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Disability, or not?

(8 Posts)
Greyponcho Thu 06-Oct-16 17:50:32

Hi,
Not posted in health chat before, so apologies if this has already been 'done' before.
Over the past couple of years I've developed a condition that the doctors and specialists have given up trying to diagnose and have just diagnosed it as a chronic pain condition. So they're no longer dong tests or investigations, just trying to manage the symptoms. So far, not very successful as the pain still has huge impact on me day to day. I daren't drive on the current medication.
The condition has impacted me more significantly for just over a year now (causing me to take days off work ill, taking strong painkillers to try to lessen the agonising pain, only a handful of days a month where the pain isn't significant enough to interfere with my life). I was given an advice leaflet saying that a chronic pain condition which lasts more than a year likely fulfils the definition of disability under the equality act.
So... is it? Really?
I am very stubborn and self sufficient. I know that many people really struggle with their restrictions that are recognised disabilities... but I want colleagues to understand that I'm not shirking my duties or slacking off skiving.
Don't really know what to tell people...
(Sorry for long post/being vague)

CMOTDibbler Thu 06-Oct-16 18:57:16

I think chronic pain does have an impact on your activities of daily living, and so can be classed as a disability. I have CRPS and it certainly has a massive impact on me - but I know people really don't get what that level of pain means and what it takes to manage it every day

yeOldeTrout Thu 06-Oct-16 20:09:15

It sounds like a disability to me. But You don't have to tell colleagues, do you? I sometimes tick the "unregistered disabled' box b/c I have a long term condition to manage.

Do you need environmental modifications at work?

Greyponcho Fri 07-Oct-16 08:05:43

It does impact my work as part of my job should include driving, I have also excluded myself from working around heavy machinery due to the tiredness/clumsiness/dizziness of the medication.
Unfortunately I do work in a team with a lot of toxicity, have heard from a reliable source that a couple of members "wondered what [I] do" and there seems to be an assumption that if I'm in work I'm well.

Greyponcho Fri 07-Oct-16 08:11:53

P.s. Thank you for the replies.
I think that my query is partly because it is new territory for me, having to accept a new status quo of how my life is with prospect of the cause being rectified, that I am no longer able to do the things I used to and I can't be as self sufficient stubborn as 'normal'.

HeyMacWey Fri 07-Oct-16 10:26:11

Yes it would be classed as a disability and as such your employers should make reasonable adjustments to enable you do to your job.
I'm also new-ish to the world of hidden disability - it can take a while to get your head round it all.

LivingInMidnight Fri 07-Oct-16 17:32:09

Yeah I agree, it definitely sounds like a disability. On the positive side, you could potentially use access to work now. They've been brilliant for me!

yeOldeTrout Fri 07-Oct-16 20:41:00

yes, it's an identity shift/headache. I have BTDT. Sympathies.

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