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How Do I Get the Help I Need for Social Anxiety?

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From a teen in the U.S.: This was already difficult enough to sign up on here to ask this, so, I apologize for any errors or confusion here.

I had a blood test done on me and it confirmed I had anxietysocial anxiety. It made sense to me why when I got really scared I couldn’t breathe or think, and why I try to avoid people until it is impossible. I told my parents, and so did the doctor who told me I had social anxiety, that medicine is recommended.

Social anxiety is keeping me from making friends and feeling good about myself, and I have even done self harm because of it. My parents think this is just “normal worrying” and sometimes I believe them.

I really think I need medicine, but how do I get my parents to understand that this isn’t normal and to support me/give me medicine if it truly is necessary?

How Do I Get the Help I Need for Social Anxiety?

Answered by on -


Although I was able to find some research about a blood test for anxiety that involves checking for high levels of acetylcholinesterase (AChE), I didn’t know it was available in the U.S. I’m curious about what test was done and how it was able to pinpoint the type of anxiety disorder. I wish you could provide that information.

Generally, blood tests are used to check whether there is an underlying medical condition that is causing the symptoms of anxiety. Thyroid problems, diabetes, heart disease and irritable bowel syndrome are among the medical issues that can present like anxiety. If you are medically okay, the doctor might then refer you on to psychiatrist or therapist.

If you saw a psychiatrist who diagnosed social anxiety, then he or she might have suggested medicine to reduce the symptoms. Your letter suggests your parents didn’t agree.

However, that doesn’t mean you are stuck with social anxiety. Life is full of stresses. Although medicine might reduce your anxiety somewhat, no medicine will completely solve it. You need to learn ways to take care of yourself in social situations so you can make friends, do well in school and in jobs, and generally manage the stresses that come with being around other people.

You might be more successful in talking with your parents if you started with a request for some therapy to help you learn more ways to handle stress. If the therapist agrees that medicine would help your treatment, the therapist will help you talk with your folks about it and will make an appropriate referral.

I wish you well.
Dr. Marie

How Do I Get the Help I Need for Social Anxiety?

Therapists live, online right now, from BetterHelp:

Dr. Marie Hartwell-Walker

Dr. Marie is licensed as both a psychologist and marriage and family counselor. She specializes in couples and family therapy and parent education. Follow her on Facebook or Twitter.

APA Reference
Hartwell-Walker, D. (2018). How Do I Get the Help I Need for Social Anxiety?. Psych Central. Retrieved on December 1, 2020, from
Scientifically Reviewed
Last updated: 8 May 2018 (Originally: 27 Jul 2016)
Last reviewed: By a member of our scientific advisory board on 8 May 2018
Published on Psych All rights reserved.