Keeping a pain journal establishes a record of the severity of symptoms and the impact the injury has on daily life. A personal injury attorney in Las Vegas can use this journal to support a personal injury claim. By recording this information, plaintiff’s establish when, where, how long, and what activities exacerbate or alleviate the pain. Every detail recorded within a pain journal creates a composite picture of the injury that plaintiff’s can use to recover compensation for their claim.
When and What to Include in a Pain Journal
When pursuing a personal injury claim in Nevada, it is important to start keeping a pain journal as soon as possible. Ideally, before ever leaving the hospital. While many people choose to purchase a dedicated notebook for their pain journal, it is also perfectly fine to do it via a computer.
Each entry should be dated and identify the symptoms experienced. This includes whether it is sharp pains, tingling sensations, sudden loss of mobility, etc. Identify the location of the pain, and its severity. This is usually done on scale of 1-10, with 10 indicating severe pain.
Next, it is advisable to record any information regarding triggers for the pain. For example, “Sharp pain felt in hips when lifting 5# sack of potatoes from the floor.” It is important to record the frequency of the pain and how long it lasts. Finally, it is advisable to record what treatments were administered to alleviate the symptom. For instance, “Applied cold compress to hip and took over the counter aspirin as recommended by the doctor. Pain lasted for 2 hours after onset.”
Many pain journals also include additional details. Often, this is information such as whether the injury impacted the ability to work or engage in activities with family and friends. A typical entry in this regard might be, “Pain was so severe I was unable to go swimming with my children. I also had to call in sick to work because I was unable to walk as required for my job as a floor supervisor.”
Many also contain information and communications sent from insurance companies or medical providers. This may include information about insurance coverage, recommended at-home therapies, prescription medications, physical therapy, etc. Recording this information provides a link between the pain, effectiveness of treatments, and the continued impact of the pain and injury on daily life and the ability to return to work following an accident.