Articles Posted in Substance Abuse

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Social Security disability benefits may be available for persons who struggle with abuse or addiction. However, the benefits are not paid out based on the abuse or addiction, but based on the medical impairment or disability brought out by the abuse.

For many persons who struggle with substance abuse or addiction, making the decision to get help can be difficult. Many persons do not seek the help they require for many factors. A person may feel ashamed to seek help for a condition he feels he has no control over, and in other cases, may feel ashamed to reveal the condition to his family and friends.

Another major barrier to seeking treatment is the cost involved. Many persons lack insurance which can help them with the costs of rehab.

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Drug and alcohol addiction may leave a person with several impairments that make it impossible for him to work or earn a living. However, this fact, by itself does not qualify a person for Social Security disability befits.

There are a number of impairments that can be caused due to drug or alcohol addiction. For example, alcohol addiction can result in possibly debilitating liver disease, while excessive smoking is linked to several forms of cancer, including lung and throat cancer. While determining an individual’s eligibility for disability benefits, the Social Security Administration takes into consideration if the addiction is a material factor in the impairment. This means that the agency will review if the person meets the criteria of the disability, even in the absence of the addiction.

Another thing to keep in mind is that addiction by itself does not qualify as an impairment qualifying for benefits. An individual’s drug addiction may lead to blackouts, extreme confusion, disorientation and any number of other disabling symptoms, but these on their own will not qualify the person for benefits.   In making a determination, the agency will also consider if the disabling symptoms would disappear if the person stopped his abuse.

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Georgia has a huge substance abuse problem, and it destroys thousands of lives every year. Each year, more than a million residents across Georgia have a drug and alcohol abuse problem. That’s close to 12% of the state’s population. A further 377,000 or 3.5% of the population abuse alcohol.  Many of these cases lead to permanent disability or even death. Some counties are even more severely affected by the substance abuse issue than others.  Between 2008 and 2017, Savannah accounted for the highest drug and alcohol-related fatalities at a staggering 12.55%.

Substance abuse is a treatable addiction. If your loved one suffers from an addiction, there is no reason to give up on hope. There are resources to help locate rehabilitation and other facilities close to you, so your loved open can get started on the road to recovery.  This resource can help you locate the best drug and alcohol rehab facility for your specific situation, anywhere in Georgia. The website includes details on the highest-rated, low-cost facilities in the state. Often, the cost of treatment facilities prevents metro Atlanta residents from seeking the help they need. This resource helps you to identify the best rehab facilities, as well as long term and short term facilities, and inpatient and outpatient patient programs. While some programs offer drug and alcohol detox, others offer more intensive programs for drug abuse.

In 2017, the Social Security Administration (SSA) removed substance addiction as a listing for disability benefits. However, if your loved one has suffered severe damage as a result of his addiction, like brain or liver damage, pancreatitis, seizures, or depression, he or she may qualify for Social Security disability benefits.