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Cerebral palsy consists of  a broad group of movement disorders resulting in many abnormalities. There may be signs of difficulty walking, muscle stiffness, seizures, mental, hearing and visual problems. It is caused by brain damage occuring during pregnancy. Symptoms can vary greatly, the affected person may show only mild impairments, while another may display great loss of function. 

The cause may be due to a number of factors including infections affecting brain development during pregnancy such as German measles(Rubella) or Chickenpox(Varicella). Both conditions can be prevented with a vaccine. Other conditions which may result in a higher risk of the disease are premature birth, head injuries and low birth weight,  There are also other factors which may predispose to this complication. Sometimes, the cause is unknown.  There is no cure for the condition. About 50% of people use some form of an aid in walking such as a cane, walker or leg braces. 

If one suffers from significant difficulty in walking, using their hands for grasping and performing activities such as writing or picking up small objects, speaking, hearing or seeing, then applying for social security disability benefits should be considered.  If an individual is younger, that is, under 50 years of age, one must demonstrate great difficulty in performing  usual everyday activities.  

In general, Social Security sets very specific rules for one to be granted benefits:

 1. Mentally, one must show an IQ of 70 or less.

2. Significant problems in communication due to speech, hearing or vision.

3. Great difficulty in ability to stand and walk: requires a walker or wheelchair. 

4. Significant problems using one’s hands and arms. 

Because the application process is difficult, it would be very helpful to use an attorney familiar with disability cases.