Clinical picture - fear of scrutiny by other people in comparatively small groups leading to avoidance of social situations
The fears may be
discrete - restricted to eating in public, to be introduced to other people, to public speaking, or to encounters with the opposite sex
diffuse - social situations outside the family circle.
Direct eye-to-eye confrontation may be stressful.
Low self-esteem and fear of criticism.
Symptoms may progress to panic attacks.
Avoidance - almost complete social isolation.
Usually start in childhood or adolescence.
Estimation of lifetime prevalence - between 10-13 %.
It is equally common in both sexes.