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Is Insomnia A Disability?

  • Published: November 25, 2019

Sleep is as vital to life as eating or breathing. If you are unable to sleep, you may find it difficult to complete everyday tasks of your life. You may wonder, “Is insomnia a disability?” Whether you can get disability benefits for insomnia and other sleep disorders depends on the severity and your ability to complete the duties of your job. Continue reading to learn more. To find out about your specific condition, contact CJ Hendry Law Firm, PLLC.


Insomnia is a common sleep disorder that affects as many as 60 percent of adults at least one night per week. Common symptoms include trouble going to sleep and waking up before it is time for you to awake. In many situations, the cause of insomnia is unknown. However, stress and other underlying conditions can have an impact. Treatment for insomnia may include sleeping pills and behavior therapy. Good sleep habits are important, and a bedtime routine may be recommended.


Insomnia can leave you constantly tired and unable to focus on your work. You may lack mental acuity or sharpness and be unable to concentrate on tasks. You may be unable to complete tasks in a timely manner or efficiently. If you nod off at work, you can present a safety hazard as well.


Insomnia, sleep apnea, and other sleep problems may be diagnosed by a primary care physician or a sleep specialist. Such a diagnosis may explain why your sleep is impaired, but it will not describe the interruption or lack of sleep. You may have the following symptoms that impact you while awake:

  • Not feeling refreshed in the morning
  • Lethargic for a time after you wake up
  • Nodding off or feeling sleepy throughout the day
  • Your mind may wander due to fatigue
  • Feeling the overwhelming need to nap during the day
  • Inability to concentrate
  • Worsening vision during the day
  • Needing multiple cups of coffee to “get going” in the morning
  • Experiencing headaches or migraines

All of these problems can affect your work performance, especially when they are added to other physical and mental limitations. So, when wondering, “is insomnia a disability,” know that insomnia and other sleep problems often contribute to a disability diagnosis.


You do not have to have a diagnosis of sleep apnea, insomnia, or another sleep disorder to account for your lack of sleep. Often, pain, vertigo, or other symptoms related to another disability can impact sleep.

While a sleep disorder, such as insomnia, can create symptoms during the day, chronic pain or other conditions can impact your night. Inability to sleep for any reason can greatly affect your ability to work.


You should tell your doctor about all of your symptoms, especially if they impact your sleep. You may or may not be prescribed medication to help you sleep. It’s important that you get information about your sleep condition into your doctor’s office notes. This will help document your sleep problems for the LTD insurance company.

You may also keep a disability journal, or sleep journal, to record any issues you have. Write down the time that you lay down at night, your nightly routine, any medications you take, and how long it takes you to fall asleep. You should write in your journal right before you go to bed and immediately when you wake up in the morning. In the morning, you should record how you feel and whether you were able to sleep well.

You may also be referred to a sleep study where you will be observed overnight while you sleep. During the sleep study, try to adhere to your normal routine and document everything that happens.


Insomnia and other sleep disorders can be disabilities for the purposes of LTD benefits if they prevent you from doing your work tasks. You will have to file a claim form with your insurance company in order to begin the process of filing for disability benefits. The claim form will ask you for personal and medical information as well as details about your work.

You will have to provide documents from your doctors as well as anyone who can report how well you perform your work duties in light of your sleep disorders. If you have coworkers or a supervisor who is familiar with your work performance, you might include a statement from them as well.


An LTD attorney can help you understand whether your insomnia qualifies you for disability benefits. They will evaluate your case and help you apply for LTD. Call CJ Henry Law Firm, PLLC today.

Claudeth Henry

Attorney Henry is a Florida disability lawyer Florida disability lawyer uniquely suited to help you
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