Social Anxiety Specialist

Choi Choi, MD

Psychiatrist & Psychotherapist located in Los Angeles, Torrance, CA

Do you get anxious when you have to interact with other people? Do you feel nervous even in a conversation with just one other person? These are symptoms of social anxiety. Fortunately, Dr. Choi offers holistic treatment to help you manage your fears and lead your best life from his private practice in Torrance, California. Call or schedule an appointment online today.

Social Anxiety Q & A

What is social anxiety?

Social anxiety is a specific manifestation of anxiety characterized by fears of interacting with other people and feelings of being judged that often lead to avoidance behaviors. Approximately 7% of the American population suffers from social anxiety to some extent.

If you have social anxiety disorder, your symptoms may range from a fear of public speaking to an acute fear of any social interaction. While it is possible to have social anxiety about a specific situation like public speaking or being in large groups of people, it’s much more common to feel anxious in general about social interactions. If you experience social anxiety, you may become irrationally anxious before and during social activities.

What are common triggers of social anxiety?

Some of the common triggers for social anxiety include:

  • Meeting new people or authority figures
  • Receiving criticism
  • Teasing
  • Being the center of attention
  • Social encounters, especially those involving strangers
  • Public speaking, even in small groups

What are symptoms of social anxiety?

In addition to intense feelings of anxiety and fear you may also experience physical symptoms including:

  • Blushing
  • Stuttering
  • Sweating
  • Dry mouth
  • Trembling
  • Nervous tics

How is social anxiety treated?

Dr. Choi offers customized care to help you ‘face your fears’ and manage your anxiety in social settings. Cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT) is often an integral part of a treatment plan because it teaches you to recognize your feelings and adapt your responses to those fears.

Treatment takes time and patience. Dr. Choi encourages you to be kind and compassionate to yourself throughout your treatment. You are facing your fears by even seeking treatment in the first place.

CBT typically involves talk therapy and ‘homework’ that includes practicing the skills and coping mechanisms that you talk about during your therapy sessions. Since you interact with people every day, you will have ample opportunity to practice.

Dr. Choi will also teach you meditation techniques that will help you to control your emotional and physical responses to social anxiety. Many patients have benefited from learning to be present in the moment instead of focusing on their fears of what might happen in the future or of being judged.

If you find yourself feeling anxious about social activities and making excuses to avoid them, call or book an appointment online to talk to Dr. Choi about your fears.