Are you having intense and disturbing thoughts related to your past traumatic events such as a horrific incident or a road accident? Then you might have a psychiatric disorder called Post- traumatic stress disorder (PTSD). You may relive these events through nightmares or flashbacks, making you feel sadness, fear, and anger. The effects of PTSD can be debilitating and far-reaching. They can negatively influence your physical health, mental health, work, and even mess with your day-to-day life. Besides feeling isolated, you may have trouble trusting other people and expressing your emotions.

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Understanding what you’re going through and learning how to cope with it can offer a sense of hope, renewal, and control over your life.

Here are some interesting facts about living with PTSD that you may or may not have read about. 

1. What Qualifies You as Having PTSD?

Although everyone’s experience is different, some common signs show that you have PSTD. Such common signs are mentioned below:

  • Intrusive thoughts or images
  • Nightmares
  • Physical sensations like sweating, trembling, nausea, or pain
  • Vivid flashbacks
  • Intense distress at symbolic or real reminders of the trauma

2. Is PTSD a Disability?

Many people with PTSD often wonder, “Is PTSD classed as a disability?” This isn’t a straightforward yes or no question. Generally, PTSD isn’t a disability, but it can cause partial or complete disability.

So, when is PTSD a disability?

If you’re experiencing severe symptoms of PTSD that affect your ability to function at your workplace or in society effectively, then that would be considered a disability.

ptsd disability

5 Signs of Post- Traumatic Stress Disorder

3. Is PTSD a Disability Under Social Security?

“Is PTSD a disability for social security?” This is surely one of the most commonly asked questions among people with PTSD. Well, this condition can be considered a disability under social security.

However, the Social Security Administration (SSA) will have to check your medical records to determine whether you’re disabled or not. Here, you must satisfy the requirements on their new disability listing for PTSD. Ensure that you have medically documented evidence of the following:

  • Exposure to death, serious injury, or violence
  • Disturbance in mood and behavior
  • Intrusive memories, [1*] dreams, or flashbacks
  • Exaggerated startle response

Besides proving the above, you must show that you’re having difficulty performing specific tasks like managing yourself and interacting with others.

4. Is PTSD a Disability Under the Equality Act?

The Equality Act is the law that can shield you from discrimination. Plus, it gives you the right to challenge it. It can only protect you if you have certain characteristics such as a mental health problem.

For a mental health issue to be called a disability, it should have a long-term effect on your regular activities. Meaning a mental health issue that can last up to 12 months. Unfortunately, PTSD isn’t among the recognized conditions in the act.

5. Is PTSD a Disability for a Service Dog?

For those asking, “Is PTSD considered a disability for a service dog?” You’ll be glad to know that nothing is stopping you from getting one. Service dogs receive special training to assist people with mental illnesses. These include:

  • Depression
  • Anxiety
  • Bipolar disorder
  • PTSD

In addition to helping you retrieve medication, service dogs provide companionship, calm anxiety, and offer a sense of safety only by their presence.

6. Is PTSD a Disability for Veterans?

Yes, it’s also a disability for veterans. Furthermore, veterans who have post-traumatic stress disorder due to military service might benefit from the compensations available for them. Keep in mind that the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) has unique rules and regulations applicable to these claims.

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The number of benefits you receive depends on how serious VA believes your condition is. Some of the requirements that you must meet to qualify for VA disability benefits include:

  • Your symptoms must associate with an event that occurred while performing your military duties
  • Have documented medical evidence
  • Have a diagnosis of PTSD

7. Is PTSD a Schedule A Disability?

Schedule A is a unique appointing authority that federal companies use to non-competitively appoint individuals with a severe psychiatric, intellectual or physical disability. If you’ve got severe PTSD symptoms, you can apply for a job using this hiring authority.

To be eligible for consideration, you must present a letter of proof of disability. Remember, federal agencies appoint people using many ways, so applying using schedule A doesn’t guarantee you a job.

8. Is PTSD a Disability Centrelink?

Centrelink may offer you financial support if you have a permanent psychiatric health condition, a physical or intellectual condition that hinders you from performing your duties at work. Keep in mind that not everyone struggling with a medical or disability condition can receive the Disability Support Pension (DSP). Centrelink might approve your application if you:

  • Meet residency requirements
  • Have a permanent disability or medical condition
  • Meet income and assets tests
  • Receive VA pension because of total and permanent incapacity

9. Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder and Cognitive Disability

Also known as intellectual disability, cognitive disability describes someone who has difficulty performing mental tasks than an average person. It’s by far one of the most common types of disabilities.

Most cognitive disabilities are rooted in physiology and biology. On the other hand, PTSD is a psychiatric syndrome that occurs after exposure to life-threatening events.

       1. So, is PTSD a Cognitive Disability?

The mental trauma’s emotional experience can lead to long-term cognitive effects. Most PTSD symptoms involve changes to cognitive processes like attention, planning, memory, and problem-solving.

Because of symptoms such as confusion, memory loss, and impaired judgment, PTSD can be classified as a Cognitive Disability.

is ptsd a disability

WHO on PTSD Due to War Exposure

       2. Is PTSD a Developmental Disability?

Typically, developmental incapacities are severe and long-term issues. They can be mental disabilities such as learning disabilities and physical disabilities like blindness.

Unlike PTSD, developmental disabilities are disorders that are often present at birth. They can negatively impact the trajectory of someone’s intellectual, physical or emotional development.

Cases of development disability include brain injury, autism, fetal alcohol syndrome, and behavior disorder. Remember, PTSD is common in individuals with developmental disabilities, but you can’t categorize it as a developmental disability.

       3. Is Developmental Trauma a Disability?

Also known as reactive attachment disorder, development trauma (DT) can manifest in various ways — oppositional defiant disorder, emotional disorders, sensory processing disorder, and more. DT is primarily used to describe child trauma like neglect, chronic abuse, or other harsh conditions in their homes.

When you expose a kid to stress, they experience developmental trauma. Such children are at a greater risk of developing complex emotional, physical, and cognitive illnesses. This condition isn’t a disability because it doesn’t limit the child’s movement or activities.

       4. Are Depression and PTSD a Disability?

According to the ‘Americans with Disabilities Act’ (ADA), depression is a psychiatric disability. It’s a mood disorder that can interfere with your daily activities.

Both depression and PTSD can significantly mess with your lifestyle under certain conditions. That’s why they’re called disabilities.

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       5. Is PTSD a Permanent Disability?

Even without treatment, PTSD doesn’t last throughout your life. Sometimes, the effects may disappear after a few months. They can also take years, but they’ll eventually go away.

Most people who have PTSD will slowly get better with time. However, there’s no sure way of telling whether or not you can heal without treatment. That’s why it’s always best to seek medical advice.

       6. Is PTSD Considered a Mental Disability?

Researchers argue that it’s essential to view post- traumatic stress disorder as a mental injury, not a mental disability. This is because symptoms of PTSD are just a natural reaction to a stressful event where you may have felt afraid, overwhelmed, or helpless.

       7. Is PTSD a Disability Under ADA?

You should know that the ADA isn’t limited to a specific list of conditions that constitute disabilities. Instead, it has a general definition that each person with a medical condition must meet to be categorized as a disability.

According to ADA, a person has a disability if he/she has a mental or physical impairment that significantly limits major life activities. When you look at PTSD symptoms, you’ll come to realize that they affect major life events such as concentrating, thinking, learning, and reading.

Since all these effects appear in the ADA definitions of disability, it’s clear that ADA recognizes PTSD as a disability.

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Getting Professional Help

Now that you know what PTSD is, you can learn practical coping skills to manage this condition. But, it’s crucial to also reach out to a qualified professional who can propel you toward healing and recovery.

At EZCare Clinic, we’ve got comprehensive diagnostic evaluations that help us understand precisely how to deal with specific medical conditions. Book an appointment today to get started on your treatment journey.


+1 sources
  1. Understanding and Treating Unwanted Trauma Memories in Posttraumatic Stress Disorder. (2010)
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