Unfortunately, there is a history of discrimination in the United States when dealing with mental health. People experiencing mental disabilities have been isolated, marginalized, and ignored by many of the United States programs, aimed at assisting people with disabilities. Despite any stigma, mental disabilities are very real and, at times, debilitating.
The Challenges of Mental Health Disabilities
Even the Social Security Administration has trouble handling the inherent intangible nature of a mental illness. It can be harder to obtain Social Security Disability Insurance for a mental disability than it is for a physical disability.
There are many factors contributing to this discrepancy: socially-accepted stigmas surrounding mental illness, the difficulty in assessing symptoms and diagnosing conditions, fear of malingering, and the cyclical nature of mental illness are just a few.
Mental Conditions Considered Debilitating
In an effort to assist an examiner, the SSA has listed conditions that will usually be considered debilitating and qualify for SSD:
- Mental Retardation
- Autistic Disorders
- Bipolar Disorder
- Substance Abuse Disorders
Each condition above has specific requirements that must be met before it will be considered a disability that stops an individual from engaging in any “substantial gainful activity.” Even if your condition is not listed above or you do not meet the specific requirements, your mental illness may still qualify for benefits.
You can request a residual functional capacity assessment to determine how your disability affects your ability to work and possibly qualify you for a medical-vocational benefit.
Improve Your Chances of Disability Approval
So, what can you do to help ensure your mental illness qualifies for SSA?
- Take your prescribed medication as indicated by your treating physician(s).
- Ask your treating physician for detailed notes from your treatment.
- Retain/request all documentation of any treatment.
- Contact a Social Security Disability attorney.
Learn More About Getting SSD Benefits
If you’re interested in discussing your mental illness and applying for Social Security Disability Insurance benefits, contact Phoenix Social Security Disability lawyer Jared Everton.
Call JacksonWhite at (480) 467-4395 to discuss your case today.
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