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Post-traumatic stress disorder can be a disability

On Behalf of | May 14, 2020 | Social Security Disability

Social Security Disability benefits can be extremely helpful to people who have suffered a life-changing disability and cannot work. Social Security Disability benefits provide you and your family members benefits if you’ve worked long enough and paid into the Social Security system, but you must qualify for the benefits.

When you have a complicated physical disability, that’s easy to show. It’s not as easy, however, to show that you have a mental health-related disability. Just the same, disability benefits can be given to people who struggle with post-traumatic stress disorder if the condition is severe enough to stop them from being able to work.

PTSD is a serious mental health disorder. While it’s often seen with people who have been to war, it can be caused by any trauma. Assault, sexual violence, violent crimes, car crashes, medical emergencies and other serious traumatic events can lead to PTSD.

PTSD occurs in around 7 to 8% of the population in the United States at one point or another. It’s believed that around 10% of women develop PTSD at some point in their lives, while around 4% of men do. Symptoms can be so disruptive that they make it impossible for a person to work. For example, symptoms could include:

  • Flashbacks
  • Bad dreams
  • Difficulty sleeping
  • Angry outbursts
  • Negative thoughts
  • Distorted feelings
  • Being easily startled
  • Having trouble remembering key parts of a traumatic event

Having PTSD itself doesn’t necessarily mean you’ll qualify for benefits, but if it has taken a toll on your life and made it hard for you to work, then it may be time to look into seeking benefits.