The challenges related to sleep that many veterans across America face can often be directly linked to their time in the military. Everything from insomnia to nightmares to sleep apnea could make sleeping difficult or lead to other health complications.
In some circumstances, it is possible for a former servicemember to obtain disability benefits from the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) for sleep-related disorders. However, these claims are frequently denied, even when the applicant meets all the requirements for coverage. To learn more about your options regarding veterans’ sleep disorder claims, speak with a seasoned attorney from our firm.
Insomnia is more than the occasional restless night. This condition is characterized by prolonged periods of sleep disturbance that can impact a veteran’s daily life. This chronic sleep disorder includes multiple symptoms, some of which include:
To obtain VA benefits, a former servicemember must first obtain a diagnosis of insomnia from their doctor. Without a current diagnosis, benefits will not be awarded. A veteran must also be able to link their insomnia to their active duty military service. This is known as a medical nexus.
Proving this link can be difficult, as it may not always be clear what brought on insomnia. Insomnia can stem from stress, chronic pain, and more. However, a veteran’s medical records could be powerful evidence for establishing a medical nexus. If a former servicemembers sought treatment for insomnia during active duty, those records could be cited as evidence of a service connection.
Sleep apnea is another common sleep disorder that can form the basis of a successful VA disability claim. Sleep apnea causes the muscles in the throat to close, making it difficult for a person to breathe while sleeping. This oxygen deprivation can have a variety of consequences, including elevated blood pressure and heart problems.
There are multiple conditions that could lead to sleep apnea in veterans, including anxiety, depression, or other mental disorders linked to a person’s military service. Parkinson’s disease has also been linked to sleep apnea. When these underlying conditions result from a service-related event, they could lead to disability compensation.
Trouble sleeping is commonly linked to post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) in veterans and civilians alike. Unfortunately, PTSD is a common condition in many military servicemembers, and they often experience difficulty or disturbed sleeping as a result. For example, PTSD is known to cause nightmares and insomnia, however these would both be symptoms included in the rating criteria for PTSD.
If you have questions about your right to pursue a disability claim due to a sleep disorder, an experienced attorney may have the answers. By speaking with legal counsel, you could learn about your options and discover the strength of your potential claim.
Do not pursue a veterans’ sleep disorder claim on your own. Our diligent team of attorneys regularly assists veterans across the country with their disability claims and can help you too regardless of where you live. Call immediately to schedule a confidential consultation and discuss your legal options.