Memory Loss and Social Security Disability Benefits

Memory loss can be caused by a multitude of things. The most common causes of memory loss include medications, psychological disorders, dementia, nutritional deficiency, and head injuries. This condition can affect both short-term and long-term memory.

Symptoms of memory loss include:

  • Confusion
  • Getting lost in familiar places
  • Unpredictable mood changes
  • Forgetting common words or names
  • Misplacing items
  • Forgetting how to use common items
  • Trouble following directions

Applying for Social Security Disability for Memory Loss

Memory loss can make working difficult – in some cases, impossible. If an applicant’s symptoms are severe, they may qualify for disability benefits.

Qualifying for SSD

In order to qualify for disability benefits, applicants must suffer from one or more of the following symptoms:

  • Disorientation—especially regarding time and location
  • Short or long-term memory impairment
  • Hallucinations
  • Abrupt change in personality or mood
  • Loss of 15 or more IQ points

Before applying for Social Security Disability benefits, ask yourself the following questions:

  • Do your symptoms cause marked restriction of daily activities?
  • Do your symptoms cause difficulties maintaining social interactions?
  • Do your symptoms cause difficulties concentrating?
  • Do your symptoms cause repeated episodes of decompensation?

If you answered yes to any of the questions above, you may be eligible for disability benefits.

Necessary Medical Documentation

Because the causes and symptoms of memory loss vary from person to person, it is important to have accurate and thorough medical documentation. This will make it much easier for the SSA to evaluate your case and determine whether or not your specific symptoms qualify.

Medical documentation should include:

  • A summary of memory loss related hospital and clinic visits
  • Doctors’ notes detailing your history of symptoms and how they affect your skills and abilities
  • A history of treatments and how you responded to them
  • Any relevant medical evaluations and lab results related to memory loss

Hiring a Social Security Disability Attorney

Whether you are applying for SSD yourself or helping a relative who is experiencing memory loss, hiring an experienced Social Security Disability attorney will increase your chances of being approved.

Many people suffering from debilitating memory loss will be denied Social Security Disability benefits simply because they do not understand the application process. A professional will help you present your case completely and effectively.

Additional Resources