Social anxiety disorder and social fears in the Ca...

Military mental health research has rarely investigated social anxiety disorder, despite its known serious consequences in the general population, and what work has been conducted has used specialized samples (e.g., veterans) not representative of all military personnel.

Data were from the 2002 Canadian Community Health Survey—Canadian Forces Supplement, a representative survey of 8441 active regular and reserve military personnel.


Social anxiety disorder has a high lifetime (8.2%) and past-year (3.2%) prevalence in the military. It is associated with increased odds of depression, panic attacks/disorder, generalized anxiety disorder, and post-traumatic stress disorder (AOR range 4.16–16.29). Being female, ages 35–44, or separated/divorced/widowed increases the odds of having social anxiety disorder, while being an officer or a reservist decreases the odds. Treatment-seeking, as in the general population, is relatively rare. 

Authors: Amber A. Mather, Murray B. Stein and Jitender Sareen 
Doi: 10.1016/j.jpsychires.2010.02.013