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Does Mental Health Impact Your Disability Status?

Does Mental Health Impact Your Disability Status?


In analyzing and processing Social Security Disability cases, we find that claimants often make a particular, surprising mistake on their applications: They don’t include all of the information relevant to their health condition! As unexpected as this might be, it’s understandable. Human nature makes us more likely to downplay symptoms and discomfort, perhaps out of a sense of politeness or even pride. But when you’re filing for Social Security Disability benefits, you really must set aside those feelings and include every bit of information regarding your condition, no matter how small you believe it is.

For example, many people who have developed a physical disability or a serious illness will also suffer from depression and anxiety as a result of their condition. But because their primary disability is a physical one, they don’t consider how important their mental health status really can be. Leaving that information off of the application doesn’t do anyone any favors, because Social Security examiners need to understand the full extent of your condition regarding your ability to work.

For example, depression and anxiety often result in lowered productivity in the workplace. These conditions impact concentration, impair judgment, and can affect the way you interact with others. In many cases mental health triggers a decline in reliability, through no fault of your own, and can cause affected individuals to make poor decisions regarding safety in certain conditions. Depression and anxiety also contribute to insomnia and fatigue, can trigger headaches, and might make you more likely to develop additional physical health problems in the future.

If you take medication for these conditions, that information should also be included on your disability application. Side effects from the medications you need can also impair your ability to work. Look at it this way: Your primary physical condition triggered depression and anxiety, which then led to a need for medication, which then caused uncomfortable side effects which impact your daily life. So, all of these things are related to your original condition!

If you’ve been denied Social Security Disability benefits, a lack of thorough information (evidence) is often the reason. Give us a call to schedule a free consultation, and we’ll help you determine if your application is lacking important documentation that could help you win your case during the appeal.