Can I Work With Traumatic Brain Injury?
Traumatic Brain Injury is brain injury that is caused by an outside force, whether that force entered the cranial cavity or simply caused acceleration or blunt force trauma. This is often the result of an accident or violence. Some Traumatic Brain Injury victims are able to recover fully and continue without any significant alterations to their lives.
Often, victims of Traumatic Brain Injury are rendered unconscious after the injury, though this isn’t always the case. Secondary damage can occur as a result of internal bleeding in the head, especially if the victim is not treated quickly. Timely medical response and treatment is essential in recovering from the damage caused by Traumatic Brain Injury .
Those who suffer a Traumatic Brain Injury may have any combination of many symptoms. Traumatic Brain Injury can result in physical, mental, emotional, behavioral, and cognitive problems. Among the more common symptoms of traumatic brain injuries are loss of motor skills, dizziness, balance loss, blurry vision, distorted speech, and speech difficulty (in particular difficulty coming up with words). In some cases, breathing, blood pressure, and heart rate can be adversely affected by a Traumatic Brain Injury.
Traumatic Brain Injury does not have its own listing in the SSA’s Blue Book, though it is briefly mentioned as a potentially disabling condition. Generally speaking, Social Security Disability adjudicators judge traumatic brain injury by the standards used for other neurological and cognitive impairments.
Traumatic Brain Injury and Your Ability to Perform Physical Work
Depending on what part of the brain in affected, you may experience a wide range of physical limitations. These limitations may affect any part of the body, and may vary in severity. This is often due to the brain’s inability to communicate with various parts of the body because of the damage caused by the Traumatic Brain Injury.
In many cases, this can improve with various medical and therapeutic treatments. You will want to make sure that you are seeing a doctor regularly and that all attempts at treatment are thoroughly documented. If your disabilities are expected to last more than a year, you should consult a Social Security Disability attorney to help you file a Social Security Disability claim.
A Traumatic Brain Injury does not automatically qualify you for Social Security Disability benefits. You must show that your injury or the resulting symptoms make it impossible for you to perform any kind of work which you are qualified for.
If your injury does not directly affect your ability to perform physical tasks such as walking and lifting, you may still qualify for Social Security Disability if your cognitive ability or behavior has been affected enough that you are unable to follow instructions or otherwise cope with a typical work environment.
Traumatic Brain Injury and Your Ability to Perform Sedentary Work
Sedentary work generally involves staying in one place (sitting) for a considerable amount of time. Most sedentary jobs require special skills or education, though there are some sedentary jobs which don’t. Most unskilled sedentary jobs require you to be able to make use of your fine motor skills to assemble or repair small parts.
Whether or not your condition hinders you from being able to perform sedentary work depends on what symptoms you are experiencing. It is important that you include every way your disability affects your day to day life, as this will be considered when determining if you qualify for Social Security Disability payments.
It cannot be stressed enough that you should consider hiring a Social Security Disability lawyer to help you with your Social Security Disability case, especially if your initial claim is turned down and you need to go through the appeals process. Your Social Security lawyer not only improves your chances of having your claim accepted, but they can also make the process far easier on you.
- Do You Qualify?
- Application Process
- Medical Conditions
- Disability Resources