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Social Security Disability and Diabetes

November is American Diabetes Month in the United States.  The American Diabetes Association uses this month to conduct informational campaigns about the seriousness of the illness and its complications.  Diabetes is characterized by an inability to convert blood sugar into energy. 

The disease causes significant complications that often leave patients unable to work.  Some of these complications include eye problems and blindness, foot problems, skin problems and infections, hypertension, hearing loss, kidney damage, and more.  Many of these conditions, especially in combination, can be highly disabling.

Diabetes must be managed, because it cannot be cured. Many patients must inject themselves with insulin several times daily to control their blood sugar levels.  They must test their levels multiple times each day, maintain strict exercise schedules, and follow a restrictive diet.  Managing diabetes can be a job in itself. People with diabetes, even when the disease is controlled by medication and a healthy lifestyle, are at increased risk of fainting and losing consciousness, adding to the difficulty of working.

Although the number of diabetes cases in the United States is growing, the Social Security Administration removed diabetes from its list of impairments that qualify disabled workers for Social Security Disability (SSD).  However, this does not mean that people unable to continue working because of diabetes are ineligible for SSD benefits.  Rather, applying for SSD when you have diabetes requires focusing on the results of the illness, such as blindness or kidney damage.

It's important to have help when seeking SSD benefits for diabetes-related disability because of the need to properly document the consequences of the illness.  It's not enough to demonstrate that you were diagnosed with the disease; you must show how the side effects keep you from working.

If you are having trouble with your claim for SSD benefits based on the impairments associated with diabetes are keeping you from returning to work, turn to Binder & Binder®, America's most successful Social Security Disability advocates. Let them help you get the benefits you need and deserve. 

Source: American Diabetes Association website.

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