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  • Christopher Le

Do Migraines Qualify for Social Security Disability Benefits?

As a law firm dedicated to serving individuals seeking assistance with disability claims, we understand the complexities surrounding conditions like migraines and their eligibility for Social Security Disability benefits. Migraines are not just headaches; they can be debilitating, affecting a person's ability to work and carry out daily activities. In this blog, we delve into the criteria set forth by the Social Security Administration (SSA) and provide insights into how migraines can qualify for disability benefits.

Understanding Migraines

Migraines are neurological conditions characterized by intense, throbbing headaches often accompanied by nausea, vomiting, and sensitivity to light and sound. They can be episodic or chronic, with varying frequency and severity. Migraines can significantly impact an individual's quality of life, making it challenging to maintain regular employment.

SSA Criteria for Disability Benefits

To qualify for Social Security Disability benefits, including Supplemental Security Income (SSI) and Social Security Disability Insurance (SSDI), individuals must meet the SSA's definition of disability. According to the SSA, a person is considered disabled if they have a medical condition that prevents them from engaging in substantial gainful activity (SGA) and is expected to last at least one year or result in death.

How Migraines Can Qualify for Disability Benefits

While migraines themselves are not explicitly listed in the SSA's Blue Book of impairments, individuals with migraines may still be eligible for disability benefits if they can demonstrate the following:

  1. Frequency and Severity: Documentation showing frequent and severe migraine attacks that significantly impair the individual's ability to function on a daily basis.

  2. Impact on Work Ability: Evidence indicating that migraines interfere with the individual's ability to perform work-related tasks, resulting in absenteeism, reduced productivity, or inability to maintain employment.

  3. Medical Evidence: Comprehensive medical records documenting the diagnosis of migraines, treatment history, response to medications, and any accompanying symptoms or complications.

  4. Functional Limitations: Assessments from healthcare providers detailing the functional limitations imposed by migraines, such as difficulty concentrating, sensitivity to light/noise, and limitations in physical activities.

Building a Strong Disability Claim

To increase the likelihood of a successful disability claim for migraines, it's essential to gather thorough documentation and evidence supporting the impact of migraines on your ability to work and carry out daily activities. This may include medical records, physician statements, treatment history, and testimonies from friends, family, or colleagues regarding the severity and frequency of migraine attacks.


Migraines can be debilitating conditions that significantly impair an individual's ability to work and function on a daily basis. While navigating the process of applying for Social Security Disability benefits can be daunting, understanding the criteria and building a strong disability claim can increase the chances of a successful outcome. If you're considering applying for disability benefits due to migraines, consulting with an experienced attorney who specializes in disability law can provide valuable guidance and support throughout the process. At Law Offices of Christopher Le, we are dedicated to advocating for individuals with disabilities and helping them secure the benefits they deserve. Contact us today to schedule a consultation and learn more about how we can assist you.

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