The impact of alcohol use disorders and alcohol consumption on treatment-seeking individuals with social anxiety disorder

Mirjana Subotic-Kerry*, Andrew J. Baillie, Lexine A. Stapinski, Maree J. Abbott, Jo MacDonald, Jonathan E. Gaston, Ronald M. Rapee

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

1 Citation (Scopus)

Abstract

Comorbid social anxiety and alcohol use disorders (SAD-AUD) in the community and the complex interactions that occur between these disorders have emerged as a significant clinical, public health, and research issue. The authors examined (a) the rates of comorbid SAD-AUD, (b) the impact of comorbid SAD-AUD on outcomes targeting social anxiety disorder, and (c) the effect of pretreatment alcohol consumption and alcohol use before, during, and after social situations on a composite measure of social anxiety in 172 adults presenting with social anxiety disorder. There was low incidence of AUD in this sample of individuals with SAD. Results indicated that alcohol consumption did not lead to worse social anxiety symptoms; however, alcohol use before and during social situations was associated with more severe social anxiety symptoms. These findings suggest that the function of alcohol use may be more important than the overall level of alcohol use and has implications for treatment.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)100-122
Number of pages23
JournalBulletin of the Menninger Clinic
Volume85
Issue number2
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Jun 2021

Keywords

  • comorbidity
  • alcohol drinking
  • social anxiety

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