Tuesday, July 9, 2024

Are Panic Attacks Considered A Disability

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Panic Attacks And Your Ability To Perform Physical Work

Panic Attack Social Security Disability Help

When you suffer a panic attack, you may not be able to do much of anything physically. If your panic attacks occur frequently, this can make it impossible to perform any kind of physical labor or maintain employment that requires physical labor. In some cases, while panic attacks are not dangerous in and of themselves, a panic attack can create an unsafe situation in a work environment.

Your ability to perform physical work, as determined for Social Security Disability purposes, is likely to depend on both the frequency and severity of your panic attacks. Its extremely important to make sure that you document all attacks, including how long they lasted, what symptoms you suffered, and how it affected your ability to perform work or other daily activities.

In order to qualify for Social Security Disability, you must be found unable to perform any physical work, including light physical work which requires lifting 10 pounds regularly and 25 pounds occasionally. While panic attacks will not prevent you from performing work directly , the disruption they cause to a work routine may be considered in determining that you cant perform repetitive physical work.

How To Qualify For Anxiety Disability Benefits

To qualify for anxiety disability benefits, you must apply with the SSA and go through the same process as for any other disability. You must be able to show that your anxiety is severe enough to have kept you from working for at least one year. Before you begin your Social Security disability claim, you might consider working with a qualified Social Security disability attorney, who can review your claim and advise as to how best to move forward. If your Social Security disability claim is denied on first review, your disability attorney can help guide you through the lengthy and complex appeals process.

Based on the information in your claim, plus your work history, you can apply either for Social Security Disability Insurance benefits, which require that you have previously worked and earned sufficient work credits. Or you may choose to apply for Supplemental Security Income, which does not require you to have earned any work credits as long as you meet income qualifications.

When you apply for SSDI or SSI benefits, there are several anxiety diagnoses that can result in your receiving disability benefits. You may have a diagnosis for a generalized anxiety disorder, PTSD, obsessive-compulsive disorder, a panic disorder, or agoraphobia.

Va Compensation For Panic Disorder Everything You Need To Know

Veterans who developed a panic disorder because of an in-service event or developed a panic disorder while serving in the U.S. military may be eligible for VA disability benefits. A VA disability attorney will help you with an appeal for veterans disability benefits. Once you are approved for VA disability benefits, you will begin collecting a monthly check if you are ultimately awarded a compensable rating and you may also have access to free VA health care.

For a free disability consultation, call today.

Read Also: Can A Person With Ptsd Work

Is Anxiety Considered A Disability

More studies are now proving that mental disorders, such as anxiety, are as disabling as physical disorders. Accordingly, it is becoming a debate whether or not people with anxiety should receive the same benefits as those with physical disabilities. To answer this question, we must first understand what disabilities are and at what point does the government consider anxiety as a disability.

Disability Caused By Anxiety Disorder

Is Anxiety Considered A Disability?

First, let’s look at how the SSA evaluates the severity of anxiety disorders. Before it pays benefits, the SSA requires a mental disorder to be so severe that it disrupts your life to a point where you become unable to work at any type of job . In addition to fitting within a specific diagnosis below , your anxiety disorder must cause severe limitations in the following areas:

  • understanding and remembering instructions and learning new things
  • interacting with others appropriately
  • concentrating and persisting to complete tasks, and/or
  • managing oneself

Alternatively, you might be able to qualify without having symptoms of the above limitations if your anxiety has improved with medication or psychosocial support, but your recovery is tenuous and you could experience a setback if you go back to work. To qualify under this alternative, your anxiety must be medically documented as having lasted at least two years, and you must have minimal capacity to adjust to changes in your environment or an increase in mental demands.

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Should I Claim Disability For My Anxiety Disorder

So, you know what the expectations are for those claiming disability due to an anxiety disorder. Now the question is, Should I claim disability for my anxiety disorder?

While the appeal of a free paycheck and minimizing your exposure to stress might sound nice, is it really whats best for you in the long run?

The answer to this question is going to depend entirely upon your personal situation and long-term goals. If your anxiety is extremely severe in nature and your interest is solely in minimizing it rather than overcoming it, filing for disability may be worthwhile.

If youre young, early in your career, or hoping to actually beat anxiety long-term rather than merely avoiding its triggers then my opinion would be to avoid filing for disability due to anxiety disorder.

Now, this is a matter of opinion, but the root of the problem with claiming disability for anxiety is this:

Getting out of working is considered avoidant behavior. Avoidant behavior is extremely appealing to those of us with anxiety. We think, if we stay away from what stresses us out, well have less anxiety.

While we try and rationalize this as a good idea, its often a terrible strategy for coping with anxiety long-term. The reason for this is because avoidance actually reinforces our anxiety disorder.

Rather than claiming disability outright, giving in to your disorder, I recommend you consider some alternatives.

When A Mental Health Condition Becomes A Disability

A mental health condition is considered a disability if it has a long-term effect on your normal day-to-day activity. This is defined under the Equality Act 2010.

Your condition is long term if it lasts, or is likely to last, 12 months.

Normal day-to-day activity is defined as something you do regularly in a normal day. This includes things like using a computer, working set times or interacting with people.

If your mental health condition means you are disabled you can get support at work from your employer.

There are many different types of mental health condition which can lead to a disability, including:

  • dementia

Recommended Reading: How To Break The Cycle Of Health Anxiety

Can You Get Disability For Panic Attacks

Disability for panic attacks is available for Ontario residents. This is usually granted under the individuals long-term disability insurance. However, long term disability benefits are only available to individuals that have suffered from this condition for more than 90 days, and the condition is expected to last for a year or more.

The process of obtaining long term disability can be complicated and confusing. This is especially true with mental health conditions. Since a mental health disorder is not something that you can see, the person making a claim must be able to prove the disorder exists through medical records and treatments.

Anyone who does not suffer from panic attacks cannot truly appreciate how debilitating these episodes are when they occur. Even a mild panic attack can make a person freeze and become unresponsive or cause them to start crying, shaking, or lose control. Severe panic attacks will debilitate the individual and can even lead to additional medical issues such as heart palpitations, fainting, and high blood pressure.

What causes panic attacks will vary from person to person. Most people that suffer from panic attacks have already been diagnosed with an anxiety disorder, and anxiety is what triggers the attack. Sadly, these attacks can come at any time and in any place. Many people suffering from anxiety and panic attacks find it challenging to maintain employment because of this condition.

What Are Panic Attacks

Is Anxiety A Disability?

Generally, panic attacks are short, intense episodes of extreme fear or psychological distress. Some people describe them as a short period of apprehension or terror with a sense of doom. Symptoms may include heart palpitations, shortness of breath, sweating, hyperventilation, choking, paresthesias , and a multitude of other symptoms that may lead an individual to think they are dying or going insane.

A panic attack is different from normal feelings of being extremely worried or “stressed out,” in that it occurs suddenly, without any warning, and without any way to stop it, and that the level of fear is way out of proportion to the actual situation.

A panic attack is not dangerous, but it can be terrifying, largely because sufferers feel they are not fully in control of their actions or emotions. Panic disorder often leads to other complications, such as depression, substance abuse, medical complications, and even suicide. Ironically, people with panic disorder often develop additional phobias that come from fear of the panic attack itself. In these cases, people will avoid certain objects or situations because they fear that these things will trigger another attack.

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Checklist: Is My Mental Health Problem A Disability

You can ask yourself these questions:

  • Do I have a mental or physical health impairment?
  • Is it long-term ?
  • Does it have a more than minor adverse effect on my day-to-day living, if I discount my treatment or medication?
  • If you answered yes to all three questions, then your mental health problem could get the protection of the;Equality Act.

    If you want to get the protection of the Equality Act, you may find it helpful to get some evidence from your GP, or another medical professional. You can ask them to write a letter saying whether they think you have a disability under the Equality Act. It would be particularly useful if they can give their opinion on the answer to each of these three questions.


    Esra doesnt consider herself disabled because she doesnt receive disability benefits and she is physically healthy.

    Esra has been living with an anxiety disorder for the past 3 years. Because of this, it takes her a longer time to do things like get up in the morning, dress herself for the day and do the shopping. She takes medication to control the symptoms.

    Esra would be protected by the;Equality Act because she has:

    • a mental impairment; an anxiety disorder
    • it is long term; she has had it for the past 3 years
    • it has a substantial effect on her daily life; her mental health has a major effect on her daily life when you ignore the effect of her medication ;
    • it has an adverse effect; her mental health problem makes things more difficult for her.

    Military Service And Panic Disorder

    Serving in the U.S. military is one of the most honorable but challenging careers a person can have. While military service is rewarding, it can also lead to a number of mental ailments and mood disorders.

    One such condition is panic disorder, where you suffer severe and debilitating panic attacks in stressful situations. During a panic attack, your blood pressure spikes, you may become disoriented and you may lose the ability to function rationally.

    Panic disorder often goes hand-in-hand with agoraphobia a fear of crowds and open spaces. Veterans with agoraphobia may experience panic attacks when forced to venture out in public.

    Read Also: What Types Of Medications Are Available For Adhd And Schizophrenia

    Specific Medical Evidence Needed For An Anxiety Disorder

    Your doctor or psychologist may have diagnosed you with a general anxiety disorder, a post-traumatic stress disorder , an obsessive-compulsive disorder , a panic disorder , or agoraphobia . The SSA will want to see evidence of any psychological testing or evaluations diagnosing you with anxiety, and any treatment notes by your doctor showing that you have been consistently reporting symptoms of anxiety.

    Most importantly, you will need to explain what happens as a result of your anxiety. For instance, if you are at work and you have a panic attack, what do you do? Will you leave the job site? Do you lock yourself in the bathroom for an hour? Or, will you suffer in silence but become unable to complete your work tasks that day due to difficulty with memory and concentration? You should try to obtain a medical opinion from your treating doctor regarding your level of anxiety , what triggers your anxiety, and the effect of your anxiety disorder on your ability to work. If possible, you could also try to get a statement from your past employer regarding any work absences due to anxiety symptoms.

    Evaluating Anxiety As A Disability

    Can You Go on Disability for Anxiety?

    If an employee comes to you and says they have a disability and asks for an accommodation, one of your first responses should be to ask them to fill out a medical information form. This form will require that they visit their physician and have them complete the necessary information.

    In addition to Federal laws, many states have laws that regulate the medical information that an employee is required to give their employer. Make sure that your paperwork is compliant with all laws, and double-check with your attorney.

    If the doctor has determined that the employee has a disability, they may list areas where the worker could benefit from accommodations. These suggestions may be aimed at the employee to consider.

    Also Check: What To Do When Someone With Ptsd Pushes You Away

    Alleviate Anxiety With Canadian Disability Benefits

    Everyone has experienced anxiety in one way or another.

    For most of us, anxiety means being apprehensive, or careful; sometimes its the catalyst thats motivates us to take decisive action. But for others, anxiety can heighten to level where the perpetual presence of anxiety symptoms negatively affects the persons quality of life.

    This mental illness is known as anxiety disorder, in which a person cant deal with certain stresses or issues and become obsessive about it. Anxiety can worsen if it isnt treated correctly, and can lead to other problems including panic disorder, panic attacks, and even symptoms of depression.

    Panic Attacks And Your Ability To Perform Sedentary Work

    Sedentary work requires little physical exertion, but does require you to sit in one place for several hours uninterrupted. Often, sedentary work requires being able to work with people, special training, or a high degree of manual dexterity . Whether your panic attacks hinder you from any of these things largely depends on what is causing the attacks. Make sure your mental health professional clearly lists all known contributing factors to your panic attacks and any effects these have on your daily activities, and hire a Social Security Disability lawyer who is experienced in handling panic attack cases to represent you.

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    How Can The Nba Help Me

    Anxiety is considered a disability by the Canadian government, and as such, may qualify those suffering from the illness for disability benefits. The types of benefits may vary with the severity of the condition, but their purpose is the same to enable a person to live a life where their disability does not dampen their quality of life.

    The National Benefit Authority has similar goals. As Canadas top Disability Tax Credit service provider, weve helped thousands of differently-abled Canadians qualify for and claim disability benefits. Our specialists have guided over 40,000 Canadians and counting, recovering upwards of $50,000 per application!

    Many Canadians, who are entitled to a disability tax refund from the government, dont claim them because they are unaware of the available Canadian disability benefits, or because the DTC application is simply too time-consuming and complex. With the NBA, those concerns are covered we oversee the entire process, from determining your Disability Tax Credit eligibility, through receiving your Disability Tax Credit. We follow up directly with the CRA but work on your behalf to provide you peace of mind.

    Getting Disability For Panic Disorder

    Panic ATTACKS | Mental Health | Disability (Inspired By A Viewer)

    If you believe that you need to get disability for panic attacks, the first thing that you should do is seek medical advice. You will need medical proof that you have an anxiety disorder and that this disorder is impacting your ability to work and live your life as you did prior to the onset of symptoms.

    It is also essential that you follow through with the medical treatments given to you for the condition. The insurance company will automatically deny your application for long term disability benefits if they believe you are unwilling to do anything to help the condition improve.

    The next thing that you should do is speak with a long-term disability lawyer. The insurance company is going to be very aggressive about denying your claim. They will look for any reason to deny the validity of an anxiety disorder claim, including active surveillance of the applicant and monitoring of social media accounts.

    Something as simple as hugging family members in your driveway and laughing with them as they depart from their visit can be seen as proof that you do not have anxiety attacks. The insurance company is not interested in the fact that it was your family that came for a visit, and you were saying goodbye. They dont care that even though it was your family, you were laughing nervously because the situation was so stressful that you felt an attack coming on. They simply have pictures of you hugging people and laughing in your driveway.

    Recommended Reading: Does Bipolar Mean Your Crazy

    You Can Do This: Work Incentives Made All The Difference

    After receiving benefits counseling, Lori worked with Paula at Employment Options on a new resumé. They created an Individual Work Plan a list of tasks and goals that would help her find a job. Loris IWP focused on jobs that would allow her to work from home, that would be engaging and challenging, and that would enable her to earn a regular, steady income.

    I knew I had the potential to do something and Paula kept telling me you can do this. I just needed a little help making it happen.

    Employment Options told Lori about Social Security rules called Work Incentives. Work Incentives make it easier for adults with disabilities to explore work while still receiving Medicaid or Medicare and some cash benefits from Social Security. Because Lori received SSDI benefits, she would be able to test her ability to work during a nine-month Trial Work Period , while still getting cash benefits.

    After Loris TWP ended, a 36-month Extended Period of Eligibility would begin. During the EPE, most people with a disabling impairment can receive cash benefits for all months in which they earn less than the Substantial Gainful Activity level for that year. Lori was relieved and felt less anxious when she realized that when she found a job, she would not suddenly lose her Medicare and cash benefits. She would have time to decide if and how full-time employment would work for her.

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