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Can I Continue Working with a Herniated Disc?

Social Security Disability for Herniated Discs

If you have been diagnosed with a herniated disc, you may suffer severe pain and limitations that impact your daily activities as well as your ability to work. Sometimes called a ruptured disc, a herniated disc is caused from the cushioning material being pressed out of its position from in between the two vertebrae that permits irritations of the nerves letting them get pinched near the discs, causing compression and irritation.

Herniated discs can result from the gradual deterioration from repetitive spine stress or something sudden like an accident. The symptoms resulting from a herniated disc can have a major impact on your life because of the severe pain, numbness and tingling, and negative effects on your mobility.

Impacting Your Ability to Work

Because of the severity of the pain caused by herniated discs, it can have a major impact on your ability to work. Herniated discs can cause debilitating pain that radiates down the legs. Because of the severity of the severity of the pain, your mobility can be impacted and you may not be able to stand or sit in the same position for long periods.

The numbness and tingling can impact your ability to function as well. You may find it difficult to do your regular tasks, such as bathing or dressing yourself because of the severity of the symptoms. You may require a cane or walker to be mobile or a wheelchair may be necessary.

Because of the severity of the pain, you may be prescribed narcotics. These have side effects that include drowsiness, dizziness, and the inability to drive or operate machinery. Intensive physical therapy and rehabilitation may also be necessary. Surgery may be required, but it is not always effective in resolving the issue and you may still suffer from debilitating pain, tingling, and numbness. All of these symptoms can keep you from lifting, carrying, bending, and standing. Because of the major impacts on your mobility, you are very limited in your functioning and your entire life is altered because of the injury.

Your Herniated Disc may qualify you for disability benefits

Limitations for Specific Jobs

If you are suffering from herniated discs, you will not be able to perform manufacturing or construction jobs that involve lifting, carrying, and bodily labor because of the pain experienced. You can’t operate heavy equipment or machinery because your pain medication may cause drowsiness and dizziness that impacts your ability to act in time to prevent an accident.

You may be unable to perform light-duty or sedentary work because of the pain and numbness you experience in your back and legs while sitting. The pain can also radiate into your arms and hands limiting your ability to write or performing fingering tasks.

You wouldn’t be able to be a commercial driver because of the pain experienced and because of the impact of the pain medications on your functioning. Because of your disability, you wouldn’t be able to work as a firefighter or police officer because your condition will inhibit your ability to perform your job requirements.

Jobs such as reporters are impossible because of the walking, standing, and driving required to gather the stories and then your medication may make it impossible for you to drive. So because of your condition and its treatment, you can be unable to perform any kind of work, thus you are rendered disabled because of the herniated discs.

Applying for Benefits

If you are ready to apply for Social Security disability benefits, you have several different ways to start the process. You can begin the application by going online to the SSA website at www.ssa.gov or by calling the SSA at 1-800-772-1213. You can get the process started in person at your nearest SSA office. You need to provide detailed medical records and as much documentation as possible to support your claim.

The process is very complicated and requires thorough answers, so if you are represented by a disability attorney, you are much more likely to have your claim approved. Your claim can be denied twice, but those decisions can be appealed. The final step is a hearing before an administrative law judge who will rule on your case and decide if you are eligible for benefits.