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DLA question please help!

SezeelsonSezeelson Posts: 133
edited 1. Aug 2014, 06:08 in Living with Arthritis archive
Ok,

In the morning, i am 'ok' and will walk my dog (will not be including dogs in my form).

In the evening, i am in agony, mainly my ankles and calve muscles. I am 'severe discomfort' before i even move let alone when i do actually walk!!

So, in the walking part of my form. Do i say, i can't walk at all 7 days a week for roughly 6 hours (til i go to bed at 10) and then explain in the box that i find walking easier AM but by PM i am crippled by pain.

Any help greatly appreciated!!

Comments

  • SezeelsonSezeelson Posts: 133
    edited 30. Nov -1, 00:00
    This an example of how i am doing the walking part of my form. The bullet points will be made into statements before actually finishing the form. I will describe how my walking fluctuates from AM to PM the MORE DETAIL section at the end of the walking section.

    Getting around outdoors

    Meters = 0
    Minutes = 0

    Describe your walking speed: Slow
    Describe the way you walk: Extremely poor

    How many days a week = 7
    Do you fall or stumble? Yes

    Why?

    *Bulky foot wear
    *Weakness
    *Muscle pain
    *Bad footing
    *Dizzy spells

    How often? Frequently on a daily basis

    Do you need help getting up? Yes

    I need help after falling, or even stumbling due to severe pain I sometimes experience I cannot get myself up unaided and I am at risk of falling again. I do not need help every single time I fall or stumble, but as it is a regular occurrence the potential is always there.

    Having someone with you outdoors

    Do you need someone with you? Yes
    Why? Anxiety and panic attacks, To make sure I am safe

    *panic attacks
    *Falling and stumbling
    *Past episodes of suicidal ideation’s
    *Psychomotor agitation

    More detail

    *easier to walk AM
    *how i walk AM
    *Times it takes to recover
    *detail pain PM
    *Restricted i become PM
  • trepolpentrepolpen Posts: 500
    edited 30. Nov -1, 00:00
    Sezeelson , what type of arthritis you got , as wih RA would be the other way around and stiff first thing

    myself I always get someone to help me with the forms , like CAB , or someone from carers support , they know how to put things & try to get some back up evidence like consultants letters / or other professions that you have seen
  • SezeelsonSezeelson Posts: 133
    edited 30. Nov -1, 00:00
    I have rheumatoid arthritis.

    I take a slow release tramadol, which helps me in the morning. By no means can i leap out of bed and sprint down to the news agents! but i certainly find walking easier early in the day (After i have done my yoga/stretches).

    It is like i am ok for 50% of the day, then my mood and energy levels plummet and pain levels increase.

    I have a new diet and a whole new lease on life, which has made miracle changes to my life, my body and how my disease effects me.
  • As5567As5567 Posts: 665
    edited 30. Nov -1, 00:00
    I personally would just tell them how it is at your worst. As soon as you tell them how you are on a good day they make assumptions up and use them against you.
  • bluebunnerbluebunner Posts: 43
    edited 30. Nov -1, 00:00
    DLA does not exist any more for new applicants, it is PIP now.

    In my experience and my opinion do not say you can't walk then describe walking ability whether earlier or later in the day. if you cannot walk then stick to that.

    It is not the condition, (arthritis) that gets the award but it is how it affects you. One person's problems do not apply to everyone so be yourself and describe how it all affects you and not anyone else. Tell the truth and you won't have to remember what you have said.

    You seem to have most of the application OK but please do not say you walk the dogs at all and stick to not walking at all.

    I put my application in last month and had a visit from ATOS last week, he was an OK kind of guy up front, very nice and asked a lot of questions referring to my application and he wrote loads of stuff down. I now await the result of his visit and report.

    You need to copy your form and keep it in case you get a visit, and prepare to offload your dogs onto a friend or relative for the period of the ATOS visit.

    Look at the PIP thread at the top and see my updates.

    Good luck.
  • SezeelsonSezeelson Posts: 133
    edited 30. Nov -1, 00:00
    bluebunner wrote:
    DLA does not exist any more for new applicants, it is PIP now.

    In my experience and my opinion do not say you can't walk then describe walking ability whether earlier or later in the day. if you cannot walk then stick to that.

    It is not the condition, (arthritis) that gets the award but it is how it affects you. One person's problems do not apply to everyone so be yourself and describe how it all affects you and not anyone else. Tell the truth and you won't have to remember what you have said.

    You seem to have most of the application OK but please do not say you walk the dogs at all and stick to not walking at all.

    I put my application in last month and had a visit from ATOS last week, he was an OK kind of guy up front, very nice and asked a lot of questions referring to my application and he wrote loads of stuff down. I now await the result of his visit and report.

    You need to copy your form and keep it in case you get a visit, and prepare to offload your dogs onto a friend or relative for the period of the ATOS visit.

    Look at the PIP thread at the top and see my updates.

    Good luck.

    Thank you :)

    I won't lie on my form, and i won't mention the dogs either as none are registered even though i have trained one of them to personally assist me and break my fall etc.

    The thing i am scared of though, saying i cannot walk at all, which is true for 50% of the day. If some one reports me or i get 'watched' and seen walking in the morning how am i going to explain myself? without it looking like i am being fraudulent?

    I still hurt, and still quite limited as i walk with a stick but i really enjoy being with my dogs which overrides the pain if that makes sense.

    I am so confused by all this :(

    Oh and it is a renewal, not a new claim. PIP hasn't been rolled out down here yet so it is still on DLA
  • bubbadogbubbadog Posts: 5,852
    edited 30. Nov -1, 00:00
    As others have said I would fill it out as if it was your worst day ever. If you fill it out including taking dogs for a walk and feeling good better certain times of the day they will assume your capable of working. And keep a copy of what you have wrote down for future forms so you don't trip up saying one thing on one form and another thing on another form.
  • stickywicketstickywicket Posts: 26,000 ✭✭✭
    edited 30. Nov -1, 00:00
    If you take your dogs out regularly you can't truthfully say that you can't walk at all outdoors. If they catch you lying on one question they'll naturally be less inclined to believe your answers on others. Why not enlist the help of CAB with filling out the form. Many others do.
    “There is always a well-known solution to every human problem - neat, plausible, and wrong.” H.L. Mencken
  • SezeelsonSezeelson Posts: 133
    edited 30. Nov -1, 00:00
    If you take your dogs out regularly you can't truthfully say that you can't walk at all outdoors. If they catch you lying on one question they'll naturally be less inclined to believe your answers on others. Why not enlist the help of CAB with filling out the form. Many others do.

    Yeah but i can't go out without the dogs.
    People have recommended i DO NOT mentions the dog as being able to care for an animal clearly means i am capable of full time work!!! lol

    I suffer terribly with anxiety, I cannot walk the streets without krippling anxiety and paranoia. I also have, or had rather, suicidal ideation's which i no longer get when i have him with me. I also fall over a lot, and he is trained by me to break my fall and to help me back on my feet which is a HUGE deal to me.

    I can't get him registered without paying out lots of money i don't have and even then i don't think he is legally and assistance dog.

    Do you see my dilemma?
    If my dogs went into boarding for a week, i would be housebound.
    But i can't mention the dog, but i would be lying is i said i can walk outdoors

    Not sure how CAB is going to help me with this though, I either mention the dog in my form or i give the impression i am capable of walking fine, which i am not.
  • stickywicketstickywicket Posts: 26,000 ✭✭✭
    edited 30. Nov -1, 00:00
    I do see your dilemma but, as I see it, if you tell the truth you'll worry about them not giving you the PIP and, if you lie, you'll worry about them finding out and not giving you it.

    It seems to me that you don't physically need the dogs for walking outside but you do need them emotionally to prevent panic attacks. CAB might be able to help you word your application to reflect this.
    “There is always a well-known solution to every human problem - neat, plausible, and wrong.” H.L. Mencken
  • As5567As5567 Posts: 665
    edited 30. Nov -1, 00:00
    You should try and seek help on trying to fit the dogs into the form maybe, you also need to remember that your condition varies day to day, just like the weather we can have 1 day sunny the next a horrible storm, after that maybe a week of sunshine if we're lucky? and then 4 weeks of more storms. When I got my last award for 3 years they put on the decision that they understand my condition varies day from day and certain periods I may require less help than others, they said this has been taken into account and for that reason they gave me the benefit.

    Also the more information you give the less likely you are to have a visit off anyone, I have never had any home or office visits for DLA nor ESA, it might be down to luck or not, but I always send in every single letter I have from doctors/physio/feet people/assessments done for university.
  • salamandersalamander Posts: 2,028
    edited 30. Nov -1, 00:00
    DLA is not just about mobility, it's about other things too. Currently, there are two components for mobility. Lower and higher rate. You can still get the lower rate if you can walk (if you have other factors such as pain/fatigue blah blah) but you probably won't get the higher mobility rate. There is no need to mention the dogs at all, unless you want to say you can't go out without a dog because of xxxxx……. You should tell them you walk with a stick and for limited times, etc. Take the other's advice and go to CAB to help with the wording.
  • SezeelsonSezeelson Posts: 133
    edited 30. Nov -1, 00:00
    Thank you so much,

    Salamander!
    You have made a perfect point!! I was so worked up i didn't even consider what i am actually trying to achieve!

    I personally do not feel i deserve the high rate mobility component because physically, I can get around for the most part with a stick and joint supports if necessary and of course i will include on my bad days i cannot walk outdoors at all but realistically this is... once a week? on a 'better' week without weather changes or other factors.

    So, i just need to make sure the information i provide makes me eligible for low rate of the mobility component.

    I suppose the biggest part of my conditions is my mental health. I have recently been dropped from my rhuemy and had my medication cancelled due to the severity of my anxiety. I just couldn't physically get to my appointments.
    I have been referred for CBT and everything but it is a slow process. I am on a strict Paleo diet which has made the world of difference to me and let me figure out i am totally intolerant to wheat and gluten!!
  • SloshSlosh Posts: 3,194
    edited 30. Nov -1, 00:00
    I downloaded so useful advice which advised keeping a diary for a couple of days as evidence and also said that for fluctuating conditions you get points awarded if they are there forvat least 50% of the time. Re your diet, I would suggest you request a referral to a dietician for advice and also for allergy testing. I have heard of tbe Paleo diet but think it is important to get advice. In terms of gluten get this assessed properly in case you are a celiac, allergic to gluten as with an allergy you can get a range of gluten free products free on prescription so to speak.
    He did not say you will not be storm tossed, you will not be sore distressed, you will not be work weary. He said you will not be overcome.
    Julian of Norwich
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