As an experienced Florida Social Security disability lawyer, I suggest that you keep at least one symptom diary to assist you in obtaining disability benefits in Florida.
A symptom diary can come in many written forms: notebook, journal, wall calendar, chart, or spreadsheet. Routinely recording the nature (frequency, duration, intensity, etc.) of your symptoms and the impact of your symptoms as they occur will serve as your “symptom diary.”
For example, pain is a disabling symptom of many impairments that result in Social Security benefits for Florida disability claimants. A pain diary will allow you to track your pain on a daily basis including where the pain localized, the intensity of the pain on a scale of 1-10, the duration of the pain, and what eventually alleviated the pain.
Besides pain, symptom diaries can be used to record other symptoms. For example, it may be appropriate for you to keep a fatigue diary, sleep diary, headache diary, hypoglycemic event diary, or an asthma/nebulizer diary.
There are several reasons that make a symptom diary important to the success of your case when it comes to the Social Security disability appeals process. First, your ability to give detailed testimony at your hearing will be a significant factor in the success of your claim. Second, the back log of Social Security disability claims results in a long wait between your initial application for benefits and the date of your hearing. Regardless of how sharp your memory is, your testimony will be more accurate, precise and, ultimately, more compelling, if you have a written record, such as a diary, on which to rely.
Contact experienced Florida disability lawyer Claudeth Henry to review the facts of your case, help you get started on a symptom diary, or to discuss your claim for benefits.