If you're looking into your Social Security Disability (DDS) options, you should know that mental disorders can qualify you just like physical disabilities would. Disability is not all about injuries or physical issues. If you suffer from a serious mental disorder, it can absolutely make it impossible for you to focus on a career, and you can look into financial assistance options as a result.
So, what disorders qualify? Perhaps the easiest way to explore them is to look at the 11 main categories that the government has recognized. They are:
- Neurocognitive disorders
- Autism spectrum disorder
- Eating disorders
- Impulse-control disorders and personality disorders
- Intellectual disorder
- Neurodevelopmental disorders
- Obsessive-compulsive disorders (OCD) and anxiety
- Bipolar disorder, depressive disorders and related disorders
- Disorders related to trauma and stressors, such as PTSD (post-traumatic stress disorder)
- Somatic symptom disorder and disorders related to it
- Psychotic disorders, such as schizophrenia spectrum disorder
For some, these disorders will last for life. Someone with schizophrenia may be able to take medication to help manage it, for example, but may never fully recover. For others, the disorders can significantly improve over time. Our medical knowledge of PTSD has gotten much better as of late, for instance, so there are more treatment options out there -- though nothing guarantees that any disorder will be fully cured. The time of disability differs for everyone.
This is why it is so important to know exactly what legal options you have and what steps you need to take. This can be a complex process, but there are things you can do if you suffer from disorders that fall within any of these categories.