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Keep a Journal to Strengthen Your Social Security Disability Application

When you apply for disability benefits, one method that can help you strengthen your Social Security Disability application is keeping a journal detailing the extent of your injury/disability and how it is affecting your everyday life. Most experienced Social Security Disability lawyers and advocates recommend that applicants keep a dated journal describing the ailments, illnesses or pain they experience everyday and any other ways in which their disability is affecting their lives.

You should include in your journal all the things that you cannot do now because of your disability. You should also include the time and date of incidents/occurrences linked to your disability, for example, the occurrence of seizures, headaches or episodes of other weakening bodily pain. You should note how long the events last and make sure to state what circumstances trigger your pain and if any medications you have been prescribed helps. Also, list the medicines that you have taken and mention whether they have caused any side effects. Writing down which parts of the body are aching as well as describing the nature of the pain can also help you effectively depict your pain.

Providing sufficient information about your disability case will help the judge decide if you should be awarded Social Security Disability Insurance (SSDI) or Supplemental Security Income (SSI) benefits. Keep in mind that describing your pain in simple words is not enough. You have to write down everything that you are experiencing because of your ailments. Be as descriptive as possible without coming across as over-dramatic.

Pain can be difficult to describe since it can’t be felt by others and, therefore, is subjective. Hence, a judge may not understand how severe your pain really is, and the more detailed the account of your pain you can give, the better.

Such records can be very helpful especially for certain impairments like fibromyalgia, chronic fatigue syndrome, depression, chronic pain and anxiety. One possible route to a favorable decision for such Social Security Disability claims is to make the judge understand that you aren’t able to work because of your ailments. In your journal, you should explain how your disability is preventing you from working. Once the judge sees that you can’t continue with your work due to your injury, he will be more inclined to rule in your favor. Keeping a journal can, therefore, be quite beneficial to getting a beneficial ruling.

You need to elaborate and describe your condition effectively in order to win your disability case, as this could not only help the judge in making a decision but can also help the physicians, caseworkers and others who are assigned to your case to understand fully everything that you are facing everyday and how your pain restricts your functioning. Your ability to describe your pain effectively is very important to getting a favorable ruling for your Social Security Disability claim.

There’s no need to prepare your journal in a formal writing style. Just keep it simple yet descriptive, and note your everyday feelings and symptoms of pain and how they affect your everyday life. Carefully choose your words especially if it relates to depicting how you feel. By providing a substantial view of your current condition, you can greatly improve your chances of being awarded disability benefits.