What Types of Anxiety Qualify for SSDI?

What Types of Anxiety Qualify for SSDI?

SSDI and Anxiety
Have questions about SSDI and anxiety? Contact SSDA USA today!

Suffering from an anxiety disorder can be just as debilitating as suffering from a physical disability. The Social Security Administration has provided guidelines for people with anxiety disorders because of these levels of debilitation. So, what types of anxiety qualify, and what are the requirements? Not to worry – our team from SSDA USA is here to explain the link between SSDI and anxiety.

What Is an Anxiety Disorder?

While a bit of nervousness and worry is normal in ordinary life, excessive terror and panic is prevalent in people with anxiety disorders. Anxiety disorders differ from the normal stresses of everyday life.

Normally, people with anxiety disorders experience continuous terror, panic, or otherwise alertness with no clear indicator for such responses. Anxiety disorders can cause considerable disruption in people’s lives. Agoraphobia, for example, prevents an individual from leaving their home for fear of their safety.

Examples of Possible Anxiety Disorders SSDI Covers

Generalized Anxiety Disorder

This disorder is perhaps the broadest of all anxiety disorders. It involves constant fear or worry about the future. The worry could be about minor things such as doctor’s appointments, or it could be about abstract concepts such as the long-term future. Physical symptoms may include tremors, excessive alertness, and persistent terror.


Phobias involve the unceasing and irrational fear of a specific object or concept that is not generally thought of as being harmful. As such, phobias can cause such discomfort that people often take extreme measure to avoid the thing their afraid of. A common debilitating phobia is agoraphobia, the fear of leaving one’s home.

Social Anxiety Disorder

Previously called Social Phobia, Social Anxiety Disorder involves extreme anxiousness in social situations. For example, people with the disorder may have an extreme fear of public speaking, or perhaps they endure social interactions with great difficulty. Social Anxiety Disorder can cause severe disruptions in one’s personal, work, and romantic relationships.

What Qualifies My Anxiety for Benefits?

The above are just a few examples of common anxiety disorders. The reality, however, is that no matter what, you must meet Social Security’s requirements in order to qualify for SSDI because of an anxiety disorder. Here are the requirements:

You must meet the requirements of paragraphs A and B or of paragraphs A and C to qualify for SSDI because of an anxiety disorder.

A. Medical documents for a, b, or c:

     a. An anxiety disorder that is characterized by three or more of the following:

  1. Restlessness/Hyperactivity,
  2. Easily tired,
  3. Difficulty focusing,
  4. Excessive irritability,
  5. Tension of muscles, or
  6. Disturbance of sleep.

     b. A panic disorder or agoraphobia that is characterized by one or both of the following:

  1. Panic attacks followed by a continuous concern or worry about future panic attacks or their consequences, or
  2. Disproportionate fear or anxiety about at least two different situations (for example: public speaking, being in a crowd, being in a line, being outside of your home, eating in public).

     c. An obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD) that is characterized by one or both of the following:

  1. Involuntary and time-consuming preoccupation with intrusive, undesired thoughts, or
  2. Repetitive and possibly irrational behaviors or rituals aimed at reducing anxiety.

B. An extreme limitation of one or a marked limitation of two of the following areas of mental functioning:

  1. Understanding, remembering, or applying information.
  2. Interacting with others.
  3. Concentrating, persisting or maintaining pace/flow.
  4. Adapting or managing oneself.

C. Your mental disorder in this listing category is “serious and persistent”; that is, you have a medically documented history of the existence of the disorder over a period of no less than two years, and there is empirical evidence of both of the following:

  1. Medical treatment, mental health therapy, psychosocial support(s), or a highly structured setting(s) that is ongoing and that decreases or otherwise lessens the symptoms and signs of your mental disorder, and
  2. Marginal adjustment (that is, you have minimal to no capacity to adapt to changes in your environment or to demands/requests that are not already part of your daily life) is present.

Steps to Take

The first step you should take before applying for SSDI is to consult a professional like those at Social Security Disability Advocates. Next, get the appropriate diagnosis. Without this, qualifying for SSDI becomes nearly impossible.

The next step is to present medical documentation along with your SSDI application. Remember, while a diagnosis from a doctor doesn’t alone prove disability (according to the SSA), it certainly helps a lot. Because of this, include all your medical records along with the names of doctors who have treated you, phone numbers, and addresses of medical facilities you’ve visited.

If your disability application gets denied, that’s OK. You can always try again. Consult an attorney from SSDA USA. We’ll make sure you have everything you need to qualify for SSDI.

Have Further Questions About SSDI and Anxiety?

If you have further questions about SSDI and anxiety, contact Social Security Disability Advocates USA right away! Our attorneys are always on the line to help you with all your social security concerns.

Call us 24/7 at 602-952-3200. Additionally, you can contact us online and check out our LiveChat feature. Don’t keep your questions bottled up. Call one of our attorneys today!

This is attorney advertising. SSDA, LLC is a group of attorneys that pursues claims for Social Security Disability benefits on behalf of its clients against the Social Security Administration. SSDA, LLC is in no way a part of the Social Security Administration. Further, the information on this blog is for general information purposes only. Nothing herein should be taken as legal advice. This information is not intended to create, and receipt or viewing does not constitute, a representative-client relationship.

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