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Tips for Testifying About Your Mental Impairment

  • Published: June 12, 2014

Disability claims involving mental disabilities open up a set of questions that do not necessarily apply to claims about physical impairments. When your Social Security disability law office in Ocala is preparing you to testify at your disability hearing, you should consider your symptoms and how you will answer questions about them.

The purpose of the hearing is for the judge to get a good evaluation of whether you qualify for disability benefits. Ask your Ocala Social Security disability attorney for guidance as to how you should discuss your mental disability.

Dealing With Stress

Many disability claimants name stress as something that makes it difficult for them to hold down any work. The judge might ask you questions about how you handle stress and what sorts of situations trigger your stress response. Your Social Security disability law office in Ocala will have seen clients who react to stress in different ways: panicky feeling, fight-or-flight response, trembling and shaking or even chest pain and shortness of breath. For some claimants, the symptoms are even more severe; they might experience choking, feeling faint, nausea or stomach ache, chills or hallucinations. In extreme cases, claimants with mental disorders might feel a fear of dying or experience a panic attack when faced with stressful situations.

Don’t Stress Out About Work

The judge might ask you to answer questions about work requirements and duties that you might expect to encounter in a normal job. If you claim that stress aggravates your mental impairment, you and your Ocala Social Security disability attorney should discuss how to describe your ability to fulfill work requirements. Are you stressed out by having to work within a set schedule and complete tasks on time? Working with other people cooperatively? Can you handle criticism from supervisors? Do you have a significant fear of failure at work? Does simply knowing that your work is being supervised make you stressed out about going to work? These are concerns you should think about when preparing your case.

Claudeth Henry

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