Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder and Social Security Disability

Individuals who live with Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (also known as ADHD) are normally able to live normal, productive lives with little to no interference from the condition as long as it is controlled with medication. Unfortunately, in some situations, Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder can be quite severe and may result in an individual's inability to perform gainful work activity. Fortunately, if a case of ADHD is interfering with an individual's ability to earn an income, Social Security Disability benefits may be able to help. If you are suffering from Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder and are wondering whether or not you may qualify for Social Security Disability benefits, the following information can help you understand how the Social Security Administration (SSA) processes disability claims based on ADHD.

Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder - Condition and Symptoms

Those who suffer from ADHD have a difficult time focusing and completing tasks. These individuals also have a hard time controlling their behavior and are often hyperactive in nature. The severity of the condition varies from person to person. Some people may exhibit very few symptoms while others will experience symptoms that interfere with their ability to work, complete an education and sustain healthy and functional relationships.

When Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder is diagnosed, there is a checklist of symptoms that doctors will refer to. The symptoms of the condition fall into two different categories including hyperactivity-impulsive symptoms and inattentive symptoms. There are three sub-types of Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder including Predominantly Hyperactive-Impulsive, Predominantly Inattentive and Combined Hyperactive-Impulsive and Inattentive. The sub-category you are diagnosed with will depend on which of the two ADHD symptom categories your symptoms fall within.

Individuals who have the Predominantly Hyperactive-Impulsive form of ADHD will experience six or more symptoms in the hyperactive-impulsive category of symptoms and fewer than six symptoms in the inattentive category. Those who suffer from Predominantly Inattentive Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder will display six or more symptoms in the inattention category and fewer than six symptoms in the predominantly hyperactive-impulsive category. Those who suffer from Combined Hyperactive-Impulsive and Inattentive Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder will display six or more symptoms in both categories.

In most cases, an individual living with Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder will be diagnosed with the Combined Hyperactive-Impulsive, Inattentive sub-type of the condition. Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder usually develops during childhood. In some cases, individuals can and will grow out of ADHD, but 60 percent of children who are diagnosed with the condition will carry it into adulthood.

Many of the people who suffer from Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder also suffer from other associated conditions. It is not uncommon for a person living with ADHD to also have a diagnosis of depression or anxiety.

The symptoms of Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder will vary from individual to individual. Some common symptoms of the condition include easy distraction, forgetfulness, the tendency to switch frequently from one activity to another before finishing the previous activity, difficulty focusing, quickly becoming bored with tasks, difficulty completing assignments, difficulty listening, daydreaming, trouble following instructions, fidgeting, squirming, non-stop talking, constant motion, being impatient, inappropriate behavior or comments, impulse control issues and a tendency to interrupt.

There is no cure for Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder, although treatment can help a patient manage the symptoms of the condition. A patient who is suffering from ADHD may undergo psychotherapy and training in order to help manage their condition. Medications are also available to help control the symptoms of Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder.

Filing for Social Security Disability with Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder

When an applicant applies for Social Security Disability benefits, the examiner reviewing the claim refers to a published listing of impairments referred to as the Blue Book. This Blue Book lists the disability guidelines for a number of common disabling conditions. Fortunately, Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder is included in this published listing of impairments.

Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder is listed under Section 112.11 of the Blue Book. It is important to note that this listing refers to children, although adults can qualify for disability benefits due to Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder as well as long as they can prove that the condition prevents them from being able to perform substantial gainful work activity.

As a general rule, in order to qualify for Social Security Disability benefits due to Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder you must experience marked impulsiveness and marked hyperactivity. You must also have an impairment in age-appropriate communication, cognitive abilities, social functioning and/or personal functioning.

Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder and Your Social Security Disability Case

Many of the applicants who apply for Social Security Disability benefits due to Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder will be denied during the initial stage of the Social Security Disability application process. In fact, only about 30 percent of Social Security Disability claims are actually ever approved at this stage. If your application is one of the 70 percent that are denied, you may still be able to obtain the Social Security Disability benefits you need.

Working closely with a qualified Social Security Disability attorney and your treating medical professionals can help you obtain disability benefits due to a case of Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder. Statistics show that individuals who work with an attorney have a better chance of obtaining benefits at the any stage of the Social Security Disability application process.