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SSDI for Anxiety


Anxiety can be debilitating, and it affects millions of people. Indeed, according to the Anxiety and Depression Association of America, “anxiety disorders are the most common mental illness in the US, affecting 40 million adults (19.1 percent of the population) age 18 and older every year.” While some types of anxiety disorders will interfere only minimally with a person’s ability to function, some anxiety disorders can be crippling. As such, there are situations in which a person may be able to qualify for Social Security Disability Insurance (SSDI) benefits due to an anxiety or related disorder. In order to qualify, you will need to meet the specific requirements outlined in the Blue Book (which we will explain in detail below), or you will need to otherwise have medical evidence that shows your anxiety disorder is expected to last at least one year and that it is preventing you from engaging in substantial gainful activity.

Our national disability benefits lawyers can provide you with more of the information you need.

Types of Anxiety Disorders 

While many people refer simply to “anxiety,” or “having anxiety,” there are very specific types of anxiety disorders that have different symptoms and frequently require different forms of treatment. The Anxiety and Depression Association of America lists the following as common types of diagnosed anxiety disorders and related disorders:

  • Generalized anxiety disorder (GAD);
  • Panic disorder (PD);
  • Social anxiety disorder;
  • Specific phobias;
  • Obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD);
  • Post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD)

To be clear, this is a list supplied by the Anxiety and Depression Association of America, rather than a list of disorders that can make a person eligible for SSDI payments. Instead, in order to determine SSDI eligibility, you will need to look at the Blue Book and to consider the specific effects of your anxiety disorder.

Blue Book: Mental Disorders Include Anxiety and Obsessive-Compulsive Disorders 

The Blue Book is a name for the text that the Social Security Administration (SSA) uses to determine whether or not an SSDI applicant has a condition that makes them eligible for SSDI or Supplemental Security Income (SSI) benefits. Merely being diagnosed with a specific condition is not usually sufficient for disability benefits. Instead, you will need to be diagnosed with the condition and will need to experience it as the SSA outlines.

Mental disorders are classified under section 12.00, and anxiety and obsessive-compulsive disorders are specifically under section 12.06. The requirements are very specific, so you should talk with your health care provider and your disability benefits lawyer about whether your condition meets the requirements outlined in the Blue Book.

Contact a National SSDI Benefits Lawyer 

If you are experiencing anxiety or an obsessive-compulsive disorder that is preventing you from engaging in any meaningful work and is interrupting activities of daily living, you could be eligible to seek disability benefits through the SSA. As we discussed above, whether or not an anxiety disorder will qualify a person for SSDI benefits will depend upon the severity of the disorder and its material effects on the person’s life and ability to engage in substantial gainful activity. For any questions or assistance with your SSDI application, one of the experienced national SSDI benefits lawyers at the Law Offices of Stephen Barszcz can speak with you today.




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