Is Mental Illness a Disability?
The Social Security Administration (SSA) takes into account several categories when determining if you have a mental disability. Generally, if the disorder has rendered you unable to engage in gainful employment across any field, then you may qualify for benefits.
* Serious mental illness is a disorder that substantially interferes with or limits one or more major life activities, such as work or study, relationships and family functioning. Examples of serious mental illnesses include schizophrenia, bipolar disorder and major depressive disorder.
Treatment is tailored to each individual and often combines psychotherapy (talk therapy) and medication. Some treatments are more successful when taken together, while others work best when combined.
Psychopharmaceutic drugs work by interfering with certain chemicals in the brain. As a form of treatment for certain mental health conditions, they may lift your mood and reduce feelings of depression or anxiety.
Medically-backed treatments and recovery supports are effective in treating mental disorders, helping people improve their quality of life, recover, avoid suicide attempts and regain some degree of independence. Without appropriate care and support systems in place, these conditions may negatively impact or even end a person’s life – leaving them needing extensive assistance and care throughout their journey.
Stigma can erode confidence in receiving mental health care and treatment, as well as restrict access to services. We must eliminate these obstacles so people can receive the support they need to lead healthy, productive lives.