Everyone experiences physical pain at some point in time. Although unwelcomed, pain is an extremely important bodily function vital to our health.
There are several misconceptions regarding pain and what it actually means. Here are 6 rules of pain.
- Pain is an output of the brain.
- Although we experience the feeling of pain in different regions of the body, pain is generated always in the brain. The brain is the control and interpretation centre of the body
- Pain experience and damage to the body are not equal.
- Have you ever banged your shin on a coffee table? It’s excruciating for the first two minutes and then the pain drops significantly. The damage to your shin is the same yet the amount of pain you experience drastically changes.
- Pain is influenced by your moods and thoughts.
- Pain is less like a thermometer and more like a discussion where parts of your brain vote on how much pain to express. Regardless of the injury, pain experience can increase if the injury has significant financial implications, or if you are scared about it being a serious injury. Likewise, pain experience can significantly drop if in a present environment such as a social event.
- New pain act as natural protection against danger or injury.
- Pain is a good thing. Without it there would be significantly less motivation to avoid and address potentially damaging issues to the body. It serves as our body’s natural defence promoting longevity.
- Long term chronic pain is a result of an oversensitive nervous system which no longer warns against damage.
- Sometimes our detection system malfunctions where pain still presents after the initial injury is gone. This type of pain can be confusing as listening to pain normally is beneficial
- Many modalities of treatment including physiotherapy are able to address these issues.
Pain is a complex topic which has many reasons for its presence, physiotherapy and other modalities of health care at able to assess why your pain exists, help understand what your pain means, and help you remove or reduce the pain you are in.