Does OCD Qualify Me for Disability Benefits?

OCD & Disability

Category: Disability Law

OCD (Obsessive Compulsive Disorder) is a brain disorder in which the sufferer constantly ruminates with obsessive thoughts as well as sometimes having to carry out “rituals” in order to temporarily relieve anxiety. These rituals usually include, but are not limited to, checking and rechecking locks, a perpetual washing of the hands, touching certain items, retracing steps or repeating words over and over again.

The severity of OCD is different on a patient-by-patient basis. Many people suffer from a mild form of OCD. Extreme sufferers of this disease can find it hard or even impossible to go about a daily routine and that includes their ability to earn a living.

OCD affects approximately 1 in 40 adults and 1 in 100 children. It affects men and women equally. According to the World Health Organization, OCD is in the top 10 disorders as far as decreased quality of life and loss of income is concerned.

OCD was once poorly understood but in the last few decades there have been tremendous strides made in treating OCD. Treatment of OCD includes:

  1. Behavior Therapy: Exposing patients to the object of their phobias a little a time can decrease the anxiety associated with them.
  2. CBT or Cognitive Behavioral Therapy addresses the thought process behind the fear or anxiety and helps the patient understand what s happening in their brain.
  3. Medicine therapy: Certain medicines have proven effective in relieving the symptoms of OCD. SSRI (Selective Serotonin Reuptake Inhibitors) raise the serotonin rlevels in the brain and can help eliminate the symptoms of OCD. One lesser know SSRi called Luvox (Fluvoxamine) is used more for OCD than all others. Luvox is the cousin of better-known drug Prozac (Fluoxetin).

Any disease or illness that inhibits a person’s ability to earn a living is covered under disability law. The key thing to remember is that it is incumbent on the sufferer and his or her physicians to establish the history of the disease and its severity. The attorney representing the claimant can then use this information to present a case as to why their client qualifies for Social Security Disability Benefits. .

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