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Bi-polar disorder may qualify one for SSDI in New Jersey

We have previously discussed several mental illnesses that might, if serious, make a person unable to function well enough to earn a living. One of those that we touched on was that of clinical depression. While many residents of New Jersey suffer from depression, there is another affective disorder that, while less common can be just as debilitating. This is what is called bi-polar disorder, also previously known in some circles as manic-depression.

While there are a few recognized types of bi-polar disorder, for our purposes, it is relevant to concentrate on how the Social Security Administration defines it insofar as applications for Social Security Disability Insurance or Supplemental Security Income are concerned. While bi-polar disorder is generally, and as an over-simplification, marked by different episodes of mania and depression, the depressive side of it follows the same guidelines we covered in our previous post on depression. As is the case with depression, mania can be shown for SSDI purposes by showing three out of a list of symptoms, and showing that those symptoms result in at least two of the following: limiting the ability of a person's daily functioning, ability to deal with social situations, ability to concentrate or causing episodes of decompensation.

The symptoms of mania that the SSA looks for are found in section 12.04 of its 'blue book.' Again, a person is likely to be found to be disabled if he or she can show, by reliable medical evidence, that three conditions exist. These can include inflated self-esteem, hyperactivity, lessening need for sleep, the 'flight' of ideas, swift talking or 'pressure of speech' or easy distractibility.

It is important to remember that the medical evidence needs to be solid, and that the manic episodes limit the person's ability to function. Those who believe they may have a disability due to mental illness may wish to consider speaking with an experienced New Jersey disability attorney.

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