Anxiety disorder and work
Can an anxiety disorder patient claim for disability?
Anxiety Disorder: Is Anxiety A Disability?
When you are suffering from a mental disorder, one of the most important remedies you can get is to have scheduled regular visits with your counselor or psychologist. If you consult a doctor about anxiety issues, you have a sounding board or someone who patiently listen to your fears and helps you cope with these worries as constructive and realistic as possible. So with this, the last things you would want to have are a very expensive consultation bill and a long sick leave from work. The cost of seeing a doctor has the potential risk to make an anxious patient feel restless, worried, and fearful. And the amount of time you spend out of work because you cannot perform your duties well makes you think less of yourself and worry about how you can go on with life without your income. So you turn to your Social Security disability benefits for coverage. But is anxiety a disability?
It is normal to feel anxious about a lot of things. A normal level of anxiety can be felt while waiting for your grades to come out, for example, or when you are waiting for an employer’s call for an interview, or before you speak in public. These instances elicit nerves and worries that normal people deal with every day. Anxiety becomes a disorder if your symptoms hinder you from performing your regular duties and responsibilities at work, obstruct you from concentration, and affect your relationships with other co-workers and people in general.
Different countries state different rules and laws about mental disorders as a work disability. For instance, in the UK, the mental disorders that they consider as disability are dementia, major depression, bipolar disorder, schizophrenia, obsessive-compulsive disorder, and psychosis. These mental disorders are noted on their Equality Act of 2010 which states that if any of these disorders affect the patient for at least 12 months or a year, he or she is entitled to receive disability benefits.
In the US, the first thing an employer or the Human Resources would do if an employee reports having been suffering from an anxiety disorder is to let that worker fill out a form and supply them with necessary medical information about his condition. The requirements differ from every state, so making sure that the employer and the HR are aware of these requirements makes them compliant about the state and federal laws. Once an employee is proven to be disabled by anxiety disorders, they may be given work considerations, limitations, and restrictions to accommodate their mental condition.
More than getting disability benefits, the most important thing now is to be correctly diagnosed and treated for your mental condition. No man wants to remain sick for a long time. It is not healthy for a self-sufficient individual who is physically able to perform work for a living be succumbing to a mental condition that can be resolved by nonpharmacologic means, like therapy and meditation.