this form of behavior, opted to seek funding from welfare or rather social assistance programs. This phenomenon reduced their confidence level.
When women were asked about their preferences in life, most of them indicated that they were far much comfortable with a well-to-do form of income. This meant that most women were quite sensitive about the aspect of finances. Both working and housewives indicated that most of their depression tendencies were closely associated with the lack of finances implicating the need for financial dependence among most women as a way of preventing this disorder at large.
With the information gathered from this research, there is a clear indication of the efforts, taken by women to avoid consequences of developing low self-esteem and the lack of social skills. Women indicated that they needed funds for various personal items, thus the lack of them meant that there was no way they were going to acquire these items as a whole in that matter. It is indicated that their respective vulnerability to social anxiety disorder increased tremendously. In an effort to conclude the facet of finances as a reason why women acquire social anxiety disorder depicts the fact that financial stability within the female fraternity is a major phenomenon required for reducing this condition.
It is further indicated that the prevalence rate of social anxiety disorder among women is related to a higher likelihood of them acquiring other disorders in general. A substantial amount of research evidence has suggested that social anxiety disorder among women is greatly linked to the risk of them being prone to other anxiety disorders. For instance, it is indicated that with the prevailing high substance abuse disorders among women, at many instances, it profusely translates into social phobia.
Another point worthwhile being noted concerning this facet is the fact that the intense rate of social disorder among women is also linked to the aspect of relentlessness and the consistency of the acquisition of similar disorders. To women, social phobia is linked to depression, as substance abuse is to men. The conducted survey indicated that those women, who no longer displayed symptoms of social anxiety disorder, were much likely to acquire other disorders at large.
The subsequent facet, which acts to foster the aspect of social anxiety disorder among women, lies with the fact that they lack the phenomenon of social support altogether. The four types of social support, which women needed and which were neglected, include substantial support, love and affection, positive social interaction and the need, which demands emotional and physical support altogether.
In a much broader term, substantial support is taken to mean a tangible form of support, which an individual needs while in an incapacitated scenario. It is an aspect, which requires someone to help or rather assist another person, when he or she is in dire need for support as a whole. For example, when a close relative of a friend is confined to bed and someone provides him or her with services they so much need, for example, preparing meals as well as helping with their daily household routines, love and affection refer to an element of extra care given to someone other than one-self. It ranges from hugs, kisses, holding hands in public, as well as making others feel appreciated and wanted altogether.
On the other hand, positive social interaction refers to a situation, whereby a person can find good time and relaxation moments when in the company of another person. Emotional support as a form of social interaction refers to the situation, whereby a person feels understandable. Thus, many problems they face are comprehended and evaluated and there is a solution provided by another person.
According to the survey conducted, women were more likely to acquire anxiety social disorders, whenever they felt that they did not receive the aforementioned social support. Unlike men, women felt very vulnerable, whenever they were stranded for where to relieve their respective worries altogether (Lewinsohn, Gotlib, Lewinsohn, Seeley & Allen, 1998).
It is further indicated that women with social phobia are actually in dire need of social forms of contact, which they fail to receive because of their respective fear of interacting with others. The end result of this phenomenon is total isolation. Women, who display symptoms of social anxiety disorders, are perceived to receive typically low forms of social support from their counterparts, men. When the lack of social support leads to social anxiety among women, it is said that the very onset of this establishment does not provide a platform, through which meaningful relationships can be created in any way.
In women, the aspect of disability and further life limitations is another facet, which enhances their vulnerability to the acquisition of social anxiety disorder altogether. As compared to their male counterparts, women, who display capabilities when performing daily routines while at home or at work, are considered to be at a much higher prevalent rate of acquiring anxiety disorders than their male counterparts (Lépine & Pelissolo,2000).
In this case, such incapability had both permanent and temporal forms, so that the inability to walk again and slight injuries posed a challenge to women in comparison with men, thus, it resulted in a high prevalent acquisition rate altogether. The fact was that there were more differences in disability days between women and men due to their informational health problems, or in other cases the abuse of alcohol or even drugs were more denounced to link women to the condition of social anxiety disorder.
It is evidently clear that women portray high levels of dissatisfaction with life and health as compared to their counterparts, thus it acts to foster the prevalence level of social anxiety disorder among them as compared to men. This is believed to be true, because those women, who have been already affected, tend to live a rather lower quality life, which is further portrayed by their negative views, which they possess about their personal health and life as well.
Although, this phenomenon is somehow linked to the fact that women consider financial stability as a major cause of the loss of positive perception about life, since the stability in terms of finances reflects the development of their respective ideas about life altogether.
In another survey, it was found out that unlike men, women, who were affected by social anxiety disorder, failed to seek medical assistance, which they so much needed. When a substantial sample of women were interviewed concerning the issue of seeking treatment, only 37% of them indicated, with a great level of confidentiality, that they had sought professional mode of treatment for disorders at large. The rest, which formed about 60%, indicated that they had never even at one time thought of seeking any form of medical treatment.
When a further extensive research was conducted about the reluctance depicted by women concerning seeking of medical assistance, it was found out that their respective failure to seek professional services or rather treatment was directly linked to the overall nature of underlying social phobia, symptoms of which were displayed by the patient. It was found out that because of excessive social fear among these women, they were embarrassed to admit and discuss their social symptoms with professional medical personnel altogether. While most women attributed these forms of embarrassment to shyness, it was found out that they perhaps had never comprehended the fact that they had a typical mental disorder (Olfson, Guardino&Struening, 2000).
In conclusion, it is wise to indicate that in many occasions social disorder among women has been displayed as an illness, which costs people opportunities. The research conducted by various medical institutions stipulates that this disorder is often experienced during childhood or early adolescence in girls with the onset stage commencing at 13 and it may sometimes last untill adulthood.
This research assignment has found out that social anxiety disorder in women is caused by a poor educational background, minimized employment openings for women, and the aspect of low level of household income. Thus, it results in the dependence on welfare or social support programs, minimized chances of ever getting married, as well as the aspect of social discrimination as a whole. It is also wise to stipulate that although there is the availability of medical assistance for treating this condition, most of these female patients prefer to remain adamant about the matter, and it is probably because of their high degree of shyness or fear in regard with that matter (Katzelnick & Greist,2001).
It is also worthwhile noting with great concern about the underlying statistics, which expounds on the prevalence rate of social anxiety disorder among women in general. At any given time, social phobia in women hits a 15.5% mark, while it is as low as 9.3% in their male counterparts. In women, the genetic factor increases the chances of being diagnosed with the disorder as compared with their male counterparts.
It should be noted that women, who have displayed social anxiety disorders, have a high suicidal tendency rate as compared to their male counterparts; thus, an extensive analysis of social anxiety tendencies in women depicts hereditary factors, morbidity, as well as a more chronic illness path.
The extended discussion on the barrier, which prevents women from assessing professional treatment, includes the fact that they are ever-burdened with the responsibility for tendering their children, unaffordable child care, the resultant cost of therapy, the absence of insurance health covers, as well as the disgrace, which is linked to a psychiatric diagnosis, as well as the unavailability of proficient health care services, as compared to men (Stein, 1999).