Shyness vs Autism: The Main Differences

Are you shy? Do you have trouble communicating with others? Do you feel awkward when faced with strangers or when you have to speak publicly? If so, you might be an introvert.

Pervasive social anxiety disorder is an official type of shyness that can have a serious impact on your life. You worry about acting in socially appropriate ways, which makes you self-conscious.

So, what exactly is social anxiety, and how can it be distinguished from autism?

Read on to learn how to tell the difference between shyness vs autism.

Let’s get into it!

What is Shyness?

Shyness is a general reluctance to interact with others. This feeling is usually due to social anxiety or fear. For most people, shyness is usually temporary, and it can sometimes be overcome.

Shyness is a normal reaction that most people experience at one time or another. It is a feeling of fear, anxiety, or just simply feeling uncomfortable in certain social situations.

Shy children or adults often feel a sense of self-consciousness or apprehension. This is when they are around others or in unfamiliar situations. It can be so uncomfortable that individuals may need to retreat into their comfort zone, where they feel less vulnerable.

What is Autism?

Autism is a neurodevelopmental condition, meaning that the disorder has neurological and behavioral symptoms that arise early in life. They may struggle to make eye contact or engage in conversations.

People with autism may display behaviors that conform to social standards but lack the ability to interpret and respond appropriately to cues such as facial expressions and gestures. In addition, conversational language may be absent or used inappropriately, with autistic individuals overusing or underusing vocabulary.

Symptoms of Shyness

Symptoms of shyness are typically observed in social situations, such as anxiety when interacting with strangers or becoming easily intimidated due to the fear of being judged.

It may demonstrate excessive self-consciousness, avoid eye contact, and have difficulty communicating. Autism can also cause issues with interpreting nonverbal communication, such as body language and facial expressions.

Symptoms of Autism

Autism is a developmental disorder that is diagnosed in early childhood and typically involves impaired social skills, communication difficulties, and repetitive behaviors or special interests. Symptoms of autism may include difficulty in making eye contact, lack of interest in others, and difficulty in playing with other children.

Also, an ABA agency in New York can help individuals with autism diagnosis by providing evidence-based interventions that target specific behaviors and skills. For instance, they might use reward systems to increase desired behaviors or role-play social situations to help the individual understand how to interact with others.

Top Differences of Shyness vs Autism

Shyness vs autism are two distinct conditions that have some similarities. However, the main differences include the source of the behaviors, the degree of severity, and the context of the symptoms.

Seeking help from a professional healthcare provider is the best way to determine which condition exists and the best treatment plan for that individual.

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