Dysthymia and Social Security Disability

Dysthymia is a psychological disorder that is considered to be a form of chronic depression. Typically dysthymia lasts for an extended period of time, sometimes longer than two years. The symptoms of dysthymia can include:

  • A frequently depressed mood
  • Loss of interest or enjoyment in activities that were once pleasurable
  • Low self-esteem or feelings of hopelessness
  • Insomnia or excessive sleep
  • Trouble concentrating
  • Suicidal thoughts or attempts

Applying for Social Security Disability with Dysthymia

Even though dysthymia is often categorized as being a mild form of depression, its symptoms can lead to severe problems that make it very difficult to maintain gainful employment.

In order to qualify for Social Security Disability with dysthymia, you must be suffering from symptoms that significantly limit your ability to work.

Qualifying for SSD with Dysthymia

In order to receive approval for disability benefits, applicants must meet the criteria listed in the Social Security Administration’s blue book. More specifically, you will need to provide clear evidence that you suffer from at least four of the following symptoms:

  • Lack of interest or pleasure in activities
  • Poor appetite/overeating
  • Trouble concentrating
  • Feelings of hopelessness, guilt, or worthlessness
  • Paranoia or hallucinations
  • Insomnia or excessive sleeping
  • Decreased energy
  • Decrease in physical movement
  • Suicidal thoughts

Not only do you need to prove that you suffer from a minimum of four of the previous symptoms, but you also need to demonstrate that these symptoms limit your ability to do the following:

  • Complete daily living activities
  • Function socially
  • Concentrate or focus

Providing Medical Evidence

As dysthymia and depression impact each affected individual differently, it is essential that you provide thorough medical evidence of your symptoms. Medical evidence or documentation may include:

  • Doctor’s notes detailing the severity of your symptoms and your ability to work and socialize
  • A complete history of your treatments and how you have responded
  • A summary of past treatments that demonstrate repeated episodes
  • History of depression related hospitalizations
  • Any other applicable medical records

When collecting medical evidence, remember that you need to demonstrate the severity of your current symptoms as well as any previous history of depression.

The Importance of Having a SSD Attorney When Completing the Application Process

Applying for Social Security Disability for dysthymia can be very difficult because proving the severity of your symptoms can be quite a delicate and challenging process. As receiving approval for SSD can greatly improve your ability to cope and recover from this condition, it is crucial that you seek experienced and qualified legal support. Having an attorney help you assemble your application can greatly increase the likelihood that you will receive the timely approval that you need.