If you suffer from rheumatoid arthritis, then you know about pain and discomfort. You may qualify for Social Security Disability benefits (SSD) or Supplemental Security Income (SSI) if symptoms from your rheumatoid arthritis are severe enough that you are unable to work full-time on a continuing basis.
Rheumatoid arthritis is a physical disability. It causes chronic inflammation that affects not only the joints (hands, feet, knees, ankles, hips, shoulders) but also the body’s organs, including the eyes, lungs, skin, and heart and blood vessels. Doctors consider it an autoimmune disorder because it occurs when your immunte system attacks your body’s own tissues.
Rheumatoid arthritis is not the same as osteoarthritis. It affects your joints inner lining, which can cause swelling and result in bone loss and joint deformity.
If you have severe rheumatoid arthritis that prevents you from working, you may qualify for SSD. These benefits are important – they can help you weather the financial storm caused by your inability to work due to pain, inflammation, and limited range of motion.
Unfortunately the Social Security Administration (SSA) denies many initial applications for SSD and SSI. We have noticed an increase in the number of denials over the past few years, presumably because of political pressure to deny claims. Many of those denied at the initial and reconsideration levels should have been awarded.