Mental Impairments and Psychiatric Disabilities
All veterans are at an increased risk for post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) due to their exposure to traumatic events while in service. Approximately three out of 10 combat veterans experience PTSD after returning from action, while an additional two or three percent will suffer from partial PTSD sometime in their lives.
Individuals who suffer from PTSD often suffer from additional mental disorders. These can include anxiety disorders, depression, bipolar disorder and schizophrenia. For example, many service members suffering from PTSD experience major depression as well. The compound effects of two or more such disorders can be dangerous and debilitating.
If you or a loved one is a candidate for veterans disability compensation because of PTSD or other mental health conditions, contact the Berry Law Firm for a free consultation. We represent veterans throughout the United States in VA disability claims.
Mental Impairments Claims Under Veterans Disability (VA)
We have represented many veterans who suffer from one or more of the following conditions:
- Post-traumatic stress disorder, or PTSD, refers to psychological, emotional and physical symptoms triggered by traumatic events or “stressors.” While combat-related PTSD is the most common form, many veterans develop PTSD from non-combat trauma such as assaults or training accidents. The condition affects each person differently, ranging from flashbacks, anxiety attacks and nightmares, to paranoia or feeling numb.
- Anxiety disorders can cause panic attacks, irrational fear, compulsion, obsession and an increased heart or breathing rate. These symptoms may result in difficulty concentrating, difficulty with social interactions and a need to restrict daily activities. Some individuals may be unable to function independently in any setting other than their homes.
- Clinical depression can be triggered by a traumatic event; it can also be caused by genetic or biological factors. Symptoms last for at least two weeks and include feelings of hopelessness, worthlessness, sadness, anxiety, suicidal thoughts, exhaustion, difficulty making decisions, weight changes, insomnia and sleeping too much. Individuals suffering from depression often have a lack of energy and lose interest in things they once enjoyed. Depression may cause a person to withdraw from social interactions, shutting out even family and friends.
- Bipolar disorder (formerly called manic depression) causes a person to cycle between depressive states and high states (mania). Some individuals experience both cycles simultaneously. Mania can cause euphoria, anger and impaired judgment. Symptoms of mania include sleeplessness, decreased attention span, aggressive behavior and rushed speech. In severe cases, mania may cause rage, psychotic delusions or hallucinations. The depressive state causes the same symptoms as clinical depression. People who suffer from bipolar disorder may engage in dangerous behaviors such as substance abuse, risky sexual encounters and compulsive spending. Suicidal thoughts and suicide attempts are extremely common.
- Schizophrenia can make it difficult or impossible to interact with others, or to concentrate and think coherently. A person with schizophrenia may have trouble paying attention, recalling information and making sense of information. Additional symptoms include unpredictable behavior, paranoia, delusions, hallucinations and catatonia. Schizophrenia often causes a loss of interest in activities, withdrawal from others, loss of motivation and trouble caring for oneself.
Nationwide Representation in VA Disability Claims
Our lawyers will work to prove service-connection of your illness. If the condition was caused by a traumatic event while you were in service but not initially diagnosed, you may still be eligible for benefits. For a free consultation about PTSD claims and other VA mental impairments and psychiatric disabilities, please call (888) 883-2483 or contact us online.