Slepian Smith, PLLC

Phoenix Arizona Disability Law Blog

When suffering from severe anxiety, support can be critical

This month, readers of this blog might start hearing more about people with mental health disorders, as May is Mental Health Awareness Month across the U.S.

Raising awareness is crucial, because although millions of people suffer from mental illnesses, most do not receive treatment. For instance, as noted by the Anxiety and Depression Association of America, 44 million people in the country struggle with an anxiety disorder. Only 33 percent receive treatment.

What happens if carpal tunnel syndrome becomes disabling?

Carpal tunnel syndrome affects millions of Americans. This uncomfortable - and sometimes disabling - condition can be especially common among women, people who work on an assembly line or people who perform data entry, though it can affect any adult.

The condition affects a nerve that runs between a person's forearm and palm. When this nerve is squeezed or compressed at the wrist, it can cause pain, swelling, numbness and tingling in the hand, wrist and forearm.

Cystic fibrosis: a serious illness with demanding treatments

Cystic fibrosis is a serious genetic condition that affects numerous organs, including the pancreas, intestines and lungs. It causes mucus to be thick and sticky, which causes clogged airways, lung infections and respiratory failure.

Unfortunately, there is no cure for CF. And because it is a progressive condition, the longer a person has it, the worse his or her symptoms will get.

Compassionate Allowances can expedite your disability decision

Qualifying for disability benefits is often more complicated than people expect. One major obstacle people typically face is proving that a condition does in fact meet the Social Security Administration's definition of disability. This is because most conditions and illnesses have varying degrees of severity and may or may not be disabling.

However, there are conditions that the SSA can more quickly identify as disabling because they are usually life-threatening and among the most severe types of illnesses. These conditions are collectively referred to as Compassionate Allowances.

The Challenges of Fibromyalgia

As advanced as medicine is today, there are still countless medical conditions that are not well understood. Some illnesses cannot be treated or diagnosed with certainty at all. These illnesses complicate patients' lives as well as their access to critical benefits for which they might be eligible, like disability benefits.

One example of this type of illness is fibromyalgia. Statistics show that millions of Americans suffer from fibromyalgia, but there is no one treatment or diagnostic tool that gives sufferers the definitive answers they are often looking for.

Skin disorders that can cause severe impairment

Did you know that our skin is our largest organ? According to National Geographic, the average adult is carrying about eight pounds and 22 square feet of skin.

Due to its size and exposure to the elements, our skin is particularly vulnerable to injury and stimulation that can cause severe health problems. And just like any other organ, it can be affected by diseases and disorders that cause serious impairment.

Is obesity a disabling condition?

The Social Security Administration defines a disabling condition as a mental or physical impairment that is expected to last for at least 12 continuous months. The condition must be medically determinable and prevent a person from engaging in substantial gainful activity.

People who suffer from obesity might therefore assume that it fits these criteria - but that assumption is usually not true.

Lupus and the many challenges of its symptoms

Every serious health problem has the potential to dramatically affect a person's life, relationships and abilities. If a person has multiple conditions that cause a wider array of symptoms, it can be even more difficult to manage their impact.

For instance, a person with systemic lupus erythematosus might struggle with several difficult illnesses and conditions because the immune system isn't working as it should be.

What you should know if you are at risk of HCV

Hepatitis C is a potentially serious disease that leads to nearly 20,000 deaths every year. It can cause permanent damage to a person's liver, and unfortunately, many people do not even know they have it.

With this in mind, it is important to understand the risk factors of becoming infected with HCV.

PTSD: Recognizing the signs, and when it can become disabling

After a traumatic event, it is not unusual to experience troubling physical and mental changes. For millions of people, these changes include development of a disorder called post-traumatic stress disorder, or PTSD.

PTSD can be a complicated condition, and people might mistake it for something less serious. However, PTSD can be a severe, disabling condition that warrants aggressive and ongoing treatment, so it is wise to know what PTSD might look like.