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Should depression count as a disability? watch

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    (Original post by Xopher_)
    I was claiming benefits when I was 16-17 due to having generalized anxiety disorder and depression. I dropped out of secondary school after about 3 months due to my problems, so from the age of around 12-16 I did my school work online at home. I got 0 gcses when I took them and I got pissed off about that, I felt restricted because I'm not stupid and I wanted to learn but I couldn't, so I overcame my difficulties and now I'm an apprentice
    Now that I'm older (only really changed in the last year) I can live a relatively normal life, I do however occasionally get depressed and anxious still.

    I did personally get a bit of money (including backpay) due to my illnesses, which did pay for my car insurance and fuel, but from what I went through it isn't about the money AT ALL. Getting my car also catapulted me into getting motivated, because I started college in September after ncs, and it was a lot easier being able to drive there instead of having 45 minutes of a stressful bus journey.

    Also in college, I can just go sit in the car and disconnect from the stress for a while at break time, which helps A TON. Plus if we get let out early I can just leave right away.

    I never wanted to 'sit' on benefits like some people do, I want to pay back by working now, so effectively benefits actually pushed me into getting somewhere with my life, considering it allowed me to run my car, get to college etc...

    Long story short, from me to the person reading, if you're depressed/anxious about something, don't let it control your life, you only live once, so make the most of it and go get what you want! I remember crying last April to my mum about not being able to live a normal life. I was pretty much at rock bottom and I made something out of it.

    Sorry this is long, but it's why I believe benefits should be given to people who have long term depression/anxiety.
    I actually have a really similar story to you! Forced to drop out after my first month of Alevels, my mum had to leave her job to be my carer full time and I was on suicide watch 24/7 so we would only have had my dad’s shop assistant job to support four people.

    Once I started to improve I also did an apprenticeship! Which was amazing for me and really helped me. Now i’m in a not so fun relapse but hoping that I get my brain together to start uni in September :woo:

    I agree it’s not about the money, but it sure as hell helped my family when we needed it. If depression couldn’t be a disability it would have made everything so much worse. It’s a shame people still think it’s just feeling ‘sad’, but it’s good that i’m not the only one in this corner 😊
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    depends on it's severity - severe depression is debilitating and life can't be lived to the same standard as someone without depression.
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    (Original post by cat_mac)
    I actually have a really similar story to you! Forced to drop out after my first month of Alevels, my mum had to leave her job to be my carer full time and I was on suicide watch 24/7 so we would only have had my dad’s shop assistant job to support four people.

    Once I started to improve I also did an apprenticeship! Which was amazing for me and really helped me. Now i’m in a not so fun relapse but hoping that I get my brain together to start uni in September :woo:

    I agree it’s not about the money, but it sure as hell helped my family when we needed it. If depression couldn’t be a disability it would have made everything so much worse. It’s a shame people still think it’s just feeling ‘sad’, but it’s good that i’m not the only one in this corner 😊
    Damn this is very relatable, nice to know I'm not the only one

    One thing that does annoy me is when I hear people say "Oh I'm so depressed" when something minor happens, it really pisses me off and I find it disrespectful.

    Prsom
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    (Original post by Anonymous)
    I personally have depression, and I got a scholarship because of it. Im not sure if I should be offended or not.
    Nah that's great... Don't be offended - you just applied to a caring institution which means you are smart
    (I wish it could be the same in Asia )
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    (Original post by Harjot)
    Exactly, I see depression akin to breaking your legs and needing crutches for some time. I don't believe this is classed as a disability.

    If you plan on leaving depression untreated for the remainder of your life, some of the fault must be placed on yourself.
    Depression is also an extremely encompassing term.
    Youa re either naive there or ignorant, people want help but its not given to then which then makes the problems grow so if the help finally does arrive its too little too late.

    My own mother told me her psychiatrist told her after a point it becomes uncurable instead you just learn to live with it/adapt

    When my family member died I had multiple problems at once, whispers going round it was murder and done by another family member because as benefit claimaints we were basically gangsters, I then moved to college but had a bi polar flatmate who smashed the property up, then moved another place where I had a bi polar and a schizophrenic arguing, and the one in room next to me would talk and argue with himself and smash furniture, the guy in other side of me made multiple keys so his room became a 24/7 party room as he stayed with friends or his girlfriend, shortly after my education was affected I was illegally evicted.

    Moved next to a drug dealer who did major identity theft to the point I was accused of severe benefit fraud and threatened to be brought before magistrates court, I had 8 grand taken from me likely far more in credt cards, overdrafts and another 6 grand in benefits

    At what point does that not scar you for life?!
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    If you suffer from disabling depression and it is not allowing you to work at all, you may qualify for disability benefits. To be considered for benefits with depression, there are a few criteria you must meet. There must be documentation showing that things that once were joyful activities are no longer fun or pleasurable. For example, if you find no joy in activities with your family this could be a problem. Other symptoms that need to be documented are a decrease in energy, any suicidal thoughts, paranoia, delusions, feeling of worthlessness, lack of physical movement, difficulty concentrating or thinking, poor appetite or overeating, and insomnia or oversleeping.
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    Mental health problems are covered under the equality and disability discrimination acts. That means reasonable adjustments must be made for them. The word reasonable is key there because it means a metal health issue that doesn't really affect your work has no reasonable adjustments that could be made (if it ain't broke don't fix it) while a mental health issue that does affect part of your work should be helped where possible.

    Curable but long term illnesses are covered under that too for as long as they exist. They aren't quite a disability, but are intituled to the same support.

    I think that is a good system, but MH awareness is a bit lacking so it can be difficult to get reasonable adjustments or realise you are intituled to them.
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    (Original post by drbluebox)
    Youa re either naive there or ignorant, people want help but its not given to then which then makes the problems grow so if the help finally does arrive its too little too late.
    1) I agree that mental health provisioning has a lot of catch up
    2) This is not the point of the thread

    (Original post by drbluebox)
    My own mother told me her psychiatrist told her after a point it becomes uncurable instead you just learn to live with it/adapt.
    Sure. But don't we all have to live with e.g. heartbreak for life? Or the grief of a loved one passing?

    (Original post by drbluebox)
    At what point does that not scar you for life?!
    So everyone who's scarred by the past should receive extra consideration?
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    It already does for DSA at least
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    (Original post by JanisJöro)
    Depression can be more disabling
    Those who are paralysed can still lead a normal life with the help of a wheelchair.
    People with severe clinical depression have nothing to aid them in getting out of bed and get out and about.
    Again, I don't think it's ok to compare physical disabilities with mental:

    (Original post by JanisJöro)
    Depression is caused by a chemical imbalance, nothing to do with beliefs.
    Depression can be life long.
    The chemical imbalance usually doesn't simply naturally exist, but is often triggered by circumstance.

    Whether physical disabilities heal or not is entirely up to your body (and medicine).
    Whether depression "heals" or not really the same autonomous process, and also has something to do with the individual's mind.
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    (Original post by cat_mac)
    So your brain not working right wouldn’t effect your ability to work? Loss of focus, memory problems, lack of energy and motivation is going to be a big problem in work. While someone who doesn’t have the use of their legs can have excellent brains and work without issue. Both are disabled because their impairments stop them or make it more difficult to complete daily tasks.
    I didn't suggest that. I was responding to the notion that both mental and physical impairments are as equally disabling.

    It's also important to consider the context - the amount a sports-based venture can do to reasonably support a physically disabled/impaired individual is very limited, and so in the same way, the amount an employer offering any role requiring mental robustness/ability can reasonably support is also limited (which tends to be many desk jobs, or those requiring some form of customer interaction)
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    No. I view depression as an illness, personally.
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    (Original post by Ammz_123)
    i don't see it as a illness its due to peoples own self belief and 'trapping' themsleves and they are able to get out of it. Disability is more of permanant (correct me if i wrong xd
    You have no idea what depression actually is
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    (Original post by Harjot)
    Again, I don't think it's ok to compare physical disabilities with mental:
    Why isn't it "ok"?
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    I think there are two parts to this:

    Is depression a disability? That's debatable and I have no problem with people saying it isn't a disability. In fact personally I'm not sure I would class it as a disability rather than a long term illness or something. Not every debilitating condition is a disability and that's fine as long as they are still treated appropriately.

    Should it be treated as a disability? Absolutely! It should be given the same thought as any other debilitating condition. There are a lot of potentially curable conditions that are very debilitating and loads of life long conditions that aren't so debilitating. Almost every illness works on a spectrum of severity and should be assessed by how they affect the person rather than what the condition is.
    Although depression can be cured (not necessaries in all cease) it can still be very debilitating while it's there and it should be given the same respect and consideration as other debilitating conditions for as long as it affects the person.

    As far as passing any laws go, depression and other mental health issues are already covered by the equality and disability discrimination acts (UK). Under the disability discrimination act somebody has to have a long term (lasts or is likely to last one year plus) condition that is debilitating to them (would hinder day to day activities). That condition does not have to be lifelong and dose not have to affect a person constantly (just be likely to return).
    Here's a link that explains what conditions are covered under the DD act:
    https://www.gov.uk/government/upload...definition.pdf
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    This thread man... I gotta stop reading any threads related to MIs.
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    (Original post by Sabertooth)
    Why isn't it "ok"?
    Something along the lines of:

    Treatment of depression requires some level of conscious thought and reflection, treatment of physical impairments is almost an entirely autonomous process, as the body will naturally heal (or not).

    I don't think it's ok, because it does those with mental health conditions injustice, and seeks to ask them to accept their suffering permanently. Viewing mental issues and treating them entirely the same way as physical (medicine + letting the body heal) is not usually the best course of action.
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    (Original post by Harjot)
    Something along the lines of:

    Treatment of depression requires some level of conscious thought and reflection, treatment of physical impairments is almost an entirely autonomous process, as the body will naturally heal (or not).

    I don't think it's ok, because it does those with mental health conditions injustice, and seeks to ask them to accept their suffering permanently. Viewing mental issues and treating them entirely the same way as physical (medicine + letting the body heal) is not usually the best course of action.
    Things like physiotherapy after an accident requires a lot of effort on behalf of the person. If you lose a hand and they give you a donor one you need a lot of conscious thought in order to learn to use it, is someone who loses a hand not disabled?

    Also you said "mental" not just depression (although I realize the latter is what the thread is about), do people with schizophrenia have a disability in general?

    I'd argue that sometimes no amount of "conscious thought" will cure depression (or other mental problems for that matter). I'd also like to state that I do not believe depression as a blanket term is a disability, it's on a case by case basis.
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    (Original post by Lejax)
    There are many serious conditions and problems you can suffer from what can be cured and their nearly all classified as illness whether mental or physical

    we should have policies that offer greater help to people’s suffering from them but not the same ones applied to a disabled person
    The problem is, how long do you keep trying for before you reach the conclusion that a persons depression can't be cured? You could spend years of their life, likely making their condition worse.

    The status of having a disability can AFAIK be revoked. If something is having a crippling effect on someone's life at this point in time surely that's what matters. If it gets better that's grand.

    To do what is often done with mental illness and give it a physical point of comparison: people who are seemingly paralysed from the waist down can at times regain use of their legs. Does that mean that for the period they're paralysed they shouldn't be classed as disabled?
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    (Original post by Sabertooth)
    Things like physiotherapy after an accident requires a lot of effort on behalf of the person. If you lose a hand and they give you a donor one you need a lot of conscious thought in order to learn to use it, is someone who loses a hand not disabled?
    In those situations, the lines between mental and physical are a bit more blurred, as I'd classify relearning motor controls as a mental effort.

    Still not the same "effort" or even using the same part of the brain required to ease/help cure depression, and likely a very robotic and repetitive form of treatment, rather than reflective.

    (Original post by Sabertooth)
    Also you said "mental" not just depression (although I realize the latter is what the thread is about), do people with schizophrenia have a disability in general?
    I do believe people with schizophrenia have a disability, as long as it is incurable and completely out of their hands.

    (Original post by Sabertooth)
    I'd argue that sometimes no amount of "conscious thought" will cure depression (or other mental problems for that matter). I'd also like to state that I do not believe depression as a blanket term is a disability, it's on a case by case basis.
    Yes, I agree with you, however will suggest that the former is an edge case. The majority of depression cases can be helped by some form of action on the sufferer's part, along with guidance and help (though I don't have anything to back this up, except anecdote and personal observations).

    I'd actually be OK with compromising towards the position that depression can be classed as a disability on a case-by-case basis.
 
 
 
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