How to Please the Social Security Gods

Artwork: Robin Mead

Here are five doctor rules you might not know. If you can follow these rules, the Social Security Gods will be happy.

Please follow these rules before you apply, while you apply, and after your are approved, and for the rest of your life or as long as you are on disability.

Five Social Security Rules For Doctor Visits

The Social Security Gods will be happy if:

💮 Your doctor is an acceptable medical source.

💮 You are seeing a doctor regularly (whatever amount your doctor recommends)

💮 You are following your doctor’s treatment suggestions. Your records don’t say “non-compliant.” According to the Social Security policies, it does not matter what the treatment is, as long as your doctor recommends it and writes it in your records.

💮 You are talking to your doctor at every visit about how severe your symptoms are and how this affects your functioning, and your doctor has written about this in your notes.

💮 It is better not to cancel appointments, if possible.

If you can’t see a doctor regularly, or can’t follow treatment, in some situations this is acceptable. See more below.

New Applications

Ideally, Social Security will took see if your medical records will indicate that your condition is severe. They will also look to see if your records contain any kind of lab tests or medical evidence, and if they regularly contain notes about your ability to function (sit, stand, walk, lift, concentrate, focus, remember, etc)


Social Security will look to see if you your medical records indicate that you are being treated for the condition(s) you were approved for, and that these conditions have not improved. For example: If you got approved for Bipolar, and then later you got cancer, the simplest way to pass medical reviews is if you are still in treatment for Bipolar. They will not look at the cancer unless there is a problem.

Having Problems?

If you have a good reason for not following treatment, please let your doctor know the reason. If possible, check that this reason is written in your records. Good reasons may include no money, no health insurance, or too many side effects.

Can’t get to a doctor?

If you haven’t been going to a doctor, the best thing you can do is start going immediately. You may still be able to turn thing around. If you can’t get to the doctor because of finances, insurance, transportation, or being homebound, check out How to Get to the Doctor When You Can’t Get to the Doctor.

Meds not working out?

If you need to stop meds because of side effects, try to talk to your doctor about this if possible. You are allowed to stop medications. It is only a problem if your doctor writes down that you “refused treatment” or were “non-compliant” or decided to stop taking medication that the doctor thinks you should continue taking.

If you do not like your doctor’s treatment, you have the right to switch to a doctor who recommends a different treatment. Very important: new doctor must be an acceptable medical source. Some people switch from a psychiatrist to a psychologist if they want less psych meds.

Want to make the Social Security Gods love you even more?

New applications: How to Work with Your Doctor to Get Great Disability Documentation

Reviews: Everything You Need to Know About Social Security Disability Reviews

Updated April 2018. Please share questions, stories, ideas below. 🐳🐬💙

4 thoughts on “How to Please the Social Security Gods”

  1. Im homeless and have to keep traveling because society wont let disableds live indoors. I have to go campground to campground for 2 years. Ssa is doing every review type they can on me and i cant go to any mental health clinics because they only take people willing to live in shelters so they can be treated like dog shit. On top of that they diagnose stuff way far off of reality if your homeless because of bigotry. I dont have any records and cant get any made. I WILL starve to death and die once they cut me off because no one helps me with anyone and no one will hire me.


    1. I’m sorry to hear your situation. If you can go to google and type in “supportive housing” and the name of your state or any state you want to live in. There may be waiting lists, but I hope you can find something.

      I’ve met other people in your situation who had great experiences in supportive housing. They may also have caseworkers there that can connect you to mental health services.


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