The Difficulties of Defining Mental Illness, from the National Benefit Authority

People who suffer from mental illness are entitled to disability benefits just the same as people who suffer from more “traditional” physical disabilities, but as the experts at The National Benefit Authority see on a regular basis, defining mental illness can be difficult. Unfortunately, there is still a stigma attached to mental illness not found with physical disabilities. Great strides have been made to increase awareness and understanding of mental illness but these stigmas still remain, making it difficult for mentally ill persons and their loved ones to get the help they need.

Defining mental illness is already hard enough, but defining it in the context of applying for disability benefits is even more challenging. The term “mental illness” describes a very broad category that includes everything from mild behavioral patterns to extreme psychological disorders. Any mental disorder that causes stress to the afflicted individual and hinders that individual from living a normal life can be categorized under the term “mental illness.” Some of the most common mental disorders include the following:

  • Anxiety
  • GAD (generalized anxiety disorder)
  • Panic Disorder
  • PTSD (post traumatic stress disorder)

Millions of people suffer from these illnesses and need help, but they are often unable or unwilling to seek the help that is available to them. Some mental illnesses are more serious than others, but most people who are afflicted by these illnesses share one thing in common – they want to cover up what is afflicting them. However, to get the help that is available from the government and its various programs, one must be very open and willing to talk about their mental disorder(s) to a wide variety of different people, usually strangers.

Defining Mental Illness to Apply for Disability Benefits

If you or a loved one has a mental illness, you may qualify for disability benefits from the government. From grants to tax credits, these benefits can be hugely beneficial in dealing with the disability in question, but they require a willingness to talk about the disability throughout a lengthy application process. Claiming disability benefits is not easy, especially when you are concerned about the stigma associated with your disability. This is why organizations like The National Benefit Authority exist – to help disabled persons get the assistance they deserve that is available from the government. The first step is defining the disability and asking for help.


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17 Responses to The Difficulties of Defining Mental Illness, from the National Benefit Authority

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