Trigeminal Neuralgia can be so severe that it prevents you from performing routine daily tasks as well as from working and earning a living. If you suffer from trigeminal neuralgia with frequent disabling episodes, you may qualify for disability benefits administered by the Social Security Administration (SSA).
Medically Qualifying For Disability Benefits
If you are unable to work because of trigeminal neuralgia, you can try to match a listing in the medical guide used by the SSA, which is called the Blue Book. The SSA does not have a listing specifically for trigeminal neuralgia, so there is not a specific listing you can meet to qualify for disability benefits. Trigeminal neuralgia may occur in conjunction with another chronic medical problem, such as diabetes, arthritis, or some other neurological condition which is listed in the Blue Book. You can compare the criteria of that condition to your medical records to determine if you qualify for disability benefits. The key to a successful claim is providing hard medical evidence to support your claim by confirming your diagnosis and the severity of your symptoms. If you cannot meet the specific criteria of a listing, you may still qualify using a medical vocational allowance.
Qualifying For Disability Benefits With A Medical Vocational Allowance
If you cannot meet the criteria of a Blue Book listing, you may qualify through a medical vocational allowance. This approach involves gathering supporting evidence and documentation so the disability examiner will take your medical conditions, age, work history, transferrable skills, educational background, and other factors into consideration while determining what kind of work, if any, that you can do.
You will need to provide medical records as well as a detailed work history for the last 10 years. Your claim will benefit greatly if your treating physician provides a residual functional capacity (RFC) form. The RFC should be very specific, detailing what you can and cannot do. As an example, if you are unable to stand longer than an hour, if you cannot lift more than 5 pounds, if you are unable to bend or squat, and other specific details about your physical and mental capabilities.
Applying For Disability Benefits With Trigeminal Neuralgia
If you are unable to work because of trigeminal neuralgia, you can start the disability application process. You can start the claims process online or by calling 1-800-772-1213 and speaking with a representative. Make sure you fill out the form in detail and answer every question. After the initial application process is over, it usually takes the SSA around 3 to 5 months to get back to you with their initial decision.
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