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Western Undergraduate Psychology Journal

Abstract

Social Anxiety Disorder (SAD) is one of the most common mental disorders, with lifetime prevalence rates reportedly reaching 13% of the general population. The disorder impairs personal and occupational functioning, and has created a large economic burden. An estimated 80% of individuals with SAD do not seek treatment, deterred by financial barriers, lack of awareness about treatment options, and fears about contacting health professionals. In the past decade, Internet-Based Therapies (IBTs) have been developed to eliminate some of the obstacles preventing sufferers from seeking treatment. The present paper argues that there is a clear need to develop and raise awareness about IBTs, discussing how these treatments may be more cost-effective, accessible, and appealing to individuals who have SAD. The paper also cites recent findings demonstrating the efficacy of IBTs for treating SAD, and notes suggestions for how these therapies can be improved to increase effectiveness.


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