Getting the right amount of assistance from Veterans Affairs (VA) programs is not a guarantee, even if you're not able to transition to a healthy civilian life without help. Although the VA exists to help veterans as they enter and try to thrive in the civilian world, the burden of proof when it comes to getting benefits may be more than the average veteran is ready for. If you're having trouble working through pain or mobility issues, but can't afford therapy or worry about being able to afford therapy in the future, here are a few claim system techniques that could get the help you need--at least the basic level, then working your way up.
The VA Helps All Honorable Discharge Veterans
If you left the military with an honorable discharge, you have basic eligibility for VA services that are similar to a doctor's office or hospital outpatient visit. Surgery and other intensive routines are usually out of the question, but basic analysis of your health can be done along with prescriptions for your condition. It doesn't solve the problem, but you can get some relief in order to work towards recovery with a less pain-distracted mind.
Once you're able to get more comfortable, put in a disability claim. For general pain and disability, it's hard to prove or disprove that your problems are related to the military, so at least consider that even the basic level of hardship in the military could have caused some of your problems. If you're absolutely sure that your problems were cause by the military, make sure to get your proof in order.
The term service-connected is used for injuries and disability that were caused by the military. To prove service-connection, you need to show how your condition is related to the military. This can be done by showing military records of your complaints while you were in the military, or some kind of dated, official statement showing that you were involved in an event that could have caused the problem.
This doesn't mean specifically combat or specifically a job-related injury. If you were in the military, uniformed and at the job or not, it counts.
Getting A Professional's Help
In addition to showing how the condition is service-connected, you need to prove that you're still suffering. Unfortunately, wincing, grimaces and moans aren't enough; you'll need material evidence showing how the pain or disability was caused. The VA doesn't dismiss every veteran's complaint as fraud, but fraud filtering is a necessary part of the system that you need to get through with proof.
If you've been examined by the VA in the past with no results, or felt that your examination was rushed, a physical therapist can help by both providing therapy services and linking you with medical professionals who can help. By explaining your pain and disability, the therapist can develop a recovery plan and work with other medical specialists to figure out what went wrong.
It takes creativity and time in some cases to find problems such as muscle damage, tumors and other defects, and there are many parts of the body that require specific analysis instead of a full body scan to find. Contact a physical therapist to get the proof you need for your claim, and to bring the therapist in as a referral if you're approved. Contact a clinic like Annapolis Family Physical Therapy to get started.Share