Go To Couples Counseling
Couples counseling is essential for working through upset over a bipolar partners actions. Its common for someone with bipolar disorder to hurt and offend their partner. When someone is first diagnosed, there are often relationship issues that need to be addressed. Couples counseling can help you:
- Understand that theres an illness involved in the hurtful behavior.
- Forgive the behavior that happened during an altered mood state.
- Set boundaries with a partner about maintaining treatment.
Dangerous Aggressive And Violent Behavior In Bipolar Disorder
I work with parents and partners of those with bipolar disorder. In the majority of situations, people who are in a strong dysphoric manic episode can be dangerous, aggressive, and violent. Physical assault and weapons are not uncommon. Many men go to jail because of this behavior when they actually need psychiatric help. People who are mild-mannered and kind when well, both men and women, get superhuman strength along with the aggressionripping a sink out of the wall, punching through windows, throwing chairs, and other dangerous behaviors are not uncommon.
Families and partners suffer in silence because they are scared to tell anyone about what really goes on at home.
I have violent thoughts when dysphoric mania is raging. I used to chase down cars if the driver flipped me off or made a strange face. It is not my goal to scare anyone reading this. Its my goal that we are honest about these hidden and pushed-under-the-rug symptoms of bipolar disorder.
The solution is management. People with bipolar do not have these symptoms unless the mood swings are raging. Prevent the mood swings, and you can prevent the dangerous, aggressive, and violent behavior.
Qualifying For Disability Based On Reduced Functional Capacity
If you don’t qualify under the SSA’s requirements for bipolar disorder, above, the SSA must next consider to what extent your bipolar symptoms impair your ability to work . The SSA will give you a rating of the type of work it thinks you can do . This is called your mental residual functional capacity .
If the SSA finds that you cannot perform even unskilled work , the SSA might grant you benefits under a “medical-vocational allowance.” But if you didn’t meet the official listing above, it’s likely the SSA will find that you can do at least unskilled work. And since there are so many unskilled jobs in our economy, it’s unlikely that you’ll be granted disability benefits unless you are 55 or older and have no more than an elementary school education. For these reasons, most claimants applying for disability benefits for bipolar disorder either qualify under the official listing above or they don’t qualify at all. However, if you have a physical impairment in addition to bipolar disorder, your physical RFC combined with your mental RFC can rule out so many unskilled jobs that there aren’t any left you can do.
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Do You Need More Help
Contact a community organization like the Canadian Mental Health Association to learn more about support and resources in your area.
Founded in 1918, the Canadian Mental Health Association is the most established, most extensive community mental health organization in Canada. Through a presence in more than 330 communities across every province and one territory, CMHA provides advocacy and resources that help to prevent mental health problems and illnesses, support recovery and resilience, and enable all Canadians to flourish and thrive.
A Real Bipolar Disorder Disability
But even if none of that convinces you, you should understand this: bipolar disorder is certainly is a condition that limits a persons ability to participate in daily activities.
In fact, I cant tell you the number of daily activities that are limited by my bipolar disorder. Everything from major things like working for a living to tiny things like showering are dramatically impacted by my illness. Every day is impacted by my bipolar disorder disability. I am in no way exaggerating when I say that.
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Is Bipolar A Serious Mental Illness
Health experts class bipolar disorder as a serious mental illness, along with schizophrenia and major depressive disorder. They have this classification because all three conditions can significantly impair a persons quality of life. People also present with symptoms relatively early, so their mental illnesses can interrupt their lives for many years.
Almost 90% of people with bipolar say medications help them manage their condition. However, establishing the issue can be challenging, with just 25% of people receiving an accurate diagnosis in less than three years. People with bipolar often spend up to 10 years waiting for the correct diagnosis.
When its left untreated, bipolar can cause severe problems. People with bipolar usually live 9.2 years less than people without the condition. As many as 20% of people with bipolar commit suicide. They are also more likely to behave impulsively and engage in risky behaviors, including substance abuse and unsafe sexual practices. People with bipolar also struggle to maintain positive relationships with friends and family members.
Does Bipolar Disorder Qualify Me For Social Security Benefits
The symptoms of bipolar disorder can be extreme enough to prevent an individual from working. If this is the case for you, you may qualify for Social Security disability benefits.
Bipolar disorder is a mental health condition characterized by alternating periods of mania and depression. There are two main types of bipolar disorder, Bipolar I and Bipolar II, and each may have slightly different criteria for diagnosis.
Bipolar I is characterized by distinct periods of mania and depression, though some individuals will also experience symptoms of hypomania, a state of mania where symptoms are milder. In order to be diagnosed with Bipolar I, manic symptoms must last at least one week and occur for most of the day every day or result in hospitalization. Approximately 30% of individuals diagnosed with Bipolar I experience severe symptoms.
Bipolar I is most commonly diagnosed around age 18. Individuals with Bipolar I are often diagnosed with additional mental health conditions, such as anxiety. In order to be diagnosed with Bipolar I, individuals must also experience a period of significant depression.
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Medical Opinions About Your Depression Or Bipolar Disorder
You will need a statement from your treating doctor or a psychologist regarding the severity of your depression. For example, your doctor might give an opinion that you would miss several days of work each month due to your depression. Make sure the doctor provides an explanation for this opinion.
Continue to see your doctor or therapist during the waiting process for benefits so that you can amass a long treatment history in your medical records. The SSA cannot easily deny the opinion of a therapist who has consistently found you to have a severe mental disorder and who has clinical signs supporting this opinion. If you cannot afford to see a doctor or therapist on a regular basis, the SSA may send you to a consultative examination with a psychologist. For more information, see Nolo’s article on getting a doctor’s report for disability.
Applying For Disability Benefits With A Mental Illness
Mental and psychological disabilities are among the conditions that can qualify for benefits from the Social Security Administration . You may qualify with severe depression, bipolar disorder, an anxiety disorder, or another mental illness that prevents you from maintaining gainful employment.
Social Security disability benefits can cover everyday living expenses, medical bills, and other financial obligations. Benefits are paid monthly and can alleviate many of your financial worries, making it possible for you to get by without income from employment.
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What Are The Disabling Symptoms Of Bipolar Disorder
Bipolar disorder is a disabling condition caused by a chemical imbalance in the brain resulting in severe mood swings. It is characterized by periods of manic activity punctuated by exceptionally bad periods of depression. Both the highs and lows of bipolar disorder are intense and can interfere with all aspects of your daily life.
You can absolutely qualify for long term disability benefits due to bipolar disorder. However, you will need to provide strong evidence to your insurance company of your disabling symptoms to get your claim approved.
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Can I Receive Disability Benefits For Bipolar Disorder
August 24, 2019 By Bross & Frankel
Slowly but surely, the stigma around mental illness is being erased. People are more willing to talk about their mental health, which has made it easier and more acceptable for individuals to seek treatment for mental illness.
Despite the many advances in medication and therapy, in some cases, mental health conditions are still disabling. This is sometimes the situation with bipolar disorder. For individuals with this condition, it may be difficult to impossible to hold down a job while managing the symptoms of their illness and receiving treatment. This can be particularly true if you experience periods of remission and relapse, or good days and bad days.
Bipolar disorder affects an estimated 4.4% of American adults at some point in their lives. The majority of people with bipolar disorder are seriously impaired by their condition which may affect their ability to work. As with other mental health conditions, people with bipolar disorder may be eligible for Social Security Disability benefits.
The Social Security Administration considers bipolar disorder as one of many mental illnesses that may qualify for benefits. A skilled Philadelphia disability benefits attorney can work with individuals with bipolar disorder to analyze their individual situation and put together a strong application.
How To Apply For The Ndis
Starting the application process is itself simple all you need to do is call the NDIA and ask to submit an Access Request.
However, you may be required to provide a lot of evidence to support your disability claim and this can take a lot of time and effort.
For expert advice, speak with one of our CareAbout Advisers today.
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Ways To Qualify For Social Security Disability Benefits Due To Bipolar Disorder
If the Bipolar Disorder is constant and impairs most abilities to function in a work environment, the Claimant may be entitled to Social Security Disability benefits if he/she meets the evaluation criteria listed in the Social Security Administrations Blue Book, and has received a medical vocational disability endorsement based on the persons residual functional ability, education and age. These requirements are also known as meeting the Listings and are fairly rigid in evidentiary proof.
To meet the Listing, a Claimant must have a history of consistent manic or depressive episodes, or a combination of both. The Claimants Bipolar Disorder should result in two of the following three restrictions:
- Severe limitation of daily activity,
- Inability to interact with others in a normal way, or
- Recurring episodes the condition worsening which last for an extended period of time.
A second and easier method of proving Social Security Disability involves evidence of an overall reduction in the Claimants remaining functional capacity, based on age, education, and prior work efforts. If the mental residual functioning is very limited and the person is incapable of meeting the demands of basic routine repetitive activities, the Claimant could be determined disabled under this general assessment.
FREQUENTLY ASKED SOCIAL SECURITY DISABILITY QUESTIONS
Writing A Personal Narrative
Given the varying symptoms of bipolar disorder, you should explain to your insurance company how your individual symptoms prevent you from performing your job duties. You can do this by preparing a detailed, written narrative for the insurance company. In many cases, it is helpful if the narrative addresses all of your symptoms by listing them separately first. Because most symptoms of bipolar disorder are subjective in nature, your narrative can also address the severity of your symptoms, as well as factors that trigger or exacerbate your symptoms.
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What Are My Rights Under The Ada/social Security
The ADA prevents people who are disabled from being discriminated against at work. Your company cant cancel a job offer or fire you because you have bipolar disorder.
You must be able to do the basic tasks your job requires, but you can ask for accommodations. Accommodations are changes to your schedule or responsibilities that make your job easier to do.
Examples of accommodations for people with bipolar disorder are:
- a flexible schedule
- extra breaks during the day
- a desk organizer or planner
- noise cancelling headphones
- job coaching
- a support animal
Under the ADA, you also have a right to privacy. You dont have to tell your employer that you have bipolar disorder unless you want to share that information.
You can get Social Security disability benefits if your bipolar disorder is severe enough to prevent you from working or if it limits your ability to do your job.
Whether you can work depends on how severe your bipolar disorder is, and how much your symptoms affect your daily life.
Symptoms like mood swings, irritability, and trouble concentrating can make it harder to do many jobs.
In general, people with bipolar disorder have a harder time working than those who dont. Between never go back to work full time after their symptoms start.
It may be harder for you to work if you have:
- severe bipolar disorder
- frequent episodes of mania and/or depression
- constant low-level depression
- psychotic symptoms, such as hallucinations or delusions
What Are My Chances For Eligibility
To get protection under the ADA, you have to prove that a disability like bipolar disorder severely limits your ability to work. The ADA covers companies with 15 or more employees.
Getting Social Security benefits can be trickier. You need to have a disability and be a part of a low-income household or have worked for a certain number of years.
Not everyone with bipolar disorder qualifies. About two-thirds of applications for disability benefits are denied at first.
To get Social Security benefits, the SSA will ask you to show that:
- youve lived with bipolar disorder for at least 1 year
- your condition is severe enough to prevent you from doing your job or any other job
- your disability will last for more than a year
To qualify for SSDI, you need to have worked at a job where you paid Social Security taxes for a certain number of years.
The older you are, the more years you need to have worked. A 42-year-old must have worked for 5 years, while a 30-year-old only needs 2 years of work.
To qualify for SSI, you need to earn less than a certain amount of money. That amount varies by state. You also cant have more than $2,000 in assets .
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Disclosing A Psychiatric Disability: Legal Protections
- Disclosure is a choice. According to the ADA, employers cant require applicants or employees to disclose a disability . So, in most cases, disclosing a psychiatric disability is a choice, not a requirement. Individuals who choose not to tell about their mental health condition are not lying or hiding. They are using a legally protected choice.
- After the job offer. Once a job has been offered, applicants may be asked to take a medical exam before starting work. If this exam reveals a psychiatric disability, the job offer can only be withdrawn if there is evidence that the person wont be able to do the essential functions of the job without an accommodation and cant be reasonably accommodated or the disability poses a real safety issue.
- On the job. Employees generally cant be required to disclose a psychiatric disability unless requesting a job accommodation. Then, the employer can ask for some medical documentation about the disability. This medical information cant be shared with others in the workplace.
- Federal contractors. Employers who are federal contractors must invite applicants and employees to voluntarily self-disclose a disability. This information is only used to track the progress in meeting disability employment goals of the employer. It must be kept confidential and cant be shared with the manager or co-workers.
For Social Security Disability Insurance Beneficiaries
If you receive SSD benefits, you have a trial work period of nine months that allows you to test your ability to work without risking your benefits. Be sure to check how many months you have left of your trial work period before you begin. A month only counts if you earn over $720. After the trial work period ends, you will not receive benefits in months where you earn over $1000. For three years after the end of your trial work period, you can begin receiving benefits again if you stop earning $1000/month and you?re still disabled this is called Expedited Reinstatement of Benefits, or EXR.
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What Can I Do About It
Depression and bipolar disorder can be very challenging. Many people blame themselves for their feelings or wonder why they cant just get over it. Some feel like they have to live with difficult feelings because they worry about what others will think if they ask for help. The symptoms of the illnesses themselves can make it hard to seek help. Depression and bipolar disorder are real illnesses, and they deserve care and support. People can and do recover.
Beyond Treatment: Things You Can Do
Regular Exercise: Regular aerobic exercise, such as jogging, brisk walking, swimming, or bicycling, helps with depression and anxiety, promotes better sleep, and is healthy for your heart and brain. There is also some evidence that anaerobic exercise such as weightlifting, yoga, and Pilates can be helpful. Check with your health care provider before you start a new exercise regimen.
Keeping a Life Chart: Even with proper treatment, mood changes can occur. Treatment is more effective when a patient and health care provider work together and talk openly about concerns and choices. Keeping a life chart that records daily mood symptoms, treatments, sleep patterns, and life events can help patients and health care providers track and treat bipolar disorder over time. Patients can easily share data collected via smartphone apps including self-reports, self- ratings, and activity data with their health care providers and therapists.
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