Yes, you are eligible for disability benefits for thyroid disorders if it has made a significant impact on a person’s quality of life and ability to work. Many individuals with thyroid conditions struggle to maintain employment due to the disabling symptoms they experience. 

If you are facing challenges in your day-to-day life and wondering if you can get Social Security disability benefits for thyroid, this blog will provide you with valuable insights and guidance.

Is Thyroid A Disability?

Thyroid disorders can be considered disabilities if they meet the criteria established by the Social Security Administration (SSA) in the Blue Book. To determine if your thyroid condition qualifies as a disability, it is essential to understand what thyroid disorders entail and how they affect your ability to engage in substantial gainful activity.

The thyroid gland, located in the front of the neck, plays a crucial role in regulating various bodily functions. When the thyroid gland fails to produce enough hormones (hypothyroidism) or produces an excess of hormones (hyperthyroidism), it can lead to a range of health issues.

What Is Thyroid?

The thyroid is a small butterfly-shaped gland located in the neck region. It plays a crucial role in regulating various bodily functions, including metabolism, growth, and development.

The thyroid gland produces hormones that are responsible for controlling the rate at which your body uses energy. These hormones, known as thyroxine (T4) and triiodothyronine (T3), are released into the bloodstream and affect almost every cell in your body.

When the thyroid gland does not function properly, it can result in overactive or underactive thyroid conditions, known as hyperthyroidism and hypothyroidism, respectively. 

Common Types of Thyroid Disorders

Hypothyroidism is characterized by symptoms such as fatigue, obesity, depression, anxiety and sensitivity to cold. These symptoms can significantly impact a person’s ability to perform daily activities and maintain employment. Simple tasks like getting out of bed, concentrating on work, or even engaging in social interactions can become challenging for individuals with severe hypothyroidism.

On the other hand, hyperthyroidism can cause symptoms like weight loss, rapid heartbeat, anxiety, and irritability. These symptoms can also interfere with a person’s ability to work and carry out normal daily activities. The constant feeling of restlessness and the physical strain caused by hyperthyroidism can make it difficult for individuals to maintain employment and participate in social activities.

Symptoms of Thyroid

When the thyroid gland fails to function properly, it can lead to a range of symptoms that can significantly impair an individual’s ability to perform daily activities. Common symptoms of thyroid disorders include 

  • Fatigue
  • Weight gain or loss
  • Muscle weakness
  • Mood swings
  • Difficulty concentrating

These symptoms can vary in severity from person to person, and their impact on daily functioning is a key factor in determining eligibility for disability benefits.

Eligibility Criteria For Disability Benefits with Thyroid Disorders

Obtaining disability benefits for thyroid disorders typically involves meeting the eligibility criteria set by the Social Security Administration (SSA). 

The SSA evaluates thyroid-related impairments based on the severity of symptoms, the impact on daily functioning, and the ability to engage in substantial gainful activity. Meeting specific medical requirements and providing adequate evidence of the disabling nature of your thyroid condition is vital for a successful disability claim.

In addition to medical evidence, the SSA will also consider the impact of your thyroid disorder on your ability to engage in substantial gainful activity (SGA). SGA refers to the ability to perform work that earns a certain level of income, which is adjusted annually. If your thyroid disorder prevents you from earning a substantial income due to its disabling effects, you may meet this aspect of the eligibility criteria.

Role Of Medical Evidence in Thyroid Disability Benefit Claims

Medical evidence plays a critical role in disability benefit claims for thyroid disorders. Types of medical evidence that are essential for supporting your claim are as follows: 

  • Diagnostic test results
  • Treatment records
  • Healthcare provider opinions

What If You Meet The Eligibility Criteria Of The SSA?

If your thyroid disorder meets the SSA’s criteria for disability, you may be eligible for benefits such as Social Security Disability Insurance (SSDI) or Supplemental Security Income (SSI). These benefits can provide financial assistance and access to necessary medical care for individuals who are unable to work due to their thyroid condition.

It is important to consult with a qualified healthcare professional and gather all necessary medical documentation to support your disability claim. Working with an experienced disability attorney can also be beneficial in navigating the complex process of applying for disability benefits. (Learn more on How to find a good disability lawyer?)

What If You Do Not Meet The Thyroid Eligibility Criteria Mentioned In The Blue Book of The SSA?

If you do not meet the specific eligibility criteria outlined by the Social Security Administration (SSA) for thyroid disorders, it does not necessarily mean that you cannot receive disability benefits. The SSA’s criteria are specific, and meeting them can facilitate the approval process, but there are other avenues to pursue if your case does not fit the exact criteria. Some steps to consider are as follows:

  • Consultation with Healthcare Professionals: If you haven’t already, consult with your healthcare professionals, including specialists like endocrinologists, to thoroughly document your thyroid disorder and its impact on your ability to work. Comprehensive and up-to-date medical records are crucial for your case.
  • Functional Limitations: Clearly articulate and document how your thyroid disorder affects your daily activities and your ability to work. This includes detailing any physical or mental limitations, such as fatigue, cognitive impairment, or difficulties with concentration.
  • Residual Functional Capacity (RFC) Assessment: If you haven’t already, ask your healthcare providers to conduct a Residual Functional Capacity (RFC) assessment. This assessment evaluates your ability to perform work-related activities despite your impairments. A detailed RFC can be crucial in demonstrating the extent of your limitations.
  • Consider Comorbid Conditions: If you have other health conditions or disabilities in addition to your thyroid disorder, make sure to document these as well. The cumulative effect of multiple impairments can strengthen your case.
  • Appeal Process: The appeals process typically involves several stages, including a reconsideration, a hearing before an administrative law judge, and further appeals if necessary. Presenting a thorough and well-documented case at each stage is essential.

Disability Benefits Denied? Contact An Attorney

If your initial application is denied, you have the right to appeal the decision. Many individuals find it beneficial to seek legal representation at this stage. A Social Security Disability Lawyer can help navigate the appeals process, gather additional evidence, and present a strong case on your behalf.

Disability Conditions That May Qualify For Benefits

Blindness Brain Tumor AFIB Autism
BPD Cancer Narcolepsy PTSD
Vertigo Schizophrenia Seizure Dyslexia
Celiac Disease Anxiety Depression ADHD
Agoraphobia Alopecia Asthma Bipolar
Breast Cancer Dementia Dysautonomia Epilepsy
Fibromyalgia Hearing Loss lupus POTS
Scoliosis Sleep Apnea Diabetes