If you are like many in New Jersey who struggle with an eating disorder, it affects every area of your life. Not only does your health suffer, but your condition impacts your family, your social life and your ability to work a steady job. Seeking treatment is expensive, and the most effective treatment involves an intense and systematic confronting of the many physical, psychological and emotional issues involved. Holding a job while undergoing this treatment may be next to impossible.

Unfortunately, as debilitating as an eating disorder can be, the Social Security Administration lists none of the common eating disorders as qualifying conditions for disability insurance benefits. Since the most appropriate and complete therapy possible is essential for making a full recovery, you may find it helpful to have a legal advocate assisting you in finding the best way to seek SSDI.

Eating disorders are not recognized by Social Security

To qualify for SSDI, you must have an illness or medical condition that will last at least one year and will prevent you from working. Since treatment for an eating disorder is often extensive, involving behavioral modification, psychotherapy for both you and your family, medical treatment, medication, nutritional counseling, and social reintroduction, you can expect it to take as long as you need. If the disorder has brought you to a medical crisis, you may not even be able to begin therapy until doctors have stabilized you.

Seeking SSDI may be critical to pay for your treatment as well as your daily living. Since the SSA’s list of approved conditions does not include eating disorders, you may qualify by applying based some your symptoms, for example, any of the following:

  • Weight loss because of a disorder in your digestive system
  • Bleeding in your gastrointestinal tract
  • Arrhythmia
  • Heart failure
  • Anemia
  • Disorders in your endocrine

Filing for Social Security benefits is a challenge even for those who have qualifying conditions. For you to qualify with an eating disorder, you will have to submit extensive documentation of your illness, the physical and mental toll it takes on your personal life, and mostly how the symptoms and side effect of your eating disorder interfere with your ability to remain gainfully employed.

Finding a medical equivalent to your eating disorder among the many qualifying conditions may be a challenge, but with the right legal counsel, you may be successful in your efforts to obtain SSDI benefits and seek the treatment you need to recover and grow strong again.