What is Social Anxiety Disorder (SAD)?
Social anxiety disorder or SAD is also known as social phobia. It is a common psychiatric condition that is characterized by a fear of social interaction with other people.
According to a recent survey, SAD is ranked as the 3rd most prevalent and debilitating psychiatric disorder worldwide.
It has a lifetime prevalence of 2 to 5% in adults. Current U.S. statistics revealed that about 7% of the entire population may be affected by social anxiety disorder at any time with a lifetime risk of around 13%.
The Two Major Types of Social Anxiety Disorder
- Generalized SAD
Generalized SAD is a condition that is more disabling for the affected patients. The clinical presentation is generalized fear of social interactions and situations that require mingling with other people.
- Non-Generalized SAD
Non-Generalized SAD is a type of social phobia that is characterized by fear of public speaking and performing in front of an audience. Patients with this condition are still capable of having social interactions.
Common Situations that Trigger Social Anxiety Disorder
Individuals who are self-conscious and highly-sensitive are at high-risk for Social Anxiety Disorder. The most common scenarios that trigger social phobia include;
- Interacting with other persons of the same age
- Attending social events like parties and group conventions
- Entering a room filled with people like conference room, restaurants and cafes
- Having to talk to authorities like group leaders, bosses and other influential people
- Attending one-on-one or panel interviews
- Being in a public place
The Relevance of Chat Lines in the Treatment of Patients with SAD
Chat lines are designed for social interaction between adult singles across all sexual preferences and gender orientations. Their main features are the instant connection and direct communication between callers.
They also support private conversations between two parties who want to engage in any form of social interaction such as phone dating, friendly chats, flirting and even adult entertainment.
Apparently, chat lines offer the most convenient means to talk to someone (a stranger) at any given time of the day. And this makes them highly beneficial for patients with social phobia knowing that they have the means to conquer their condition without being watched, judged or laughed at.
All it takes is their willingness to overcome their condition. They can simply call the chat lines for therapeutic reasons such as to overcome whatever uncertainties they might have, to build up their confidence and to start developing their ability to socialize.
What Patients with SAD Can Expect from Chat Lines
- Chat Lines promote social interaction that is free from judgments
There are several reasons that make phone chat lines beneficial to its callers. The element of anonymity is perhaps one of the most relevant followed by top privacy and security.
Callers can stay anonymous while engaging in conversations and their call won’t leave any trace. Moreover, the fun associated with the chat lines comes from the callers’ freedom to express their identity.
They can be casual, funny or serious. Nobody would ever judge them for their looks and how they present themselves.
- Chat lines can offer patients with SAD a sense of safety and security
Any psychiatric disorder can benefit from healthy communication, social interaction, and counseling. And sometimes, it’s easier to open up to strangers about your self because there is no judgment.
Chat lines can serve this purpose and help patients with SAD overcome their fears. The first call may be nerve-wracking for them and may put them on the edge.
However, knowing that they are actually anonymous and the phone call will remain undetected can help them overcome any social stigmas they might have. They are even free to mess up with their first conversation or make some mistakes and nobody would ever find out.
- A wide-rage of topics can be explored within the chat lines
There is no topic that is off the table with social chat lines. The fact that you can talk about anything under the sun makes them highly universal. There are no requirements in terms of looks, abilities, popularity and confidence level.
Callers are free to express themselves and to engage in various forms of private conversations. Those who feel extremely shy can skip the awkwardness that comes from traditional self-introduction.
- Chatting with strangers is a good form of therapy
Therapists usually teach their patients suffering from social phobia various relaxation techniques that can help them manage their social interactions better. Breathing exercises, muscle tension release and mind conditioning had all been proven to be helpful.
However, the most effective way to treat social anxiety is to gradually confront the condition while incorporating these relaxation techniques. Studies had proven that anxiety levels can be reduced over time with constant practice and willingness to act against the source of fears and uncertainties.
Chatting with strangers over the chat lines can be used as a therapy. Patients can call anytime or whenever they’re ready to battle against their social phobia.
They can casually chat with strangers and talk about anything that interests them such as their hobbies, passion and dreams. Chatting with real people can help them cultivate their confidence, develop their ability to socialize and gradually reduce their anxiety.
With constant practice, they would learn how to overcome their condition and find the means to have a healthy social life.
- Chat lines offer the possibility of finding new friendships
We live in a society wherein we can be surrounded by a crowd yet we still feel lonely and alone. Sometimes, it’s hard to open up even to the most familiar people around us when things get rough.
However, being heard is an essential part of living in this world that’s why it’s important to develop new friendships and acquaintances every now and then.
Sadly, patients suffering from social phobia like SAD may potentially miss the chance to meet people who can make a difference in their lives due to their condition.
However, the chat lines provide opportunities for them to have social interaction via phone defying the conventional means of having to approach people face-to-face.
Chat lines can, therefore, give them a good head start towards making new friends in a more comfortable set-up. Newfound friendships can help them in overcoming their social anxiety.
- Chat Lines as Part of Psychotherapy Program for Patients with Social Phobia
Patients who are suffering from social phobia, anxiety, and depression go through a psychotherapy program. Psychotherapy refers to a multi-disciplinary treatment program than can help in treating mental health conditions, emotional challenges and various forms of psychiatric disorders.
Psychotherapy is sometimes referred to as “talking treatment” according to an article published in Medical News Today (medically-reviewed by Timothy J. Legg, Ph.D., CRNP).
The main objective of psychotherapy is to enable patients to understand their feelings and determine the factors that influence their behavior. What makes them feel more positive, anxious or depressed?
This can help them cope with the most challenging situations like social interaction in a more adaptive way. Communication serves as the “bread and butter” of the treatment.
How “Talking Therapy” Works
Psychotherapy usually lasts for only a few sessions. However, patients with more serious cases undergo treatment on a long-term basis that could last for a few months to several years. The duration of psychotherapy usually lasts for an hour and is scheduled once a week.
Therapists follow a structured process that aims to gradually help the patient confront his/her fears and anxieties. The sessions may be one-on-one, by pairs or by groups and activities include alternative forms of communication such as narrative story, drama, story-telling and music.
Chat Lines as a Form of Psychotherapy
Since psychotherapy or “talking therapy” lasts for only an hour and are based on schedule, therapists recommend other means for patients to confront their anxieties on their own or with the help of their family and friends.
One example is by calling the chat lines and engaging in positive conversations. This form of alternative “talking therapy” can help patients deal with their social anxiety without exposing themselves in the process.
It also enables them to gradually come out of their shell so they can eventually face the real world.
Calling the chat lines as a form of psychotherapy is beneficial for patients because it allows them to have someone they can talk to. It creates a healthier means of approaching difficult problems so they can slowly and actively move towards an effective solution.
Patients can also gain a deeper understanding of their own personalities, what they want in life, their goals and their values. And in the process, they can develop skills to improve their relationships.
Psychotherapy is not only effective in helping patients who are suffering from social anxiety disorder but also those who have other forms of phobias and psychiatric conditions.
But in order for it to become truly effective, the patient must actively participate in the program and continue practicing in between sessions. In this case, it can be done by calling the chat lines and by socially-interacting with other people through positive conversations.
Chat lines are more than just dating platforms and source of adult entertainment. They can actually be beneficial to individuals suffering from social anxiety disorder (SAD). Calling the chat lines can also be seen as an alternative form of psychotherapy or “talking therapy”.
The reason is that it allows patients with social phobias to gradually confront their fears and actively move on towards effective solutions. This makes chat lines highly relevant not just for phone dating but also in helping some individuals overcome any challenges and health conditions they might have.