Disability Problems and Knowing the Different Common Conditions

When applying for Social Security Disability, the seriousness of its influence on your daily activities and your condition is often more important than which injury or illness you have. This is especially true with respiratory problems and disability problems.

On one hand, the Social Security Administrations criteria for disability are constant whatever kind of disability you have. Namely, to qualify for total, long-term disability and Social Security Disability benefits, you need to be deemed incapable of performing any work that you’ve done before; incapable of adjusting to any other kind of work that’s available to individuals of your education level; and suffering from a disability which is expected to last over a year or end in your death. Respiratory problems fall under the identical broad guidelines as any other potential disability.

On the other hand, ailments take to establish as a total disability compared to disability problems. You will have to document your respiratory problems and how they’ve affected your ability to work for at least a year. You should do this with your doctor’s help. You’ll have to be under a doctor’s care and demonstrate that you’re still incapable of performing work after you’ve followed your physician’s instructions regarding your respiratory problems for at least a year to qualify for Social Security Disability, typically.


You need to demonstrate that it affects your daily activities and ability to perform work to qualify for Social Security Disability due to having asthma. To be considered a potential total disability, you need to have attacks at least once every two months (six per year) which necessitate a physician’s treatment. Asthma attacks which require hospitalization count as two strikes.


Clients with emphysema have damaged lung tissues. The most common symptom is a cough. Often, though not always, emphysema is caused by smoking cigarettes. To be able to qualify for Social Security Disability with emphysema, you will have to demonstrate that you’re following your physician’s instructions (this will often mean giving up smokes) and fully participating in any treatment and medication prescribed.

Restrictive Lung Disease

With this illness, your lungs are prevented from exchanging and ventilating gasses. The result is that your blood ends up lacking oxygen. RLD may be caused by bacterial or viral causes, but often it is caused by inhaling harmful substances such as asbestos or from radiation such as that used to treat forms of cancer. It may also be a side effect of a variety of serious diseases. As with most respiratory problems, you will have to prove your RLD makes it impossible for you to accomplish any significant work.

Stroke-Related Respiratory Problems

People stricken with this condition face difficulty breathing while they recover from a stroke. In some cases, the respiratory problems are severe enough to qualify them for disability benefits. The SSA relies on lung capacity tests to ascertain whether your problem is severe enough to warrant Social Security Disability. You will also want to thoroughly document all cases of shortness of breath and how it influenced your daily activities, along with any other related post-stroke symptoms.


The most common kind of arthritis, osteoarthritis, occurs when the cartilage on the ends of your bones wears down. This can lead to pain and stiffness in the joints, swelling, muscle weakness, and a diminished range of motion in the joints. Osteoarthritis can occur in any joint but is often found in the hands, hips, knees, or spine.


Depression is the leading cause of disability in the U. S. Many older people suffer from depression, especially if they suffer from other medical conditions like Parkinson’s disease, Alzheimer’s disease, heart or respiratory problems, alcoholism, or anxiety disorders.

People with serious depression find it hard to perform in a steady job and to take care of themselves. Due to the number of disability applicants applying based on depression (either as a primary medical condition or secondary), Social Security has stringent criteria you must meet to be able to qualify for disability benefits based on depression, dysthymia, or bipolar disorder.

Alcohol or Drug Addiction

Since 1996, a person may no longer obtain Social Security disability insurance (SSDI) or SSI benefits for alcoholism or drug addiction alone. You can, however, get disability benefits for harm caused by the alcohol or drug abuse such as emotional problems, liver damage, cardiovascular disease, or cancer. But this is true only if you are no longer drinking or abusing drugs, or if your condition is so severe that the damage caused by the drugs or drinking is irreversible.

Seizure Disorder

Epilepsy is a brain disorder that causes recurring seizures. There is often no known cause, although it may be caused by a condition such as cerebral palsy or strokes. The symptoms of a seizure can range to convulsions and loss of consciousness. Seizures can vary in frequency, although in order to be diagnosed with epilepsy you have to have had two seizures.

Epilepsy is mainly treated with drugs, which are effective in reducing the severity and the frequency of seizures in over fifty percent of epilepsy patients. However, even mild seizures can be dangerous if they occur at certain times, such as when you’re swimming or driving and could limit your ability to perform some work activities.

Stroke (CVA, Cerebrovascular Accident)

A stroke may be caused by a brain hemorrhage (hemorrhagic stroke) or a blocked blood vessel (ischemic stroke), which subsequently causes a lack of blood circulation to the Brain and result in harm. The effects of a stroke vary but may also include difficulty walking speaking, and viewing. Most stroke patients suffer from impairment of some kind. For some people, the impairment lasts for only a certain period. About 75% of stroke victims have residual effects and for some, these effects make it impossible to work.

As with any disability problems, you can be approved for Social Security disability or SSI due to the consequences of a stroke by fulfilling the conditions of Social Security’s disability problems listing or that based on a medical-vocational tolerance (which compares your functional limitations to the vocational skills required by a job).

Bottom Line about Disability Problems

If you have a problem of any kind which you believe may qualify for Social Security Disability you must begin the claims process sooner rather than later because claims often take a considerable period. You should consider calling a Social Security Disability attorney or advocate to assist you.

Read More: Lifetime Disability and Important Things to Know about