Executive Function Strategies Blog

How to Tell the Difference Between Shyness and Social Anxiety

Editor’s note: This week, we feature guest blogger Ari Fox, LCSW-R, of CopeWithSchoolNYC.com, where a version of this article was published. Please read more about Ari below.

"He's just a shy boy!" 

"She'll outgrow her clinginess."

When is a child showing typical degrees of shyness and when does it become more concerning? It can be easy for parents to overlook social anxiety in their child because they think the child is just shy or reserved. Yet social anxiety is much more serious than shyness. And while they can look similar, it’s important to understand the signs and know what you can do to help your child interact confidently and build healthy relationships.