Epilepsy is a chronic disorder caused by unusual electrical activity in the brain. Surges of electrical signals trigger recurring seizures that can range from mild episodes to severe convulsions. Over 2 million Americans suffer from epilepsy.
Though a considerable number of people may experience an unprovoked seizure once in their lifetimes, generally, at least two unprovoked seizures are required for an epilepsy diagnosis. Fortunately, for more than half of epilepsy sufferers, medications are successful in bringing symptoms under control. But for those that don’t respond to treatment, epilepsy symptoms can greatly interfere with everyday activities, including work.
Epilepsy and Social Security Disability
If you have epilepsy that is not well-controlled by treatment and prevents you from performing job duties, you may be able to collect Social Security Disability benefits for your condition. There are two specific impairment listings for epilepsy provided by the Social Security Administration: one for convulsive epilepsy and another for nonconvulsive epilepsy.
Convulsive epilepsy: mainly refers to intense “grand mal” seizures characterized by intense body stiffening and shaking and a loss of consciousness.
Nonconvulsive epilepsy: involve partial seizures or “petit mal” seizures marked by staring, subtle body movement, and a brief loss of awareness.
Although they may appear less severe, “petit mal” seizures can nonetheless be disastrous if they occur in certain work situations, such as while driving or when operating machinery. If you don’t meet the specific criteria for either of the epilepsy listings, you may still be able to recover disability benefits if you can prove that your epilepsy symptoms prevent you from working.
Social Security Disability Benefits for Epilepsy
The constantly looming threat of another seizure can restrict an epilepsy sufferer’s life enormously and may severely limit the victim’s ability to complete basic work-related tasks. At our firm, we understand how limiting your epilepsy can be, and we’ll take the time to answer all of your questions about disability benefits for epilepsy. If epileptic seizures are affecting your ability to work, fill out our free evaluation and find out if you may be eligible.