Among the least-understood disabilities are mood disorders. The phrase itself is not particularly descriptive; one expert likens the fluidity of diagnosis as with cancer. There is not simply one kind of cancer; for example, skin cancer is very different from lung cancer, which is very different from breast cancer. These cancers function differently and attack different parts of the body. In a similar fashion, a mood disorder could refer to any number of things.
Depending on the type and severity of mood disorder, a person might be eligible to receive Social Security Disability benefits. Mental illness can be a crippling disorder that can prevent an otherwise able-bodied person from working. To the sufferer, a mental illness is just as debilitating as a physical illness when it comes to being able to work.
Unfortunately for many people who suffer from mood disorders, inquisitive people can speculate about what a person is suffering from without truly understanding it. This appears to be the case with U.S. Rep. Jesse Jackson Jr. Jackson recently announced that he was being treated at a facility for a mood disorder. Now news has come that Jackson has been transferred to the world-renowned Mayo Clinic in Minnesota for inpatient treatment of both depression and a gastrointestinal problem.
The physical aspect of Jackson's woes had not been made public before, but his mood disorder had already been responsible for a seven-week leave of absence from his congressional duties. A sitting congressman taking so much time away during an election year would seem to indicate that his issues are real and serious.
Source: The Associated Press, "Jackson move to Mayo could point to complications," Jason Keyser, July 28, 2012