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Posts: 19
Reply with quote  #1 
I have had this horrific problem for over 2 years now and its bad enough trying to cope with this life let alone grappling with centrelink and Jobseeker. i live in nsw australia and i have tried 2 times to get on to disability as its impossible to go to work.and have been rejected.apparently im not debilitated enough!! its hard enough to get out of bed let alone think about getting ready to go out to that extremely loud world to not pass out or lose it and fall to pieces in front of everyone. My dellema is i cant go to work even tho i have specialists letters stating i have H and how it affects me, they demand i look for work and so the Dr gives me a certificate for 3 months and this gives me a break from being pressured to work, then when that runs out i have to do it again.then they say they wont accept anymore certificates iv had too many!!! i have now run out of any one will listen so in 2 weeks they are making me look for work. Is everyone else with H being made to work.if so how on earth is this possible?!?!

Posts: 174
Reply with quote  #2 
Very sorry to read of your struggles. I have been at this 19 months, so almost as long as you. I am not sure how disability works in AU. Here in US, you often need to retain a SSDI attorney if you want to find success, particularly if you suffer from an invisible disability. This is how I helped my wife get it first time through.

I have very severe hyperacusis. I also have severe ear pain with reactive tinnitus, and get migraines which worsen my hyperacusis.. I’ve still been able to maintain my job (I work in a noisy hospital) with many careful adjustments. I think, in retrospect, staying at work has been very helpful in maintaining my mental health, giving me something else to focus on, using the skills I have worked hard to obtain, and ultimately (and most importantly) allowing me the opportunity to help others and bring perspective. I have foam ear plugs and musicians plugs I wear in noisier areas but try not to wear them in areas that are more predictable sound wise. There are days when I just have to bear through the pain, and others where I have very little pain. There are times I think I’ll never be able to make it through the day, and surprisingly enough, I am able to handle it. I’m glad I have stuck it out. It isn’t easy, but for many of us, even with bad cases, it is doable.

If you can find ways of making it work for you, and if you are able to, getting back to some form of employmentt might be actually beneficial for you. I don’t know your situation other than what you wrote and we all are complex. Sending you some hope from across the pond.


Posts: 32
Reply with quote  #3 
Likely a commonalty among countries is that been successful at securing disability benefits is a challenge and hard work in itself, and the complexity of "invisible disabilities" and less common disabilities such as hyperacuis and CFS/ME is all the more complex and hard work.  Usually in Canada, one needs support/assistance from disability advocates and at least advise, if not representation, from a lawyer with a track record in disabilities and human rights.  Also having medical support from doctors who themselves have experience dealing with applying for disability benefits is of great assistance.

You mention you are very fatigued--is this exclusively from hyperacusis or due you have another health issue also giving fatigue.  For persons who have CFS/ME we have used the methodology of a log to document ones level of functioning and lack of predictability for employment. They can usually be found on line. Usually one needs to document also what treatments one is going--what is one doing to improve ones health.  There are lots of resources on this network for hyperacusis treatment I believe.

For myself I have both worked and been on disability benefits with "invisible disabilities" and both have their advantages and challenges.  If one is able to work and have disability accommodations and have a supportive work environment that is really fantastic, AND REALLY REWARDING,  but if ones level of functioning is too low, and one is not predicable for employment, then secuing disability benefits is something  one may want to work towards, (while doing treatments) but it is a lot of work for sure.  Usually, in Canada, the MD has to indicate that the disability is permanent or that the prognosis is unknown, but based on lack of progress is expected to be for a significant period of time.  There is usually a demarcation at two years since onset where the disability application changes to unable to do ones own profession to being unable to do any profession.  One may find this applicable or not oneself, but in Canada that is the route of the insurance providers.  

Also, in Canada, anyhow, age is a factor in that both private and public disability providers are usually more reluctant to grant disability benefits the younger one is as they simply will have to pay for that person longer--so more and more evidence could be  required.

I hope you find some supports, and advocacy services, as that is an asset.  Hyperacusis tends to be an isolating disability so the more supports the better.

I do agree with the other writer that if one can work it is certainly beneficial bearing in mind the preceding.

Posts: 143
Reply with quote  #4 
There is some excellent information above that should be helpful.  In the USA most of the individuals that have been granted disability payments have focused their claim on the symptoms of H like phobias, stress, pain, anxiety, psychology issues, etc., and have put H and sound in the back ground. 
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