The news hit hard. When San Diego radio station KFMB reported that there would be no cost of living adjustment (COLA) in 2016 for people who receive Social Security disability benefits, hearts fell. After all, many recipients struggle to meet their monthly bills as it is and they were hoping for at least a small boost in benefits.
Many of us wrongly think of Alzheimer's disease as a condition that only plagues old people. The reality is that it can strike in the prime of life. The Alzheimer's Association says that many people with early-onset Alzheimer's are in their 50s or even their 40s.
Perhaps it's because school starts up after the summer break that September is named awareness month by a number of groups devoted to raising knowledge levels on different health conditions and diseases. For instance, we're in the middle of National Atrial Fibrillation Awareness Month, Healthy Aging Month, National ITP Awareness Month (ITP is Immune Thrombocytopenia, a bleeding disorder) and Prostate Cancer Awareness Month.
If someone were to do a poll of what is most frustrating about the process of filing a Social Security Disability claim, there's a good chance that two common problems would surface near the top of the list. As many San Diego residents know, people with disabilities that prevent them from working are far too often denied legitimate claims. Their only way of getting benefits is to go through a complex appeals process.
We read newspaper and magazine articles from across the nation, as well as statements from the Social Security Administration in order to keep our San Diego readers up to date on Social Security Disability Insurance. We recently came across a letter to the editor of a Spokane, Washington, newspaper in which a reader argued that in recent years there have been "lowered standards and greatly expanded eligibility for Social Security Disability."
We typically think of Social Security Disability Insurance as the most important safety net available to disabled San Diego workers, but it is even more than that. SSDI and SSI (Supplemental Security Income) both provide needed monthly income to disabled children and to adults who have been disabled since childhood.
The countdown has begun. In a year's time, the nation's greatest safety net will run out of money enabling it to pay full benefits. Social Security Disability Insurance helps 11 million disabled workers and their dependents pay their bills.
Video games can be a fun diversion. But may some such games also be able to help with the mental/emotional health of individuals who have experienced traumatic events? A recent study looked into this and yielded results that some may find rather surprising.
Overwhelming sadness, guilt and hopelessness are all symptoms commonly experienced by individuals who struggle with depression. According to the National Alliance on Mental Illness, an estimated 16 million Americans reported experiencing "at least one major depressive episode," within the last 12 months. This serious and invisible mental health condition does not discriminate and affects individuals of all ages, genders and ethnicities and can adversely impact the lives of those who suffer with the condition firsthand as well as family members.
It's difficult to mention Social Security, in any form, without the conversation becoming a little bit heated. By it's very nature, Social Security is a divisive and difficult program. That doesn't make it any less necessary than it is. It's a very important part of our society, and despite many reports and studies that point to an impending financial disaster for the program, it is the program that we have -- and we have to work with.