On April 3, 2005, Chris Hayden was in Iraq securing the area while his company commander tried to convince a local Iraqi leader to stop delivering anti-American messages during prayers. He heard an engine approaching at high speed, then felt the blast wave from a vehicle borne IED. He suffered TBI and the moment re-plays over and over in his mind. April 3, 2005 was his father’s birthday.
For years after returning from Iraq, Hayden drifted. Holding a job and maintaining a stable life was very difficult. In trying to cope with the effects of his combat experience, Hayden returned to Indiana and has written a book about PTSD and TBI called It All Fades. It is his personal therapy to share his experiences. He tried all the recommended ways to heal from PTSD and TBI – counseling, pharmaceuticals, individual therapy; but none seemed effective. So, the book, It All Fades, is his effort to gather his thoughts and emotions into a narrative form. The hope is that the book will help readers understand PTSD and help other veterans.
The VA disability compensation program is intended to fill the “wage gap” that a disability creates. The disability impairs the veterans occupational capability, and – therefore – reduces the wage that veteran could, on average, earn if the disability did not exist. Hayden has struggled with the VA compensation program, which does provide disability compensation for the occupational impairment from PTSD and TBI.
Like Hayden, many veterans conclude that all the recommended treatments for PTSD and TBI does not seem to help. The occupational impairment often is not reduced by various kinds of therapy. Sometimes the VA will even try to reduce benefits by arguing that therapy and treatment have reduced the disability’s severity. The rules governing reduction of benefits are detailed and involve how long the veteran has been receiving compensation benefits. For more information about Chris Hayden’s writing as therapy and his efforts to obtain compensation, see the Indianapolis Star, July 28, 2013.
VA Disability Compensation for TBI and PTSD
If you’re suffering, please learn more about VA disability benefits for TBI and PTSD. If you need help or feel you have not been awarded the proper benefits, contact our lawyers for veterans. We offer a free evaluation of your situation and, hopefully, some peace of mind. You can find Chris Hayden’s book about PTSD and TBI on Amazon and elsewhere.