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Mental Health and claiming PIP

Andrew66Andrew66 Member Posts: 1 Listener
edited February 18 in PIP, DLA and AA
I suffer and been diagnosed with Anxiety and Panic Disorder, Severe Depression as well as Agoraphobia.
I can't do anything for myself as the Physical Symptoms are very disabling and cannot leave my home.  I even had to pack up my job 2 yrs ago because of it, 
I suffer with severe Physical Symptoms 24/7 but I cannot function like a human being, yet my PIP claim is now on its 2nd Appeal.
I have all the medical evidence but it still gets refused and the tribunal still say my day to day life is not effected.
I cannot understand this and neither can my Dr as well my Metal Health Dr and also O/T support....just not sure what to do next to get my Disability recognised as it has already been with the medical side...the process of this even puts people under more stress...   

Replies

  • woodbinewoodbine Member Posts: 2,994 Disability Gamechanger
    Hi Andrew @Andrew66 how are you this evening? Sorry that you are having this problem, when you say your claim is on it's second appeal do you mean it's been to the first tier tribunal and is now with the upper tier tribunal?
    my advice is given freely and is correct to the best of my knowledge.
  • janer1967janer1967 Community champion Posts: 7,450 Disability Gamechanger
    Hi andrew 

    Sorry you are having such a hard time with your PIP is this a review or first application? 
  • mikehughescqmikehughescq Member Posts: 5,394 Disability Gamechanger
    Starting point is to identify which specific points you think you ought to have scared abs why. Without that being done then any claim for MH likely is going nowhere fast. 
  • anxiousbirdanxiousbird Member Posts: 82 Courageous
    Hi Andrew 
    I completely understand, I’m in the same position. It’s just taken over my day to day life, can’t function like a normal human being. But still I was refused last time and I never appealed. I’ve now applied again and awaiting assessment next Wednesday. 

    Starting point is to identify which specific points you think you ought to have scared abs why. Without that being done then any claim for MH likely is going nowhere fast. 
    I did that last time as well, explained it in detail, gave real examples and everything, still they refused me. What does one do then? Just very worried about my assessment again.
  • CressCress Member Posts: 466 Pioneering
    I was awarded for mental health and as everyone else, worried about the assessment. It went ok.

    Kept going over my form wishing I'd done it better.
    Found it so hard explaining why I just couldn't do certain things and of course its embarrassing writing down and then talking to the assessor about how I can spend weeks in the same clothes, not washing, not wanting to eat or be with people feeling physically sick at the thought of having to deal with anything outside my comfort zone...and most things were out of my comfort zone.

    I don't know why I was awarded when others are not, and untill April 23 which I didnt expect.

    I wish you both luck and hope you get the award you think fair.
    And of course failing that, appeal.
    Something I would never have had the bottle to do before coming on this site.
  • mikehughescqmikehughescq Member Posts: 5,394 Disability Gamechanger
    I did that last time as well, explained it in detail, gave real examples and everything, still they refused me. What does one do then? Just very worried about my assessment again.
    Challenge the decision. Look at the jebel of detail in your examples. Play devils advocate with your own evidence. 
  • kimbychickkimbychick Member Posts: 31 Connected
    @Cress your disability sounds almost exactly like mine. Do you mind me asking what rate you were awarded? I was awarded standard daily living and standard mobility from 2017. My review was sent off 5 weeks ago though so worrying times! 
  • anxiousbirdanxiousbird Member Posts: 82 Courageous
    Cress said:
    I was awarded for mental health and as everyone else, worried about the assessment. It went ok.

    Kept going over my form wishing I'd done it better.
    Found it so hard explaining why I just couldn't do certain things and of course its embarrassing writing down and then talking to the assessor about how I can spend weeks in the same clothes, not washing, not wanting to eat or be with people feeling physically sick at the thought of having to deal with anything outside my comfort zone...and most things were out of my comfort zone.

    I don't know why I was awarded when others are not, and untill April 23 which I didnt expect.

    I wish you both luck and hope you get the award you think fair.
    And of course failing that, appeal.
    Something I would never have had the bottle to do before coming on this site.
    Hi @cress
    do you mind me asking whether you take any medicines for your mental illness? Or did you have any evidence to show from a mental health expert? 
    Asking because I’ve seen people (including myself) being rejected only on the basis that the dosage is too low or that we dont have enough professional input. (At the time of my last application I had already been on various medications in the past with no improvement and therefore had given them up because they were more harmful than useful. I was only taking a benzodiazepine only in the case of a severe attack. Also had therapists’ input and records showing years’ of therapies) 
  • CressCress Member Posts: 466 Pioneering
    @Cress your disability sounds almost exactly like mine. Do you mind me asking what rate you were awarded? I was awarded standard daily living and standard mobility from 2017. My review was sent off 5 weeks ago though so worrying times! 
    I scraped 8 points for daily living, which I was grateful for.
    Nothing for mobility.
    I explained that I will only go out when I have to and manage this on my own as I cant cope with other people.
    Good luck with your review!
  • CressCress Member Posts: 466 Pioneering
    Cress said:
    I was awarded for mental health and as everyone else, worried about the assessment. It went ok.

    Kept going over my form wishing I'd done it better.
    Found it so hard explaining why I just couldn't do certain things and of course its embarrassing writing down and then talking to the assessor about how I can spend weeks in the same clothes, not washing, not wanting to eat or be with people feeling physically sick at the thought of having to deal with anything outside my comfort zone...and most things were out of my comfort zone.

    I don't know why I was awarded when others are not, and untill April 23 which I didnt expect.

    I wish you both luck and hope you get the award you think fair.
    And of course failing that, appeal.
    Something I would never have had the bottle to do before coming on this site.
    Hi @cress
    do you mind me asking whether you take any medicines for your mental illness? Or did you have any evidence to show from a mental health expert? 
    Asking because I’ve seen people (including myself) being rejected only on the basis that the dosage is too low or that we dont have enough professional input. (At the time of my last application I had already been on various medications in the past with no improvement and therefore had given them up because they were more harmful than useful. I was only taking a benzodiazepine only in the case of a severe attack. Also had therapists’ input and records showing years’ of therapies) 
    When I applied I was on sertraline 200mg and buspirone.
    I had nothing in the way of letters from any mental health experts, literally just sent medical records that had over 30 years history of anxiety and depression meds and details of time in hospital back in 2017 following suicide attempt.
    After seeing psychiatrist I now also take quetiapine...

    I dont think they'd have thanked me for all the medical records, I used a high lighter on anything about my depression to try and make it easier to wade through lol

    I could easily go through my form and see were the points I was awarded could go the other way as everything I cant do for myself I do for my son as his carer, but for whatever reason it went in my favour.

    Best wishes and good luck going forward!
  • Tori_ScopeTori_Scope Community Team Posts: 3,243 Disability Gamechanger
    Hi @Andrew66 :) How are you? I hope that the above advice has been useful. Please do give us some further information if you feel able.

    I'm glad that you have what seems to be a supportive medical team. Do you feel as though you're receiving enough support for your mental health at the moment, even if many of the issues you're facing are ongoing? 
    Online Community Coordinator, she/her

    Want to tell us about your experience on the community? Talk to our chatbot here and let us know what you think
  • anxiousbirdanxiousbird Member Posts: 82 Courageous
    edited February 20
    I did that last time as well, explained it in detail, gave real examples and everything, still they refused me. What does one do then? Just very worried about my assessment again.
    Challenge the decision. Look at the jebel of detail in your examples. Play devils advocate with your own evidence. 
    One more question, Mike, I was going through the paperwork etc and the one thing that the assessor mentioned in each activity was that ‘she doesn’t take many medications for her mental issues and has only taken low dosage’ and that’s why she thinks that I can’t be that bad. 
    The truth is, I have tried taking medications in the past for my problems, they didn’t really help me much in the long term. Then I was taking a low dose of a benzodiazepine only on as and when needed basis (just to take the edge of the extremely bad attacks) - I’m still taking that one. Other than that, I was recently prescribed another SSRI but because they work by first increasing the issues and I have heard many stories of people feeling awful while taking it, I just can’t bring myself to start taking it. I’ve also been diagnosed with health anxiety/ hypochondria so even though it sounds silly not wanting to take a medicine and instead suffering through the illness, it’s just how it is! (I’ve suffered through dental infections, which if you’ve experienced one you’ll know is one of the worst pains, and yet reluctant to take medicines for it. Had an operation two years back and refused to take painkillers. Had to get a root canal done but refused to get a local anaesthesia). It’s just the way it is and I understand that most assessors will take it as a negative for me and always going to penalise me for it? 

    Do I have no chance of ever getting PIP unless I am taking high doses of medications? How do I make my case? 

    Really worried 

    edit: I should mention also that there are certain ‘medicines’ that I’m okay taking, no idea why. There’s a ‘salt mix’ for indigestion, only a low dose of benzo but only when getting an extreme attack, not regularly, and a prevention medicine for heart diseases. I don’t know why I’m okay with only these but not others, I honestly can’t explain it, but that’s just how it is! 
  • anxiousbirdanxiousbird Member Posts: 82 Courageous
    I did that last time as well, explained it in detail, gave real examples and everything, still they refused me. What does one do then? Just very worried about my assessment again.
    Challenge the decision. Look at the jebel of detail in your examples. Play devils advocate with your own evidence. 
    One more question, Mike, I was going through the paperwork etc and the one thing that the assessor mentioned in each activity was that ‘she doesn’t take many medications for her mental issues and has only taken low dosage’ and that’s why she thinks that I can’t be that bad. 
    The truth is, I have tried taking medications in the past for my problems, they didn’t really help me much in the long term. Then I was taking a low dose of a benzodiazepine only on as and when needed basis (just to take the edge of the extremely bad attacks) - I’m still taking that one. Other than that, I was recently prescribed another SSRI but because they work by first increasing the issues and I have heard many stories of people feeling awful while taking it, I just can’t bring myself to start taking it. I’ve also been diagnosed with health anxiety/ hypochondria so even though it sounds silly not wanting to take a medicine and instead suffering through the illness, it’s just how it is! (I’ve suffered through dental infections, which if you’ve experienced one you’ll know is one of the worst pains, and yet reluctant to take medicines for it. Had an operation two years back and refused to take painkillers. Had to get a root canal done but refused to get a local anaesthesia). It’s just the way it is and I understand that most assessors will take it as a negative for me and always going to penalise me for it? 

    Do I have no chance of ever getting PIP unless I am taking high doses of medications? How do I make my case? 

    Really worried 

    edit: I should mention also that there are certain ‘medicines’ that I’m okay taking, no idea why. There’s a ‘salt mix’ for indigestion, only a low dose of benzo but only when getting an extreme attack, not regularly, and a prevention medicine for heart diseases. I don’t know why I’m okay with only these but not others, I honestly can’t explain it, but that’s just how it is! 
    Apart from medications, I’ve had several rounds of therapies over the years (none helped long term and I gave up on the idea), have gone through two rounds of CBT (again, no help), now referred to secondary care. 
  • calcotticalcotti Member Posts: 486 Pioneering
    edited February 20
    Unfortunately I can't recall it but I'm fairly sure there's some case law that makes clear that absence of medication/treatment should not be taken to mean that a health condition does not exist. If I'm correct hopefully somebody else can confirm (or contradict if I'm wrong).
    Information I post is for England unless otherwise stated. Rules may be different in other parts of UK.
  • anxiousbirdanxiousbird Member Posts: 82 Courageous
    calcotti said:
    Unfortunately I can't recall it but I'm fairly sure there's some case law that makes clear that absence of medication/treatment should not be taken to mean that a health condition does not exist. 
    Really? I’ll look it up. Yea it just seems unfair being penalised for not taking medication when not taking medication IS one of your problems! :( 
  • mikehughescqmikehughescq Member Posts: 5,394 Disability Gamechanger
    @calcotti is correct. Different scenario for the discussion but yes there is clear case law on the point. How do you make your point? Just say so and refer to https://www.rightsnet.org.uk/forums/viewthread/15066.
  • calcotticalcotti Member Posts: 486 Pioneering
    edited February 20
    Thanks Mike, that was the one i was thinking of but I had forgotten that it had found it's way into the assessment guide.
    Information I post is for England unless otherwise stated. Rules may be different in other parts of UK.
  • anxiousbirdanxiousbird Member Posts: 82 Courageous
    Thanks Mike and Calcotti, you’ve been very helpful!! 
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