SSDI Benefits Could Help Those With Anxiety
Anxiety can limit your activities of daily life. Understand the SSDI eligibility requirements, including the medical documentation and severity of symptoms for a successful claim. This information can increase your chances of getting SSDI for anxiety.
Can You Get SSDI For Anxiety?
If you have had anxiety or depression, you may qualify for Social Security Disability Insurance (SSDI).
To find out if you qualify, review your anxiety under the Social Security Administration’s (SSA) five-step sequential evaluation process:
1. Are you working? The SSA defines work as the ability to engage in substantial gainful activity (SGA). If you are working and earning more than SGA, your benefits will be denied. To qualify, your anxiety must prevent you from working for at least 12 continuous months.
2. Your anxiety must be severe enough to limit significantly your ability to perform basic work activities like:
- Understanding/carrying out and remembering simple instructions.
- Responding appropriately to supervision, co-workers and work situations.
- Dealing with changes in a routine work setting.
According to PubMed, the mean estimated total medical cost for individuals diagnosed with any anxiety disorder is $6,4751. The World Health Organization states that the pandemic triggered a 25% increase in prevalence of anxiety and depression worldwide.2*
3. Does your anxiety meet or equal a medical listing? Anxiety is listed under the category of impairments known as mental disorders (Medical Listing 12.06). There are several ways to satisfy the listing criteria for your anxiety:
12.06 Anxiety and obsessive-compulsive disorders (see 12.00B5), satisfied by A and B, or A and C:
A. You’ll need medical documentation of the requirements of paragraph 1:
1.Anxiety disorder, characterized by three or more of the following:
- Easily fatigued.
- Difficulty concentrating.
- Muscle tension.
- Sleep disturbance.
AND B. Extreme limitation of one, or marked limitation of two, of the following areas of mental functioning (see 12.00F):
- Understand, remember, or apply information (see 12.00E1).
- Interact with others (see 12.00E2).
- Concentrate, persist, or maintain pace (see 12.00E3).
- Adapt or manage yourself (see 12.00E4).
OR C. Your mental disorder in this listing category is “serious and persistent;” that is, you have a medically documented history of the existence of the disorder over a period of at least 2 years, and there is evidence of both:
- Medical treatment, mental health therapy, psychosocial support(s), or a highly structured setting(s) that is ongoing and that diminishes the symptoms and signs of your mental disorder (see 12.00G2b); and
- Marginal adjustment, that is, you have minimal capacity to adapt to changes in your environment or to demands that are not already part of your daily life (see 12.00G2c).
If your anxiety doesn’t satisfy a medical listing, the SSA continues to the next two steps to review how your limitations and symptoms affect your ability to work.
4. Can you perform work you’ve done in the past? If you can, benefits are denied. If you cannot, the process proceeds to the last step.
5. Are you capable of performing other work? SSA will review vocational factors (age, education, work experience), to determine what other work, if any, you can do. At this step, the SSA enlists medical-vocational rules. If SSA finds there is other work you can perform, benefits are denied. If SSA finds you do not have transferable skills to do any other work, benefits are awarded.
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