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We should start by discussing what is PTSD, and then how you can increase your PTSD VA Rating. First what it is not, is only combat-related. According to the American Psychiatric Association, Post Traumatic Stress Disorder is simply “a psychiatric disorder that can occur in people who have experienced or witnessed a traumatic event such as a natural disaster, a serious accident, a terrorist act, war/combat, rape, or other violent personal assault.”
Many veterans who have PTSD suffer in silence. Their symptoms are known only to themselves and can be invisible to their friends and close family. You are under no obligation to share your PTSD diagnosis with anyone, including your employer. If you don’t feel comfortable sharing about your PTSD, then it’s none of their business. In order to receive and accurate PTSD VA Rating you only need to talk about your VA PTSD Claim with your primary care doctor at VA, and your Va Psychologist and Va Psychiatrist. It is important to open up to be transparent with your mental health issues but you are only required to mention it to the folks that I identified above.
While working with my clients from VA Claims Insider, I have been surprised to learn how little many veterans understand about PTSD. For instance, when I am talking to veterans about their PTSD VA rating the first thing that jumps out at me is the lack of education that veterans receive about the language in ECFR 38 Part 4 which is the Schedule for Rating Disabilities. When filing a VA PTSD claim, it is important that your DBQ matches up with those ratings. One thing the VA is looking for in your claim is that your symptoms are chronic and recurring. They will not give you a claim if your symptoms just happened once. In your letters, including both of these as well as the severity of your symptoms.
With that being said, you have to make sure your PTSD is connected to service. This is done with a NEXUS letter. Make sure you have this. A clear NEXUS letter is a must in making sure that your claim is approved. This letter states that your injury, in this case, it’s PTSD, was either caused or made worse by your times in service. If you don’t have this letter, it is more likely that your claim will be denied.
PTSD (post-traumatic stress disorder) is a Mental Disorder that is caused by experiencing a traumatic event. When defining PTSD, a “traumatic event” is any event where the person experiences shocking circumstances that conflict with their understanding of what is right and good. Events that cause PTSD can include actual or threatened abuse, death, physical injury, sexual abuse/violence, accidents, situations that cause extreme fear, and many more.
Depending on the PTSD severity, PTSD can have a huge effect on the ability of an individual to function in normal life. Symptoms of PTSD can include fear, the inability to concentrate, depression, anti-social behaviors, violent outbursts, anger, nightmares, insomnia, and many more. The symptoms of PTSD can be constant, worsen over time, improve over time, or can come and go.
Like many mental illnesses, the exact symptoms of PTSD can be very different from one person to the next. Some symptoms of PTSD can show up immediately following the traumatic event, but most PTSD symptoms often develop over a period of time. This can be a few weeks and months to many years after the initial traumatic event.
Because of the naturally traumatic experiences that combat provides, many military members suffer from PTSD. Being exposed to a traumatic event alone, however, is not enough to be diagnosed with PTSD. There are many requirements that a condition must meet before it can be considered PTSD.
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