September is Pain Awareness Month.
Belleville, Ill. – September 06, 2013. About 100 million adult Americans experience chronic pain every year, according to the Institute of Medicine. The Invisible Disabilities Association (IDA) and Allsup, a nationwide provider of Social Security Disability Insurance (SSDI) representation and VA disability appeals, are observing Pain Awareness Month in September. Their goal is to raise awareness of common—yet often invisible—painful conditions and offer support and resources to those living with chronic pain.
According to the American Academy of Pain Management, the most common chronic pain complaints include headache, low back pain, cancer pain, arthritis pain and neurogenic pain. Neurogenic pain results from peripheral nerve or central nervous system damage. This can happen after a bout with shingles, during a stroke, through trauma (especially of the spinal cord), or from a chronic degenerative condition such as multiple sclerosis.
Many of these conditions are disabling. Arthritis, for example, is the most frequent cause of disability in the U.S., according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. It affects the quality of life for about 50 million adults. Forty percent of adults with arthritis are limited in their usual activities and 33 percent report severe pain.
Conditions like arthritis, neuropathy and complex regional pain syndrome are often invisible, making it difficult for others to understand the toll they take on the individual.
The Invisible Disabilities Association offers support to those living with chronic pain.
“Loved ones often have a hard time understanding how symptoms such as extreme fatigue and pain can be debilitating,” said IDA Founder and President Wayne Connell. “The invisible nature of chronic pain creates an atmosphere of suspicion or disbelief, even by those who are closest to you. It can be a very lonely experience.”
Pain Awareness Month reminds people living with chronic pain that they are not alone. “IDA is one of many organizations offering support and resources to people in pain, helping them connect with others and providing services designed to improve their quality of life,” said Connell.
A list of organizations and pain management resources is available at resources.allsup.com.
SSDI is an important resource. Individuals who cannot continue working due to chronic pain may be eligible for Social Security Disability Insurance (SSDI) benefits. SSDI is a federally mandated disability insurance program employers and employees pay for through payroll (FICA) taxes. SSDI provides monthly benefits to individuals under full retirement age who can no longer work because of a severe disability. They qualify for Medicare 24 months after their SSDI eligibility date.
SSDI is a valuable resource for disabled workers. However, obtaining SSDI benefits is not easy. More than two-thirds of initial applications are denied. The process can be more difficult for those living with chronic pain, due to its subjective nature. The SSA is required to consider the effects of chronic pain and the medications prescribed to treat it, but there must also be sufficient medical evidence documenting the underlying medically determinable severe impairment. Evidence of ongoing pain management treatment would add further weight and credibility to an individual’s pain complaint(s).
To learn more and to see if you are eligible for SSDI, call the Allsup Disability Evaluation Center at (888) 841-2126 or visit Expert.Allsup.com for a free SSDI evaluation.
About the Invisible Disabilities Association
The Invisible Disabilities Association encourages, educates and connects people and organizations touched by illness, pain and disability around the globe. IDA was founded in 1997 and incorporated in 2004 as a 501(c)(3) non-profit. IDA’s website, publications, seminars and special events address all debilitating conditions that are often misunderstood. The IDA Annual Awards Banquet and Auction honors individuals and organizations making a difference in the lives of those living with illness, pain and disability. Visit http://invisibledisabilities.org/.
Allsup is a nationwide provider of Social Security disability, veterans disability appeal, Medicare and Medicare Secondary Payer compliance services for individuals, employers and insurance carriers. Founded in 1984, Allsup employs more than 800 professionals who deliver specialized services supporting people with disabilities and seniors so they may lead lives that are as financially secure and as healthy as possible. The company is based in Belleville, Ill., near St. Louis. For more information, Click Here. Visit Allsup on Facebook.