Older woman with SSD attorney

Early Onset Dementia and Social Security Disability

Unfortunately, the onset of dementia, including Alzheimer’s, isn’t uncommon for individuals who have reached the age of retirement. Luckily, at that point they are generally entitled to collect or may already be collecting early retirement benefits. But what about those individuals who have started showing signs of early onset dementia? Early onset dementia often includes difficulty with short-term memory such as misplacing things and forgetting them. But when these signs of the disease become more pervasive, they may severely affect normal cognitive functioning, and thus impact an individual’s ability to continue working. Can such a person apply for and receive Social Security Disability (SSD) benefits?

What is Dementia?

Dementia encompasses a group of symptoms including memory loss, unclear thinking, and a decline in one’s ability to problem solve. It is a broad term for a group of diseases. While Alzheimer’s disease is one of the more well-known diseases, dementia also includes the following:

  • Parkinson’s Disease Dementia
  • Vascular Dementia
  • Mixed Dementia
  • Huntington’s Disease
  • Frontotemporal Dementia
  • Dementia with Lewy Bodies

Prevented from Engaging in Gainful Employment

For someone to be eligible for SSD benefits, he or she must establish that they have been objectively diagnosed with a severe, disease or impairment that prevents them from engaging in gainful employment. The most difficult part of an SSD claim is proving that not only does an individual suffer from such a medical issue, but that it inhibits their ability to work. This is why it’s so important to have a medical record of your issues. 

If you are struggling with memory loss it’s generally a good idea to bring a trusted family member or friend with you to your appointment to ensure that your doctor is informed – just in case you don’t remember to talk about it. These notes are extremely important for performing all necessary tests and determining a diagnosis. 

See A Doctor

If you are having issues with memory your general physician may recommend that you see a neurologist or a neuropsychologist. If it is determined that you have dementia, there may be medications available that can sometimes help with things such as improved motivation and better memory and concentration. This sometimes helps these individuals to continue with their current employment and activities.  

By receiving treatment from a physician, it will provide you with a much better chance for approval of your SSD claim for dementia. It’s imperative though, that you continue with recommended treatment to help demonstrate that your condition is severe and disabling and prevents you from obtaining gainful employment as is required for benefits. 

The Las Vegas SSD Attorneys at Roeschke Law, LLC Can Help

If you or a loved one is struggling with a disability that prevents you from working, you may not know how to proceed. Fortunately, the attorneys at Roeschke Law, LLC can help. We understand the impact that a disability can have on your physical, emotional, and financial health. That’s why it’s our mission to help you. To learn more, or to schedule a consultation, contact us today!