When you visit your GP, specialist, Parkinson's nurse or other health professional, you often don't have a lot of time to talk in detail about how you are. You may also see them when you're having a good day but the reality is that most of the time you are finding things difficult and need more help.
A diary can be an effective way of letting someone know what problems you’re experiencing, the changes in your condition from day to day or over a period of time, and how well your medication is controlling your symptoms. It can also help remind you of things you want to discuss during your appointment that you may otherwise forget.
You can also use it to record any embarrassing issues that you want help with but find difficult to ask about.
If you are applying for welfare benefits, a diary can also be useful for keeping track of the different stages of the application process. Keeping a record of how your condition affects you will be helpful if you are asked to explain this on a benefits claim form.
You can use any kind of diary or notebook to write down what you do and how you feel over the course of each day.
If you have a computer, smart phone or tablet device, you may prefer to keep an electronic diary or use an app. If you have problems writing or typing, you could also record your diary using a mobile phone or recording device (using video or audio). Use whatever suits you best.
If you have a carer, it may be helpful for them to complete a diary too, particularly if your needs are being assessed together.
What should I record in my diary?
You can include a range of symptoms or issues in your diary, depending on why you are writing one. Here we've listed some questions to help you think about what you may want to include.
We know lots of people would rather have something in their hands to read rather than look at a screen, so you can order printed copies of our information by post, phone or email.
Last updated July 2017. We review all our information within 3 years. If you'd like to find out more about how we put our information together, including references and the sources of evidence we use, please contact us at [email protected]