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Woman with anxiety disorder opens baklava bakery

To those who do not have it, social anxiety disorder may be hard to understand. How can a person who appears to be otherwise healthy be trapped in his or her home, or subject to terror so severe that he or she feels like he or she is dying?

Anxiety and panic disorders affect 18 percent of Americans, making it the most common type of mental illness in the country, according to WebMD. More than regular anxiety that sometimes comes up in everyday life, an anxiety disorder can interfere with the patient’s life. For some people, their disorder interferes with their ability to work. They may turn to Social Security Disability benefits to make up for their lost income.

One woman who received SSD benefits for her social anxiety disorder was able to return to work as the owner of a bakery. Before that, the condition had a profound effect on her life. She moved to a small town to try to deal with it, but later moved to a larger city. At one point, she was terrified to leave her house, forcing her to stop working as a waitress.

As part of her recovery, the woman started baking, especially baklava, the Greek delicacy. After her son was born, she wanted to return to work. She recently opened a shop called Bubba Baklava, which sells baklava to local restaurants.

It is heartening to hear about someone with a mental condition being able to return to the workforce. But for some people, it may be years before that is possible, if it ever is. For those with sufficient work history and a qualifying condition, SSD can help prevent a family living with disability from financial misfortune.

Source: Daily Nebraskan, “Woman overcomes social anxiety disorder to create baklava business,” Grace Solem-Pfeiffer, April 24, 2014

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