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Glossophobia or speech anxiety is the fear of public speaking.

The word glossophobia comes from the Greek gl ssa, meaning tongue, and phobos, fear or dread. Many people only have this fear, while others may also have social phobia or social anxiety disorder. Glossophobia may be defined as a very specific form of stage fright or speech anxiety which is the fear of speaking in public. Most confident people have experienced some degree of nervousness or anxiety when they have to give a speech, presentation, or perform on stage. They still manage to cope with the occasion even though they are not enjoying it. However, people who suffer from glossophobia (referred to as glossophobics) may deliberately avoid situations where they would have to speak in public. This can happen when an employee has to make a presentation to the rest of his department and becomes completely frozen. It can happen at a social gathering where the thought of meeting new people causes you to become nervous and edgy. As a result glossophobia may hamper the sufferer s ability to further his or her academic, social or career opportunities. If left untreated, this can lead to loneliness, poor self-esteem, depression and isolation. There are helpful strategies to manage and cope effectively with glossophobia. Stage fright may be a symptom of glossophobia. Symptoms include: y y y intense anxiety prior to, or simply at the thought of having to verbally communicate with any group, avoidance of events which focus the group's attention on individuals in attendance, physical distress, nausea, or feelings of panic in such circumstances.[1]

The more specific symptoms of speech anxiety can be grouped into three categories: physical, verbal, and nonverbal. Physical symptoms result from the sympathetic part of the autonomic nervous system (ANS) responding to the situation with a fight or flight reaction. Since the modus operandi of the symphatetic system is all-or-nothing, adrenalin secretion produces a wide array of symptoms at once - all of which are supposed to enhance your ability to fight or escape a dangerous scenario. These symptoms include acute hearing, increased heart rate, increased blood pressure, dilated pupils, increased perspiration, increased oxygen intake, stiffening of neck/upper back muscles, and dry mouth. Some of these may be alleviated by drugs such as beta-blockers, which bind to the adrenalin receptors of the heart, for example. The verbal symptoms include, but are not limited to a tense voice, a quivering voice, and repetition of Umms and Ahhs vocalized pauses which tend to comfort anxious speakers. One form of speech anxiety is dysfunctional speech anxiety, in which the intensity of the fight or flight response prevents an individual from performing effectively. Help and relief Some organizations, such as Toastmasters International or Association of Speakers Clubs, and training courses in public speaking may help to reduce the fear to manageable levels. Self-help materials that address public speaking are among the best selling self-help topics.[citation needed] Some affected people have turned to certain types of drugs, [citation needed] typically beta blockers to temporarily treat their phobia. FROM WRONG DIAGNOSIS.COM FROM ABOUT.COM Glossophobia and Social Phobia

Glossophobia is a subset of social phobia, or fear of social situations. Most people with glossophobia do not exhibit symptoms of other types of social phobia, such as fear of meeting new people or fear of performing tasks in front of others. In fact, many people with glossophobia are able to dance or sing onstage, provided they do not have to talk. Nonetheless, stage fright is a relatively common experience in those with glossophobia. Complications of Glossophobia The vast majority of careers involve some level of public speaking, from participating in meetings to giving presentations to clients. If your phobia is severe, you may find yourself unable to perform these necessary tasks. This can lead to consequences up to and including losing your job. People who suffer from social phobias also have a higher than normal risk of developing conditions such as depression or other anxiety disorders. This is likely due to the feelings of isolation that can develop over time. Another possible reason is that some people seem to be hardwired for anxiety, which can manifest in a wide range of ways. Treatment for Glossophobia Glossophobia can be successfully treated in a variety of ways. One of the most common is cognitive-behavioral therapy. You will learn to replace your messages of fear with more positive self-talk. You will learn relaxation techniques and what to do when you experience a panic attack. You will gradually confront your fear in a safe and controlled environment. Medications may also be prescribed to help you get control of your fear. These medicines are generally used in conjunction with therapy rather than on their own. Once you have successfully worked through the worst of your fear, you might want to consider joining a speaking group such as Toastmasters. These groups can help you polish your public speaking skills through repetition and constructive criticism from fellow members. Building confidence in your ability to speak in public can further reduce your anxiety. Glossophobia is common, and in some cases it can be life-limiting. However, the success rate for treatment is extremely high. The first step is to find a therapist that you trust who can help you work through the fear. FROM: NATIVE REMEDIES Diagnosing Glossophobia Symptoms and signs The common symptoms and signs of glossophobia include extreme anxiety before the event or the idea of speaking in front of a group of people. Physical symptoms often appear as well which results from the body s response to a flight or fight reaction to stress. These symptoms include: y y Sweating Increased heart rate

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Feelings of nervousness or panic attack Dry mouth Tense, weak or quivering voice Stiff neck or upper back muscles

In severe cases, some people may even experience nausea or vomiting from the stress and anxiety. What causes Glossophobia? The exact cause of glossophobia is not known, although a number of factors can contribute to this disorder. Traumatic events that may have affected you as a child or during adulthood may contribute to glossophobia and cause you to avoid speaking in public. It may also occur when you have been slowly avoiding to speak publicly over a period of time and the idea of it causes you so much anxiety that it has now resulted into glossophobia. Certain psychological conditions such as where the speaker suffers from poor self esteem, always wants complete approval, believes that everything must be perfect, or expects failure can also bring about episodes of glossophobia. Help for Glossophobia Various treatment options are available to treat glossophobia. Certain drugs such as beta blockers may be used to help people relax before speaking in public. Complementary therapies such as hypnosis, meditation or psychotherapy can be quite beneficial in helping you to overcome glossophobia. View products related to Glossophobia Taking public speaking classes such as Toastmasters International or Association of Speakers Club will be able to alleviate your fears of speaking in front of others and improve public speaking skills. Counseling or psychotherapy may also help you to address the root of the problem and learn effective techniques to deal with this condition. Natural treatments such as herbal and homeopathic remedies have proven to be effective in relieving fear, anxiety and nervousness associated with public speaking events. Homeopathic remedies are not only safe and gentle to use but also fast-acting.