According to the Nebraska Department of Veteran’s Affairs, it is estimated that approximately 7.8% of all Americans will at some point in their lives experience Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD), with woman (10.4%) being twice as likely as men (5%) to develop PTSD.
And one would think that…
With such a high percentage of American’s suffering from this condition, the general public, at large, would have a much better understanding of exactly what PTSD is. Unfortunately, however, this doesn’t seem to be the case.
This is why…
We here at JustBuryMe have chosen to write this article so that we can help shed some light on what PTSD is, and how it will be viewed by insurance companies during a life insurance application process.
Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder Defined.
Post-traumatic stress disorder is defined as a psychological condition that is characterized by persistent mental and emotional anxiety occurring as a result of a physical injury or psychological shock.
In respect to those who have gone through difficulty, calling the effects of intense stress and trauma a “disorder” is not really fair. That is why a medal of honor winner had this to say about PTSD, ““If you just call it stress, what it really is, it explains the fact that it’s a natural reaction to a traumatic experience. It’s our body’s and mind’s natural reaction to try and remember and avoid those situations.”
Symptoms of PTSD may include:
- Abnormal mood swings which may include agitation, irritability, hostility, and hyper vigilance.
- Vivid flashbacks of the causal event.
- Insomnia and/or nightmares.
- Self-destructive behavior.
- And possible social isolation as well as emotional detachments are also very common.
Treatment for PTSD will often include:
Both therapeutic techniques with will include cognitive behavioral therapies, eye movement desensitization and reprocessing therapy, and exposure and response prevention as well in addition to prescription medications (mainly Selective Serotonin Reuptake Inhibitors).
The main problem with treating PTSD is that while it is clear that a stressful event can trigger the “onset” of PTSD, the actual mechanisms within the brain itself that causes PTSD are still largely unidentified.
The good news however, is that even though we don’t fully understand the “why” behind PTSD, physicians and researches alike have found that PTSD can be successfully treated and managed which is fantastic for those suffering from PTSD!
Qualifying for life insurance after being diagnosed with PTSD.
In the world of life insurance, PTSD is one of those medical conditions that you can never “really” be cured of. Which means that once you’ve been diagnosed with PTSD, in the eyes of a life insurance company, you’ll always be someone who has been diagnosed with PTSD.
And the main reason for this is because…
PTSD is a condition that can either persist continually or can go away only to resurface later on in one’s life. It is not uncommon for folks who have been diagnosed with PTSD to suffer symptoms years later as the result of another traumatic event of maybe even due to an “anniversary” trigger.
It should be noted that there are many medical conditions that are treated this same way by a life insurance company, so those with PTSD shouldn’t necessarily feel too bad.
Let’s consider someone who has suffered from a heart attack 10 years ago, this person may be perfectly health today, but in the eyes of an insurance company, he or she will always be suffering from heart disease.
So how can we improve the outlook of your life insurance application?
That’s easy, if possible, we need to demonstrate to the insurance companies that even though you’ve been diagnosed with PTSD in the past, you now have this condition under control and are doing well!
This can be accomplished by applying for a fully underwritten term or permanent life insurance policy that is going to require you to:
- Complete a thorough life insurance application.
- Take a medical exam.
- Allow the insurance company to order a prescription database check.
- And allow the insurance company to have access to your medical records so that you can document that you’re in good health.
Now it’s pretty clear why an insurance company would want to complete a medical exam, review your medical records and see what kinds of medications you are taking, but what most people wonder about at this is…
“What types of questions are they going to ask about my PTSD?”
Commonly asked questions when it comes to PTSD are:
- When were you first diagnosed with PTSD?
- Who diagnosed your PTSD? A general practitioner or a psychiatrist?
- How long have you been treating you PTSD?
- What treatment methods are you using?
- What medications if any are you using to treat you PTSD?
- Have you ever been hospitalized for you PTSD?
- Have you ever attempted suicide or contemplated suicide?
- Do you have any history of drug or alcohol abuse?
- Do you have any issue with your driving record such as a suspended license, multiple moving violations or DUI’s?
Establishing proper expectations…
At this point, insurance companies, and we here at JustBuryMe as well, will have a pretty good idea about whether or not you’ll be eligible for fully underwritten term or whole life insurance policy, as well as, what “rate class” you’ll most likely be eligible for.
That being said, it important to establish proper expectations and to understand that due to being diagnosed with PTSD, many of the “best” rate classes such as Preferred and Preferred Plus simply won’t be available to you.
There are however 14 different rate classes out there, and when it comes time to helping someone with PTSD, we generally like to shoot for a “Table B” rating.
Further, you can also benefit from simplified issue life insurance or guaranteed issue life insurance.
It is important you understand the difference between simplified issue vs guaranteed issue life insurance.
Which means that…
We’re also going to be looking at which life insurance companies offer the best “Table B” rating prices!
You see here at JustBuryMe, we operate as an independent life insurance brokerage that is capable of working with dozens of highly rated life insurance companies. So… We don’t have to rely on just one or two different life insurance companies when it comes to trying to help you find the “best” life insurance policy that you’ll be able to qualify for!
So, what are you waiting for? Give us a call today and see what we can do for you!
You may also be interested in reading JustBuryMe’s Best Final Expense and Burial Insurance Companies.