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Substance Abuse and Mental Health
Posted in: Conditions/Illness on August 25th, 2011

mental healthIn the event that you are applying for Social Security Disability Insurance or Supplemental Security Income and have a history of drug or alcohol abuse, it is very important to check your medical records before filing for either one of these.  It is somewhat common for applicants to either Social Security Disability Insurance or Supplemental Security Income to be denied for issues related to current or past substance abuse, particularly related to mental health.  Follow this advice in order to navigate this complex area of disability law.

Review, Review, Review

One of the most important things that you can do before applying for either Social Security Disability Insurance or Supplemental Security Income is review your medical documents.  This is true especially if you have a history of substance abuse – even in the event that you no longer use alcohol or drugs, your physician may have marked “suspected substance abuse” in one of your files at some point.  Particularly if you are applying for a mental health disability, having current suspected drug or alcohol use can seriously affect your chances of receiving disability benefits.

If you find that you have a physician note saying that they suspect you may be abusing alcohol or drugs when you have not, be sure to go in and speak with them directly.  If you have not used drugs or alcohol, it might be prudent to volunteer to be tested for drug or alcohol presence so you can erase the “suspected substance abuse” mark from your records and have a better chance of getting approved.


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