SSDRC authored by Tim Moore
Filing a Social Security Disability Application - How to File & the Information that is Needed by SSA
Do you need a Lawyer at the Administrative Law Judge Disability Hearing?
Social Security Disability Back pay and How Long it Takes to Qualify for it
How do you prove your disability case if you have a mental condition?
What Can I Do to Improve My Chances of Winning Disability Benefits
Common Mistakes after Receiving a Denial of benefits
If You Get Approved For SSDI Will You Also Get Medicare?
How much is paid for the Social Security Disability Attorney Fee?
How long does it take to be approved for SSI or Social Security disability?
How To Get Disability Through SSDI or SSI Approved
Should you get Help from a Disability Attorney before the Claim has been Denied?
Answers to questions about SSD and SSI disability
Qualifying for Disability - What is Social Security Looking for?
How do I check the status of my Social Security disability claim?
What Expenses Will A Social Security Attorney Charge In Addition To The Fee?
Facts about Major Depressive Disorder (Depression) and Filing for Disability
How to prove you are disabled
and win disability benefits
1. Major depressive disorder is a serious illness that can affect a personís health, relationships, work life, and school life.
2. Those with major depressive disorder, also known unipolar disorder, major depression and clinical depression, have a very low mood that affects their ability to function in life. They lose interest in once pleasurable activities, and feel worthless, hopeless, guilty, and helpless.
3. Many people with major depressive disorder withdraw from society, experience insomnia, have a reduced sex drive, and have thoughts of suicide or death.
4. Major depressive disorder affects women more often than men. That being said, anyone can have major depressive disorder: women, men, children, and teenagers of any age or race.
5. The cause of major depressive disorder is not known, though it is thought that it is caused by imbalanced chemicals in the brain. The imbalance is thought to be hereditary, or brought on my stressful or traumatic events in oneís life, or a combination of both.
6. Psychotherapy and antidepressants are the most common treatments for major depressive disorders. Types of antidepressants most commonly prescribed are SSRIs (selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors), SNRIs (serotonin and norepinephrine reuptake inhibitors, NDRIs (norepinephrine and dopamine reuptake inhibitors), atypical antidepressants, MAOIs (monoamine oxidase inhibitors), and tricyclic antidepressants.
7. In some cases, anti-anxiety or antipsychotic medications, as well as mood stabilizing medications or stimulants, depending upon the patient and their needs.
8. Lifestyle changes can help improve quality of life, but cannot cure major depressive disorder; it is important to seek medical advice. Getting plenty of sleep each night, avoiding drugs and alcohol, getting daily exercise, and sticking to psychotherapy treatments and medications, can help relieve symptoms.
9. It is believed that some alternative medicines can help relieve symptoms of major depressive disorder, such as SAMe or St. Johnís Wort, though it is important to let your doctor know if you are trying alternative medicines. There can be dangerous interactions between medications and herbal or dietary supplements.
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.
Return to: SSDRC, or the Social Security Disability Questions page