Posts tagged with "sickness"

Disability illustration for 360 MAGAZINE

What Qualifies You for Social Security Disability Benefits?

To qualify for Social Security Disability benefits, you must have a qualifying disability and have worked in jobs that required you to pay into the Social Security system. If you meet these requirements and your doctor says you won’t be able to work for one year or longer, you may be able to receive benefits until you can work again—if that ever happens. 

So which conditions qualify you for disability benefits? Read this and see if your diagnosis is on the list. If it’s not, don’t worry, your condition may still be qualifying. 

  • Asthma
  • Anxiety 
  • Autism
  • Back injuries
  • Blindness
  • Cerebral palsy
  • Coronary artery disease
  • COPD
  • Deafness
  • Disorders of bone marrow failure
  • Epilepsy
  • Heart failure
  • Hemolytic anemias
  • HIV/AIDS
  • Irritable bowel disorder
  • Intellectual disorder
  • Kidney disease
  • Liver disease
  • Lupus
  • Marfan syndrome
  • Multiple sclerosis
  • Parkinson’s disease
  • Rheumatoid arthritis
  • Sjogren’s syndrome

Any disease, injury, or disorder that prevents you from working for at least 12 months could potentially be a qualifying condition, depending on the severity. You’ll need to discuss your condition with a Social Security caseworker to determine whether or not you qualify. 

There are certain conditions that will automatically qualify you for benefits so you can begin receiving payments right away without having to go through the approval process first. These include early-onset Alzheimer’s disease, Lou Gherig’s disease, stage IV or inflammatory breast cancer, cancer of the pancreas or gallbladder, and several other cancers.

How to Apply

If you want the Social Security disability process to run smoothly and efficiently, there are some things you need to know before your first appointment. To get the process started immediately, come prepared. Bring your Social Security number and those of your spouse and children, your W-2 information from the past year, and discharge papers if you were in the military.

The first thing you’ll need to do after you’ve gathered your information is to fill out a Social Security Disability report form. You can download this from their website and fill it out in advance. This form will ask you for information like your doctors’ contact details, the medications you’re taking, your past jobs, and any claims you’ve filed.

The next step in the process is to schedule your appointment with the Social Security Administration. You can make your appointment over the phone by calling 1-800-772-1213 or schedule your appointment online. 

Another thing you can do to speed up the application process is to get a copy of your medical records from your physician in advance. Once you’ve requested your record, your doctor has 30 days to get it to you. Many doctors will turn it around faster than that, but it’s still smart to request it at least 30 days ahead of your appointment. 

You can download this Disability Starter Kit to learn more about what to expect throughout the process. This helpful guide contains information, a worksheet, and a checklist that’ll help you prepare.

If Your Benefits Are Denied

According to the Social Security Disability lawyers at Bader Scott, in many cases the initial claim will be denied by Claims Examiners, who often make mistakes due to a lack of experience. With an attorney’s help, you may be able to successfully appeal so your application for benefits can be settled on favorable terms. 

You can apply for an appeal hearing on the Social Security website, but be forewarned, you’re going to be waiting for this hearing for a long time. On average, the wait time for an appeal will be twelve months or longer. If your appeal goes well and your benefits are approved, you’ll get retroactive benefits either in payments or a lump sum. 

You will have 60 days after you receive the notice of denial to file your claim. If you are denied, you should get on this right away. Your benefits may depend on it.

AUTHOR: Cheryl Roy

Doctor, Coronavirus, Health, Vaughn Lowery, 360 Magazine,

Brave New Medicine: A Doctor’s Unconventional Path to Healing Her Autoimmune Illness

By Cynthia Li, MD

DOCTOR-AS-PATIENT MEMOIR REIMAGINES THE ART AND SCIENCE OF HEALING

“In Cynthia Li’s spellbinding book, we encounter the moving story of a physician struggling with her own autoimmune illness. Li’s writing is so intimate — and so exacting — that it cuts like a knife. She raises fundamental questions about the future of medicine, her own future, and about being a doctor and a patient at the same time. The result is a beautiful book that will be read and remembered for years to come.”—Siddhartha Mukherjee, Pulitzer Prize–winning author of The Emperor of All Maladies

Millions of people worldwide are affected by autoimmune diseases. Some are common, like Hashimoto’s thyroid disease, and others are mysterious conditions like chronic fatigue syndrome (ME/CFS) and dysautonomia. While the latter are gaining attention, patients struggling with these ailments are often dismissed by their doctors, families, and friends. The medical community often refers to them as “difficult patients” because they don’t follow the traditional checkboxes of illness and their symptoms can elude standard testing. When one doctor develops a disabling autoimmune illness and becomes that “difficult patient” herself, the beliefs and methods she once swore by collapse.

Brave New Medicine: A Doctor’s Unconventional Path to Healing Her Autoimmune Illness  takes us on an intimate whirlwind of a journey with Cynthia Li—a doctor who seemingly had it all until her health took an unexpected turn, leading her to question her medical training. Dr. Li’s story is raw, honest, and vulnerable as she describes her descent first into an autoimmune thyroid condition, then mysterious symptoms that leave her housebound with no end in sight. Test after test came back “within normal limits,” baffling her doctors—and herself. Housebound with two young daughters, Dr. Li began a solo odyssey from her living room couch to discover a way to heal.

Dr. Li is forced to dive into the root causes of her illness, and to learn to unlock her body’s innate intelligence and wholeness. Dr. Li relates her story with the insight of a scientist, and the humility and candor of a patient, exploring the emotional and spiritual shifts beyond the physical body. What’s more, she chronicles 15 practical steps on “how to get off the couch,” and expands this list in Part III, so fellow sufferers can find the wisdom and inspiration to begin their personal healing journeys.

“I entered my health challenges as a doctor, and came out a healer,” says Dr. Li.  “I hadn’t known the difference before. I first had to unlearn the idea that chronic diseases are determined by a fixed number or a positive test result, or fulfilling specific criteria. So the body, I realized, isn’t a three-dimensional puzzle to be solved. It’s a living, dynamic ecosystem to be nurtured. At the heart of my healing was learning to embrace my sensitive nature.”

Drawing on cutting-edge science, ancient healing arts, and the power of intuition, Brave New Medicine offers support, validation, and a new perspective for doctors and patients alike. This is the first memoir by a doctor evaluating her own complex illness through the lens of an integrative and root-cause paradigm. While many books are written by laypeople on mysterious illnesses, having a doctor go through this journey, explaining it from the inside-out, embracing the art of intuition—and pairing it with the analytical mind—offers a whole new dimension. Dr. Li explores epigenetics, neuroplasticity, the microbiome, environmental health, and functional medicine along with acupuncture, ancestral cooking, qigong, and grief rituals to get down to the root causes of her illness. In healing herself, she learns she is healing her family, too.

“The simplest step in healing is also the hardest: believing it is possible,” adds Dr. Li.  “An insidious process often happens with chronic disease, when the illness becomes your identity, especially when it’s an all-encompassing, debilitating condition like autoimmunity, chronic fatigue syndrome, or advanced cancer. The key to shifting our beliefs is to step outside of the prognoses and diagnoses long enough to tap into the innate intelligence within our cells. Because the body is where the subconscious lives, and where symptoms are trying to tell us the imbalances that are brewing. This isn’t positive thinking. It’s physiology at its best. By addressing root causes, reducing inflammation, restoring imbalances, and connecting to something greater beyond us, healing happens as a side-effect.

About the Author:

CYNTHIA LI, MD graduated from The University of Texas Southwestern Medical Center, and has practiced internal medicine in settings as diverse as Kaiser Permanente Medical Center, San Francisco General Hospital, St. Anthony Medical Clinic for the homeless, and Doctors Without Borders in rural China. Her own health challenges led her to functional medicine, a paradigm that addresses the root causes of chronic conditions. She currently serves on the faculty of the Healer’s Art Program at the University of California San Francisco School of Medicine, and has a private practice. She lives in Berkeley, CA with her husband and their two daughters.

Connect with Cynthia Li, MD on Facebook @dr.cynthia.li and visit www.cynthialimd.com.

 

Brave New Medicine: A Doctor’s Unconventional Path to Healing Her Autoimmune Illness is available September 1, 2019 in paperback at Amazon and other retailers.

Anne Welsh

Interview with Instagram influencer Anne Welsh

In simple terms, Anne Welsh is a hard-working, fashion-driven mum, who shares her lifestyle and experiences of positive living on Instagram. But she is also much more than that. The former Chairperson of the UK Sickle Cell Society and Founder/President of ‘Arise Consult’ is a passionate advocate for people with chronic illness.

Anne influences many people with her fashion style, travel and lifestyle in general. But sharing content of her everyday life has resulted in her gaining nearly a million Instagram followers.

Prior to becoming a social media influencer, Anne had a formidable academic career focused on obtaining an Accounting and Finance Degree as an undergraduate and then attending the prestigious ‘Cass Business School’ in London to complete a further Master’s degree in Investment Management. Before founding ‘Arise Consult’, her career roles included Vice President at New World Capital and Senior Vice-Associate of Marketing at Investment Bank, Lehman Brothers and Neuberger Berman.

Being a mother has changed Anne in many ways, but especially in her views on ‘compassionate’ fashion for women. She shares her advice to future bloggers and reveals how she became an Instagram influencer.

Anne, how did you build up the huge following you have on Instagram? How did all start?

I must say it wasn’t an easy start. It was a journey that still continues every day. Firstly, I had an aspiration to be an influencer and role model for family living as well as for people who are challenged by chronic diseases; however, I was not exactly sure how to achieve that goal.

I researched multiple platforms and the right platform for me was Instagram. I have now been involved with Instagram for two years and the platform continues to improve in allowing users to post with more sophistication and gain more followers. I find that I can directly approach anyone in the community and learn from other people’s experiences.

A theme that has always permeated my story boards is to promote the awareness of sickle cell disease. As a sickle cell sufferer, I felt obligated to tell positive and uplifting stories that would inspire others to achieve great things in their personal lives. I also found out that this positive approach to life has been embraced by many people living ordinary lives, but who are looking for a ‘new spark’ or who may be facing personal challenges outside of their control.

Building my Instagram following was not something that happened over night. You must post regularly and gradually; through comments and likes, you become to understand what people like and prefer to see posted. Improving on the posting experience is an evolutionary story. Be patient, as success is unlikely to happen quickly.

What are your posts all about and how do you interact with your followers?

My posts are usually centered around my personal experiences; travelling, beauty, fashion and lifestyle, with an important focus on health. Fashion is almost always a part of my posts and I get to work with my children and family on these aspects. Styles & certain fashion looks become my form of communication, an expression of my femininity, a way to find new statements and rediscover myself. That is why I love to showcase fashion and beauty aspects.

Sharing travel destinations is typically another function of my job description. I am fortunate enough to travel to many places internationally as well as locally across the UK. London itself is a world class destination with so many great photo opportunities. When I am at a location it requires significant schedule and logistics planning so that I can fit in business meetings between getting to photogenic sightseeing locations. Sometimes this can be very difficult to accomplish, and discipline is the key.

I am also happy to show some details of my family life, specifically woven around those interesting moments I share with my kids, my nieces and nephews and the family’s daily routine. I have found this part of my postings to be very popular. I am sure my followers encounter many of the same challenges I do with having a family, so it is a common bond we share.

What is your partnering philosophy with different brands?

I am very selective with brands. I usually accept invitations from only a small percentage of the brands that approach me. The first hurdle for a brand that seeks collaboration with me is I must love the product or service. If I don’t hold that passion it will come across to my followers as not very genuine and this will not achieve the marketing results of the product. When I post something which includes a brand, it is because it is the best in the sector.

Another key aspect of my personal brand, Anne Welsh, is that I interact with my followers. I work diligently to keep them updated and I personally respond to many of the questions I am asked. This level of interaction is actually a key requirement of the clients that approach me.

What is your best advice for people who want to become Instagram fashion or lifestyle bloggers?

My best advice for anyone who wants to be a lifestyle or fashion influencer is to be yourself. I think the only way to achieve success is to be original and at the same time be able to translate that originality into your own distinctive brand that companies can see as being useful for their business.

My passion for my family, the fact that I suffer with sickle cell disease and where I live have all been instrumental in developing my original offer. I would also follow-up that to say this is a very competitive market and clients are becoming much more savvy in how and at what level they pay Instagram influencers.

Using the fashion theme as an example, I consistently showcase my ‘Passion for Fashion’ and prominently display my latest looks on my website and on my Instagram page. You don’t have to have a million-dollar wardrobe, but you have to be thoughtful in what you purchase and research how these pieces can be recycled in unique ways.

Do you have any special projects coming up?

I have a very special project coming up, that is so dear to me. It has been my absolute dream for the last ten years to complete a book that improves the awareness of Sickle Cell Disease. My greatest influence will be to showcase to sufferers that your quality of life can be improved; that there is hope. The book is a memoir of my life, and the daily challenges that I have faced and how I have overcome them to be where I am today.

The book will be released on 19th of June to coincide with the United Nations Sickle Cell Day.

Brits x Eyes Health Check

Over 18 Million Brits Do Not Consider Eyes As Part of Their Routine Health Check :

New research released by Vision Express to mark World Glaucoma Week reveals over a third of Brits (35%) do not consider having an eye test as part of a routine body ‘MOT’ health check. Worryingly, 1 out of 5 people would choose sight as their least valued sense, with over 1 in 12 Brits (8%) admitting that they have never had their eyes tested.

 

Research shows that 18-24 year olds are the least likely to get their eyes tested, with two in five (40%) saying they do not get them tested at all. This compares to only a quarter (25%) of 66-70 year olds. 1 in 3 Brits who don’t consider eyes as part of their health MOT check only get their eyes tested when they are advised by a doctor and almost a fifth (19%) stated that an eye test is not important.

 

Even if you don’t think you’ve got any problems with your eyes, you should still get them tested every two years. The research also reveals that 3.6 million Brits (7%) had their eyes tested as long as over six years ago.

 

As World Glaucoma Week puts the condition at the top of the health agenda, research conducted by the National Eye Health Research Centre (NERC) unveils a worrying landscape for glaucoma over the next 30 years. It is estimated that the condition may affect 3.2million in the UK in 2050, but unless detection rates are improved, only 1.28million will have been diagnosed and be receiving the treatments they urgently need.

 

To know more about World Glaucoma Week, watch video here.