Obsessive Compulsive Disorder, OCD is a chronic, long-lasting, compulsive disorder that affects a person's daily life from mild to severe symptoms of obsessions and compulsions. While mere compulsions may come off as acceptable, severe OCD has long lasting effects that can cause major distress and disruptions in everyday life of a person.
OCD can be divided into 4 subtypes including:
1. Contamination obsessions with washing/cleaning : This is associated with discomfort associated with contamination or cleanlessness up to the point of major distress
2. Harmful obsessions with checking compulsions: This includes intense thoughts with a possibility of harming oneself or another person
3. Obsessions without visible compulsions: This may include possible triggers such as unwanted compulsions surrounding sexual, religious or aggressive themes leading to abnormal behavior
4. Symmetry compulsions with ordering, arranging and counting: This is accompanied by symptoms of extreme obsession to 'set things right' up to the point of potential danger, such as, 'if I don't put this glass like this, my husband might die in a car accident'. When in truth it is far from the reality.
Applying for Disability for OCD
The repeated unwanted compulsions and thoughts may greatly disrupt a person's life up to the extent that it makes them unable to perform substantial gainful activity, SGA. The SSA would look into all of the following evidence to determine whether a person's OCD is really disabling. However, if the SSA determines that you can perform some other kind of work not affected directly by your OCD, then you might be denied SSDI based on OCD.
It is important that you have evidence to prove that your OCD is not reigned in consciously and is in fact, disabling. We suggest that you make sure your disorder is well documented. The SSA may require the following to determine your eligibility for SSDI claims for OCD:
- - All reported symptoms
- - Medical, psychiatric, and psychological history
- - Results of physical or mental status examinations, structured clinical interviews, psychiatric or psychological rating scales, measures of adaptive functioning, or other clinical findings
- - Psychological testing, IQ tests, imaging results, or other laboratory findings
- - Diagnosis as mentioned by doctor's notes
- - The type, dosage, and beneficial effects of medications taken
- - The type, frequency, duration, and beneficial effects of therapy received
- - Side effects of medication or other treatment that limits the ability to adaptive and cognitive functioning
- - Clinical course, including changes in the medication, therapy, or other treatment, and the time required for therapeutic effectiveness
- - Observations and descriptions of how the person functions during examinations and/or therapy
- - Information about sensory, motor, or speech abnormalities, or about the person's cultural background (for example, language or customs) that may affect an evaluation of their mental disorder
- - The expected duration of the person's symptoms and signs and their effects on his/her functioning, both currently and in the future
In addition to the documents above, any testimonials from your healthcare providers, neighbors, caretakers, family, or bosses may be helpful to show evidence of your OCD as disabling.
Starting the Disability ClaimYou can consult a disability lawyer for more detailed guidance and personalized step-by-step information on how to apply for disability benefits for your OCD or apply directly at SSA Website.