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Photo of David Dopkin

SSA report finds mental disorders are leading diagnostic group

On Behalf of | Feb 5, 2014 | Social Security Disability Benefits for Mental Conditions

People who are generally unfamiliar with the Social Security Disability program more than likely have many questions about how the system works and what they have to do to secure benefits. Unfortunately, many of these people may also have more than just questions, they may have certain misapprehensions.

For instance, many people may mistakenly believe that those suffering from some sort of mental disorder are somehow ineligible for SSD benefits.

This couldn’t be any further from the truth, however, as the Social Security Administration does indeed grant benefits to those people suffering from mental impairments who meet the established criteria for disability.

If you still don’t believe it, consider the recent release of the SSA’s Annual Statistical Report on the Social Security Disability Insurance Program.

The report — which provides an in-depth analysis of the 10,088,739 people receiving disability benefits here in the U.S. as of December 2012 — reveals that mental disorders are currently the single largest diagnostic group for disabled beneficiaries.

Specifically, the SSA determined that 3,576,844 disabled people — or 35.5 percent of these 10,088,739 beneficiaries — have been diagnosed with an otherwise disabling mental disorder. Coming in at a distant second and third for diagnostic groups are musculoskeletal system and connective tissue with 27.1 percent of disabled beneficiaries, and nervous system and sense organs with 9.4 percent of disabled beneficiaries.

The report determined that among the eight subgroups comprising the mental disorder diagnostic group — autistic disorders, childhood and adolescent disorders not elsewhere classified, intellectual disability, mood disorders, organic mental disorders, schizophrenic and other psychotic disorders, and other — mood disorder was the most commonly diagnosed condition, with 14.1 percent of disabled beneficiaries.

The SSA defines a disabling mood disorder as one “characterized by a disturbance of mood, accompanied by a full or partial manic or depressive syndrome.” Some of the symptoms typically shown by disabled beneficiaries suffering from this condition include everything from appetite disturbance accompanied by weight changes and decreased energy to difficulty concentrating and paranoid thoughts.

Remember, if you would like to learn more about securing Social Security Disability benefits for mental conditions, consider speaking with an experienced attorney dedicated to providing the assistance you need and deserve.

Source: CNS News, “35.5% of disability beneficiaries have ‘mental disorder’; 43.2% in D.C.,” Ali Meyer, Jan. 28, 2014