Can I Continue Working After A Stroke?

According to the American Heart Association, someone dies because of a stroke every 3.70 minutes. There are 116.4 million adults in the U.S. believed to suffer from high blood pressure, which increases the risk of a stroke if it isn’t properly controlled. According to the data from 2016, about 389.4 deaths resulted daily from strokes. Depending on the severity of the stroke, different symptoms can result.

Sometimes there is non-reversible damage that affects the individual for the rest of his or her life. It can cause speech problems, difficulty walking, and lead to the loss of use of an arm or a hand. If you suffered a stroke and are unable to work, you may qualify for Social Security Disability benefits.

How A Stroke Affects Your Physical Capacity For Work

Strokes can lead to paralysis. It often affects one side of the body and can cause loss of use of an arm, hand, leg, or entire side of the body. It can affect speech, hearing and vision. Sometimes it leaves the individual with the inability to walk without the help of a medical device.

You may not be able to work considerable distances, stand for more than an hour or two, or stay in one position without frequent repositioning and moving around. Because of involvement of your hand and/or arm, you may not be able to lift, carry, reach, and grasp items. It may be impossible to write or handle fine tasks, such as fingering items or sorting documents.

If your hearing and speech have been affected, you may find communicating with coworkers and customers a challenge and talking on the phone may be impossible. Your physical impairments may make any kind of work impossible for you.


How A Stroke Affects Your Mental Capacity For Work

When you have a stroke, it affects your brain. This can affect your ability to concentrate and stay focused. It can affect your memory and your ability to recall important details. You may find yourself unable to perform routine tasks that you had previously handled on a regular basis.

You may also find yourself suffering from mental anguish, depression, and anxiety because of the stroke and the impact it has had on your life physically and mentally. This will also affect your ability to function. When you combine the physical disabilities with the mental effects of the stroke, you may find that you are unable to work at all.

Stroke and Applying for Social Security Disability

If you have suffered a stroke and you are unable to work, you many find that you are unable to work and earn a living. The SSA uses a medical guide, which is called the Blue Book, to determine if an individual qualifies for disability benefits. Strokes are reviewed under the Central Nervous System Vascular Event listing, which is under Section 11.04. Per the listing, the claimant must have their ability to write or speak severely impaired or completely lost or have pronounced issues controlling or coordinating movements of two extremities.

You can start the application online at or by calling 1-800-772-1213 and speaking with a representative or scheduling an appointment at their local SSA field office. Complete the Free Case Evaluation form to have your claim details reviewed by an attorney in your area.

Additional Resources

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