sleep foundation
The National Sleep Foundation

Medically Reviewed by

The National Sleep Foundation

Written by

The National Sleep Foundation

What is the RLS Symptom Diary? The RLS Symptom Diary is a convenient place to write down details about your daily symptoms, such as what time you first start to notice them and how long they last, and it is also a good way to keep track of the symptoms you experience. We have also created the RLS Symptom Diary Summary to help you pull together quickly what you have been experiencing. This may also help you to initiate the discussion with your health care professional about your symptoms, which is the first step to a diagnosis and being able to manage the condition. What should I put in my RLS Symptom Diary? Here are some things you should write down in your RLS Symptom Diary everyday:

  • The time you noticed symptoms began
  • What you were doing when the symptoms started
  • The intensity of the symptoms
  • What the symptoms felt like (write a short description)
  • Where you felt the symptoms (like in your legs or your arms)
  • How long the symptoms lasted
  • What helped relieve the symptoms (if anything)
  • The estimated amount of exercise you did that day (like taking walks, gardening, or riding a bike)
  • The time you went to bed
  • The estimated time that you fell asleep
  • How many times you got out of bed during the night and how long you were up (if applicable)
  • Medications and doses taken
  • The time you woke up in the morning
  • Whether or not you needed an alarm clock to wake up
  • Each time you took a nap during the day and for how long
  • How you felt throughout the day

What do I do with my RLS Symptom Diary? After keeping your RLS Symptom Diary for about two weeks, take a look back at what you wrote. You may find that some of your habits, such as drinking caffeine or exercising close to bedtime, can be easily corrected. You may also learn that there are certain habits or behaviors that make your symptoms worse, or others that provide symptom relief, such as taking a short walk after dinner.