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Is sickle cell disorder a disability or not?

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Our opinions on arguments that happen in our daily lives are just results of mostly our own personal experiences and partly that of others. When we discuss whether sickle cell is a disability or not, it is important to put faith aside and be more realistic. I have heard many people say sickle cell is not a disability because they reject it with faith. Faith is important yet let’s be realistic as well.

According to the English dictionary, disability is the absence of competent physical, intellectual, or moral power, means, fitness and the like.

In United states of America, people living with sickle cell are entitled to the getting the disability benefits although under some conditions. You must meet a criteria but that is a society where things are the hospital system is pretty much easier compared to Africa.

sickle cell, a disability or not

I have been on both sides of the coin on this subject matter. I once agreed that sickle cell is not a disability and I am not disabled but not based on faith.

As a young boy in secondary school, I never knew I had sickle cell. I was like the smallest and skinniest boy in class, I never knew it was a complication from living with sickle cell until my late years of secondary school. Then, all of the stature, fatigue, pampering from some teachers all of it began to make sense. But even after I knew everything about my Genotype nothing really changed, I was still that boy that played football (even though I hated it) and did everything I wanted to do. So, I couldn’t say my sickle cell was in any way a disability.

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However, in 2016, I was diagnosed with avascular necrosis, a sickle cell complication. It didn’t take long before I was advised to start using a walking stick and then I began to limp due to pain in my hip.

One day, I was discussing with friends and one of the them made the popular statement there is ability in disability. That statement made me have a rethink, I’m using a walking stick, I’m limping when I walk, I can’t run. That describes a disabled as well.

Since then, I believe that sickle cell might not seem like a disability but it has complications that can make an able man turn disabled in a short time. Above all, it is important to hold on to the fact that disability is a thing of the mind.

Do you or anyone close to you live with sickle cell disorder? Do you consider it a disability? Share your thoughts below.

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