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Do mental conditions count as a disability?

On Behalf of | Jan 20, 2023 | Social Security Disability |

The evidence of physical disabilities is often very clear. But there are numerous other disabilities that are not quite as evident and may even be invisible. These are hidden disabilities, such as mental conditions.

Because they are harder to identify, people sometimes wonder if they would even count as a disability. The good news is that many mental conditions definitely count as cognitive disabilities and can make someone eligible for the benefits that they need. Let’s take a look at just a few examples of these types of conditions so you know what to look for, but always remember that this is not an exhaustive list and there are other conditions that would also qualify. Every case is unique.

Anxiety and depression

This doesn’t simply mean feeling sad or anxious, but having a medical diagnosis that you are dealing with a disorder that may be caused by a chemical imbalance in your brain. It can be treated with certain types of medication, but these will have different impacts on different individuals. They don’t work for everyone.

Trauma-related disorders

Perhaps the best example of this is PTSD, or post traumatic stress disorder. For instance, someone who gets involved in a car accident may no longer be able to drive, meaning that they cannot get to work. PTSD can also include things like flashbacks, nightmares, aggressive outbursts, personality changes and much more.

Intellectual disorders

The SSA simply lists this as its own category, but it applies to anything that means a person cannot function at the cognitive level necessary to maintain their job. This could sometimes happen after someone suffers a brain injury, for example, because brain cells cannot be regenerated and so complete healing doesn’t always happen.

Seeking benefits

Once again, these are just a few examples, and others include things like schizophrenia, bipolar disorder, somatic symptom disorder, impulse control disorders or even eating disorders. Those who are dealing with any of these need to know exactly what legal steps to take.



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