What is a sleep diary?

A sleep diary is a daily record designed to gather information about your daily sleep pattern.1 The diary enables you to record important sleep-related information, such as the quality of your sleep the night before.2 The diary also allows you to collect and monitor information on other factors that may be impacting your sleep such as medication, exercise, and beverage consumption.2

Why should I keep a sleep diary?

It can be difficult to remember everything that you ate, drank or did over the previous week that could have affected your sleep. It can also be difficult to remember how many hours you slept every night and how refreshed you felt when you woke up in the morning.

A sleep diary is an important tool for evaluating your sleep.2 Doctors often request a sleep diary in order to make sleep-related diagnoses.3 By keeping a record of sleep, the diary makes it possible for you to see how much sleep you’re actually getting.2 A sleep record also can also help you identify sleep disruptions and other factors that can influence your sleep quality.2

How do I complete a sleep diary?

  1. Download your sleep diary from a reputable source (like the one available by licking the button below)
  2. Print out a few copies
  3. Fill in the date and tick the relevant week circle
  4. Keep the sheet next to your bed with a pen for easy access
  5. Take a few minutes each morning and evening to complete the questions laid out in the sleep diary for at least one week.
    • There are seven days already marked out and ready to complete – you don’t need to wait for a Monday to start – you can start today.
    • Fill in one side of the diary before going to bed and the reverse side in the morning on awakening
  6. At the end of the week (or seven days), review your diary to see if there are any patterns that might be affecting your sleep and then you can systematically “weed out” these bad habits as you go along
  7. Once completed, you can also take the diary with you to your next doctor’s appointment

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