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Facts about Antisocial Personality Disorder and Filing for Disability

How to prove you are disabled
and win disability benefits

1. Antisocial personality disorder is a chronic mental illness that is shaped during the forming of the personality and is thought to be caused by a combination of environmental and genetic influences. Those with antisocial personality disorder have a disregard for the right of others, and often violate the rights of others because of their blatant disregard.

2. There are many symptoms for antisocial personality disorder, including: lack of remorse, lying, stealing, lack of empathy for others, recklessness, inability to set and reach long-term goals, narcissism, depression, agitation, aggression, disregard for the safety of others, verbal abuse to others, inability to keep jobs or stay in school, lack of guilt, starting fights, drug abuse, alcoholism, breaking the law, impulsiveness, and more.

3. In childhood, children with ASPD may engage in activities such as being cruel to animals or setting fires.

4. Many times the symptoms of antisocial personality disorder are the most active during the late teen years and the early to mid 20ís, and may improve by the time a person is around 40 years old, but that is not always the case. It is more common in men than women.

5. There is no specific treatment for ASPD. To help treat the disorder, psychotherapy such as cognitive behavioral therapy and psychodynamic psychotherapy is often used, and stress management and anger management skills are taught. Antidepressants, antipsychotics, mood stabilizers and anti-anxiety medications are also used.

6. In severe cases of ASPD, hospitalization may be required.

7. Complications of ASPD are fairly straightforward, given the symptoms. They are: aggression, child abuse, alcohol or drug abuse, problems in relationships, problems at work and school, risky and reckless behavior, suicidal tendencies, depression, anxiety, and incarceration.

8. Diagnosis of ASPD depends on quite a few things. First, to be diagnosed you must be at least 18 years old and have had symptoms of ASPD before the age of 15. You also must have at least 3 symptoms, including aggression, irritability, lack of empathy, lack of guilt, disregard for social norms, and the inability to have lasting relationships.

Can you qualify for disability benefits with this condition?

Whether or not you qualify for disability and, as a result, are approved for disability benefits will depend entirely on the information obtained from your medical records. This includes whatever statements may have been obtained from your treating physician (a doctor who has a history of treating your condition and is, therefore, qualified to comment as to your condition and prognosis).

It will also depend on the information obtained from your vocational, or work, history if you are an adult, or academic records if you are a minor-age child. The important thing to keep in mind is that the social security administration does not award benefits based on simply having a condition, but, instead, will base an approval or denial on the extent to which a condition causes functional limitations. Functional limitations can be great enough to make work activity not possible (or, for a child, make it impossible to engage in age-appropriate activities).

Why are so many disability cases lost at the disability application and reconsideration appeal levels?

Speaking as a former Disability Claims Examiner, I can state that there are several reasons:

1) Social Security makes no attempt to obtain a statement from a claimant's treating physician. By contrast, at the hearing level, a claimant and his or her disability attorney will generally obtain and present this type of statement to a judge;

2) Prior to the hearing level, a claimant will not have the opportunity to explain how their condition limits them, nor will their attorney or representative have the opportunity to make a presentation based on the evidence of the case. At the hearing level, of course, this is exactly what happens. And a number of disability representatives will also take such steps even earlier, at the reconsideration appeal level;

3) Disability judges, unlike disability examiners who decides cases at the first two levels of the system, can make independent decisions without being overturned by immediate supervisors--which happens frequently.

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Information on the following topics can be found here: Social Security Disability Questions

Social Security Disability SSI decisions | The Disability Decision Process and What gets taken into Consideration | Getting Denied for Disability Benefits | Questions about Social Security Disability Approvals and Being Approved | Social Security Disability Hearings | Social Security Medical Examinations | Social Security SSI Doctors | Social Security Disability Representation | Social Security Disability SSI Reviews