Receiving Social Security Disability requires navigating several important steps. The foundation of a successful application involves the presence of a chronic medical condition.
Understanding what constitutes a chronic condition can help applicants know when filing for SSD benefits makes sense.
The definition of a chronic condition
According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, a chronic disease typically lasts for more than a year and requires ongoing medical attention. It limits a person’s ability to engage in daily activities and often prevents that individual from going to work every day. This can result in a reduction of quality of life as well as a loss of financial independence.
While many medical conditions become chronic, heart disease, cancer and diabetes often play a large role in serious illnesses. Several other conditions lead to significant disability among patients:
- Lung disease
- Kidney disease
- Traumatic injury
- Alzheimer’s disease
Many other conditions qualify as chronic. Only a medical diagnosis by professionals can establish a condition that qualifies for SSD benefits.
The risk factors for some conditions
While many chronic conditions come about through unavoidable circumstances, others have risk factors that make them more likely to occur. Poor nutrition and inadequate diets can impact a person’s heart and lead to high blood pressure and cardiac arrest. Tobacco use and exposure to other smoke sources can lead to compromised lung function.
Physical inactivity can lead to obesity which increases an individual’s risk for heart disease and diabetes. Excessive alcohol use has implications for several long-term illnesses. No matter the origin, a chronic medical condition could qualify a person for SSD benefits.