Social phobias

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Social phobias

Social phobias are a very interesting phenomenon in children. They can come from different people, different situations, and different environmental exposures. It's important to remember that when it comes to all types of anxiety, our brain has the ability to get used to them. Social phobias aren't any different. If the fear that your child has is related to going into a room full of strangers, the best thing you can do is gradually expose him to that room full of strangers. If it just for 10 seconds, that's great. If it's for 15, even better. Gradually, over the course of time, your child will begin to acclimate to that experience. The reason why most children fail at this is because they jump into the pool very quickly, instead of very gradually. If you take them from a room with one person in it, and then a room with 50 people in it, and you have them stay in that room for two hours, that is going to be overwhelming for them. Ideally, you have them go into the room with one person, then two, then three, and so on.

Watch Preetpal Sandhu, MD's video on Social phobias...


Expert Bio

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Preetpal Sandhu, MD

Child & Adolescent Psychiatrist

Dr. Sandhu is a UCLA-trained, Board Certified Psychiatrist who has practiced Psychiatry at UCLA and in Beverly Hills for several years. He did his undergraduate work at UCLA where he was named to Phi Beta Kappa. He then completed medical school at the University of Southern California, Keck School of Medicine and was named a Dean's scholar. He also received a master’s degree in Business Administration from University of Southern California, Marshall School of Business where he was named to the Dean's list.

Dr. Sandhu then pursued training in Child, Adolescent, and Adult Psychiatry at the University of California at Los Angeles, Neuropsychiatric Institute (now named the Semel Institute for Neuroscience & Human Behavior). While at UCLA completing his residency and fellowship he was named the Chief Fellow of the Child and Adolescent Psychiatry training program. He then proceeded to work at UCLA as part of the Attending Staff on the Child and Adolescent Inpatient unit. He is a member in good standing of the American Psychiatric Association (APA), the American Academy of Child and Adolescent Psychiatrists (AACAP) and has served as the Southern California Regional Organization’s President.

His areas of interest include attention deficit hyperactivity disorders, mood disorders, anxiety disorders, and the roles coordinated psychiatry and psychotherapy can have in jointly improving outcomes.

Dr. Sandhu lives in the Los Angeles area with his family and is actively involved in teaching medical students, residents, and fellows at the David Geffen School of Medicine at UCLA. In his free time, he enjoys surfing, snowboarding, basketball, golf, video games, and travel.

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