Augusta Social Security disability attorneys explain how a disability diary helps your case
Sometimes we ask our Georgia and South Carolina Social Security disability applicant clients to keep a written record of their symptoms in a disability diary.
The purpose of keeping a symptoms or disability diary is to keep track of the frequency of your problems and to remember all the details to be able to describe them to the Social Security Administration at your disability hearing.
What do you record in the diary?
The purpose of this diary is to keep a record of your symptoms to help you when you have to describe the intensity and frequency of those symptoms to the Social Security Administration. That means it is not the kind of narrative diary about your life that you might think of when people normally talk about a diary.
That means that you don’t necessarily need to write a paragraph about the way you are feeling. Although that might be helpful, many people find it very difficult.
A much simpler type of symptom diary is to develop a chart or form that has easy check-off boxes that will keep track of symptoms or events.
Who will see your diary?
Your symptom diary is just for you, your attorney, and your doctor. Do not show it to other people, and do not make it public.
Some people find it convenient to keep their diary on their computer. This can work fine, but do not post it as a blog. Keep it as part of your private records that you show to your attorney.
A sample chart as a diary
You can make almost anything you want for a symptom diary because there is no required form. Different people find that different types of charts work better for them.
You may also find that you want to keep more than one chart because there may be more than one thing that you want to keep track of. For example, you might want to record the medications that you take, or the times that you experience back pain, or how far you can walk, or how long you can stand without sitting. All of these things might be on different charts.
Also, depending on what it is that you are keeping track of, you might want your chart to record things by the hour, by the day, or by the week.
Here is a sample medication diary. Use this chart to record the medications that you take each week. Check off what time of day that you took each medication. If the size of the dosage changes then you should include that in the record.