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SSD benefits for kids based on a failure to thrive

On Behalf of | Apr 15, 2020 | Social Security Disability | 0 comments

Many people in Douglasville may think that Social Security Disability benefits are only available to adults whose disabling conditions make them unable to work. Yet such assistance is also offered to anyone impacted financially by another’s disability. 

This includes parents with children who suffer from disabilities. Indeed, according to information shared by the Social Security Administration, as of 2016, there were over 44,100 SSD recipients under the age of 18 in the state of Georgia alone. Oftentimes the need for help for parents with kids struggling with physical issues is apparent right from a child’s birth. 

Failure to thrive 

The definition of the medical condition of “failure to thrive” is a child consistently not growing or maintaining a healthy weight. Often there is an underlying health issue that causes this problem, and addressing this issue can often require extensive medical treatment (and, by extension, an extensive investment of both time and resources on the part of a child’s parents). 

Failure to thrive is a condition for which a child can qualify for SSD benefits. The criteria to do so are in the SSA’s Listing of Impairments. These include a child demonstrating developmental delays (diagnosed with the backing of an accepted medical source) that places the child’s development at least two standard deviations below the expected mean for their age, or multiple recognized delays that occur at least 120 days apart and place the child at below the two-thirds percentile for their respective age group. 

Delayed growth as both an infant and a toddler 

Additionally, for a child to qualify for benefits based on a failure to thrive, they must register three separate height tor birth measurements or BMI measurements that place them in the bottom third percentile for their ages groups from birth to two years of age or between the ages of 2 to 3, respectively. 


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