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Can I get SSD benefits for obsessive-compulsive mental disorder?

Mental illness can be difficult to pinpoint and define. Often, Oklahomans who are suffering from it are not even aware that it can reach the severity to warrant getting Social Security disability benefits. One mental disorder that afflicts many people is obsessive-compulsive disorder, otherwise known as OCD. Having OCD can result in an approval for SSD benefits if all the necessary criteria are met.

People with OCD tend to harp on certain issues or rituals and continually focus on them to the detriment of their life. They are unable to control their obsessions and compulsions and it can prevent them from living a normal life, working and more. Understanding the requirements to receiving SSD benefits for this mental disorder is vital before applying. With OCD, there must be a medical documentation of one or both of the following: being preoccupied with involuntary and time-consuming intrusive and unwanted thoughts; or behaving in a repetitive manner in an effort to stem the feelings of anxiety.

The person must also have an extreme limitation or have a marked limitation of two of the following: understanding, remembering or applying information; interacting with others; concentrating, persisting or pacing; adapting or managing him or herself. If they do not meet that criteria, they can also receive benefits if the mental disorder is classified as serious and persistent meaning that there is medical documentation of it being in place for a minimum of two years. There must also be evidence of both of: medical treatment, mental therapy, living in a highly-structured setting, psychosocial support that is continuous and reduces the symptoms and indications of the disorder; and a marginal adjustment meaning that there is a minimal ability to adapt to environmental changes or demands that are not in the person's day-to-day life.

Having OCD might be something that the person is embarrassed about or does not fully understand. There could be other issues along with it. However, people who are suffering from this mental disorder should know that they can get Social Security disability benefits for mental conditions. Contacting a legal professional experienced in helping clients with qualifying mental conditions is the first step.

Source: ssa.gov, "12.06 -- Anxiety and obsessive-compulsive disorders," accessed on Sept. 25, 2017

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