Yes, PTSD is considered a permanent VA disability. The Department of Veteran Affairs recognizes post-traumatic stress disorder as a serious, life-altering mental condition and will award disability benefits to qualified veterans suffering from PTSD.
PTSD can either be short-term or chronic depending on the individual and the circumstances. If a veteran is experiencing total occupational and social impairment due to their chronic post-traumatic stress disorder, they may qualify for U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) permanent and total disability for PTSD.
The course of the illness varies. Some people recover within 6 months, while others have symptoms that last much longer. In some people, the condition becomes chronic. A doctor who has experience helping people with mental illnesses, such as a psychiatrist or psychologist, can diagnose PTSD.
If the SSA believes it is possible for you to find work despite your PTSD, they will not approve your application for benefits. But if the SSA believes your PTSD makes it impossible for you to perform any type of work you are qualified for, you may be approved for benefits.
100% PTSD Disability Rating
A 100 percent PTSD rating is often difficult to obtain from VA because it requires a veteran's symptoms to be so severe that they are totally impaired and unable to function in everyday life.
Depending on the severity, a veteran's diagnosis of PTSD is eligible for VA disability rating of 100% ($3,332.06/month), 70% ($1,529.95/month), 50% ($958.44/month), 30% ($467.39/month), 10% ($152.64/month), or 0% (no payment).
PTSD Veterans and Gun Rights
§ 922, such as that the applicant “has not been adjudicated as a mental defective or been committed to a mental institution,” but there is not a direct prohibition against firearm ownership simply on the grounds of having a mental health diagnosis.
Now, symptoms of PTSD can interfere with the individual's ability to work in numerous ways. These include memory problems, lack of concentration, poor relationships with coworkers, trouble staying awake, fear, anxiety, panic attacks, emotional outbursts while at work, flashbacks, and absenteeism.
PTSD can be considered a disability by the SSA if the criteria for Listings 12.15 or 112.15 Trauma- and stressor-related disorders are met by the applicant. If your symptoms of PTSD are so severe that you are unable to work, the SSA will consider you disabled and you will be able to get disability with PTSD.
It's normal for anyone who has endured or witnessed experiences like these to have a strong emotional response that could last for days or weeks. However, some people have a delayed and/or prolonged reaction to the traumatic event which can lead to posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD).
According to recent studies, Emotional Trauma and PTSD do cause both brain and physical damage. Neuropathologists have seen overlapping effects of physical and emotional trauma upon the brain.
PTSD disability ratings can be 10%, 30%, 50%, 70%, or 100%. Transparency about your worst symptoms is vital for your rating. VA often rates veterans by the average of their symptoms. So, if a veteran has such symptoms that fall in the 30, 50, and 70% PTSD rating ranges, they will often get a 50% PTSD rating.
For too many people living with PTSD, it is not possible to work while struggling with its symptoms and complications. Some people do continue to work and are able to function for a period of time. They may have milder symptoms or be more able to hide their negative emotions and thoughts from others.
If you have post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), you may notice that you have trouble concentrating or that you have issues with your memory, such as memory loss. In fact, memory and concentration problems are common symptoms of PTSD.
Recurrent, unwanted distressing memories of the traumatic event. Reliving the traumatic event as if it were happening again (flashbacks) Upsetting dreams or nightmares about the traumatic event. Severe emotional distress or physical reactions to something that reminds you of the traumatic event.
Brain regions that are felt to play an important role in PTSD include hippocampus, amygdala, and medial prefrontal cortex. Cortisol and norepinephrine are two neurochemical systems that are critical in the stress response (Figure 1.)
PTSD symptoms can include intrusion symptoms, persistent avoidance, negative alterations in cognitions and moods and alterations in arousal and reactivity. They can also include brain fog. One of the reasons that PTSD causes brain fog is that the brain is not functioning optimally if you have PTSD.
To diagnose post-traumatic stress disorder, your doctor will likely: Perform a physical exam to check for medical problems that may be causing your symptoms. Do a psychological evaluation that includes a discussion of your signs and symptoms and the event or events that led up to them.
VA is required to send you advance notice of the need for a re-examination. It is very important for you to show up for this examination. If you fail to attend, and do not call to reschedule or explain why you are unable to make it, then it is likely that VA will reduce or terminate your disability benefits.
What is the VA 55-year-old rule? Veterans who receive VA disability benefits for service-connected conditions are exempt from periodic future examinations once they turn 55 years old. This includes veterans who will be 55 by the date of a future examination, according to the VA Adjudication Procedures Manual.
Although the terms “Permanent” and “Total” are often discussed together, it is possible to have a permanent disability that is not totally disabling. For example, a veteran may have a permanent disability (such as PTSD) at 70%, but the PTSD is not “total” because it is less than 100%.
No matter where you fall on this scale, veterans can still legally work, even full-time, even at a 100 percent disability rating (single or combined). However, to collect TDIU benefits, veterans must show that their service-connected disability renders them unable to maintain “substantially gainful employment.”