So your doctor has asked you to keep a pain diary after an injection, or perhaps you’ve been asked to chronicle your pain on an initial visit to your doctor and you’re stumped. “I don’t know. It hurts everywhere. All the time”, you say. Well, although that may be true, being able to more specifically classify your pain helps your provider diagnose the underlying issue(s). It also helps you and your doctor determine what is helping and what isn’t, and then use that information to guide your treatment plan.
So what is a pain diary?
A pain diary is a written document tracking your pain symptoms throughout the day or week. It can be used to track what is making your pain better or worse, the characteristic of your pain, the severity of your pain, how it changes throughout the day, and also your response to medications, injections, exercise, or alternative treatments. You can print and fill out my sample Pain Diary here, make your own in a notebook, or use an app. I kept my document very simple intentionally, because sometimes the more things you need to fill out, the harder it is to actually stick with it. However, if you feel motivated to fill out more information, such as mood, hours slept, exercise, what daily activities or hobbies you were able to do, etc. – please do!
There’s an app for that!
If a pen and pad isn’t your thing, there are a variety of pain diary apps to choose from. Some can even print the data you input into a document so that you can show it to your doctor. Most of them cost around $5, however, there are a few free options as well, such as Chronic Pain Tracker Lite http://chronicpaintracker.com and Catch My Pain (www.catchmypain.com).
Disclaimer: This website (including all pages and blog posts) is not intended to replace the services of a physician, nor does it constitute a doctor-patient relationship. Information is provided for informational purposes only and is not a substitute for professional medical advice. You should not use the information on this website for diagnosing or treating a medical or health condition. To schedule an appointment at Revitalize Medical Center, please call (847) 834-4018.