12 doctors weighed in:
Is there a difference between social anxiety disorder and selective mutism?
12 doctors weighed in

Dr. Richard Levenson
Clinical Psychology
6 doctors agree
In brief: Social Anxiety
Yes, there are many differences.
Selective mutism is most often seen in children, while social anxiety disorder is typically seen from adolescence through adulthood. Social anxiety is related to fear (and sometimes avoidance) of interpersonal interaction in social situations, while selective mutism is a refusal or unwillingness to speak in some or most situations.

In brief: Social Anxiety
Yes, there are many differences.
Selective mutism is most often seen in children, while social anxiety disorder is typically seen from adolescence through adulthood. Social anxiety is related to fear (and sometimes avoidance) of interpersonal interaction in social situations, while selective mutism is a refusal or unwillingness to speak in some or most situations.
Dr. Richard Levenson
Dr. Richard Levenson
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Dr. Jay Park
Pediatrics
4 doctors agree
In brief: Yes
Selective mutism is typically a facet of an anxiety disorder (social phobia).
Other manifestations associated with selective mutism include excessive shyness, dependency on parents, withdrawal, and oppositional behavior.

In brief: Yes
Selective mutism is typically a facet of an anxiety disorder (social phobia).
Other manifestations associated with selective mutism include excessive shyness, dependency on parents, withdrawal, and oppositional behavior.
Dr. Jay Park
Dr. Jay Park
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Dr. Ana Adelstein
Clinical Psychology
2 doctors agree
In brief: Too scared to talk
Social anxiety involves a fear of being judged negatively by others or being seen as inferior 2 them in some way.
This leads 2 dreading social situations & social interactions, & thus 2 avoiding them. Selective mutism is tied 2 social anxiety: At times, people w/social anxiety find themselves so fearful in social situations that it's difficult 2 speak. Some simply don't speak in these situ

In brief: Too scared to talk
Social anxiety involves a fear of being judged negatively by others or being seen as inferior 2 them in some way.
This leads 2 dreading social situations & social interactions, & thus 2 avoiding them. Selective mutism is tied 2 social anxiety: At times, people w/social anxiety find themselves so fearful in social situations that it's difficult 2 speak. Some simply don't speak in these situ
Dr. Ana Adelstein
Dr. Ana Adelstein
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