Applying for SSD benefits with a mental or psychiatric disability

On Behalf of | Dec 5, 2018 | social security disability

Social Security Disability benefits can be a critical lifeline for people in Indiana who are no longer able to work due to their disabilities. At the same time, many people are concerned about how they can prove their claim for benefits if their disability involves a mental or psychological condition. People who initially apply for SSD benefits are often denied at first, and the barriers for approval can seem particularly difficult for people with less physically apparent disabilities. However, SSD cases are approved on the basis of medical records, including mental health professionals, psychiatrists, psychologists and even family physicians.

These medical records should include information about how a Social Security Disability applicant deals with everyday activities as this can also reflect upon the ability to work. Mental impairments in an SSD benefits claim could include cognitive issues like memory loss or developmental disability, anxiety disorders or affective problems like depression or bipolar disorder. The disability examiner will be looking for evidence of an inability to follow instructions, learn, concentrate or handle social situations. In particular, the disability examiner will be looking for evidence of decompensation, which is when a person no longer functions adequately due to psychiatric illness, stress, fatigue or other issues.

Workers who repeatedly face episodes of decompensation on the job will find it difficult to keep and retain a job and may frequently lose their employment. However, people can still successfully pursue an SSD claim even if their illness is not linked to decompensation. For example, people with memory, attention or concentration deficits may be unable to complete workplace tasks.

People who are going through the SSD benefits system may find the experience challenging and difficult. Indianapolis, Indiana, attorneys handling Social Security Disability may be able to help people navigate the system from the initial application to the appeals process.