Degenerative conditions - does disability benefit exist in France?

I have a congenital scoliosis which although has caused lots of problems over the years, has never been bad enough to make me qualify for disability benefits. BUT… as I approach 50, it’s becoming more intolerabe so that I often have to end my day’s work at 1pm or even that some days I can’t work. The French have given me free physio massage, which helps enormously with the pain, but the condition can’t be treated and will only deteriorate with age…so when do I bother asking for disability benefit? I wouldn’t bother when I was in the UK as I know you need to be almost dead to receive it these days. My question is…are the French more generous or caring?

I’ve an appointment with an assistante sociale at the end of the month. I’m going to be asking about retraining grants to help me change my job and transport methods and to find grants for equipment to help me with lifting at work. I’m also going to ask about benefits…but it’s more help to work that I’m interested in. I’ll take any help that’s going though. I do get free physiotherapy and have had an x-ray recently so am waiting to see a specialist…plus I have a bit more confidence in the French healthcare system than the british one…I used to be a nurse!

I have M.E. and Im unable to work. At the moment I still qualify for the old Incapacity Benefit from England and its now topped up by Allocation Adulte Handicappe. The system is changing in England. Here in France I think it depends on which department you live in as some are more generous than others. I have other friends in France who also have M.E. and they have not been sucessful in getting AAH.
I also have a priority card which I can use in public places and on transport. That is very useful and worth having.