Everyone has experienced pain at some point in their lives, but did you know that pain is still something of a mystery to scientists and doctors? As it turns out, the pain response is as complex as the organ responsible for it and filled with as many mysteries.
1. It’s Actually in Your Head
The brain is where pain comes from and not the injured part of your body. The brain tells you it hurts so that you avoid repeated injury.
2. Pain From an Injury is Subjective
Everyone processes pain differently; someone with a broken arm may describe their pain as less than someone getting a flu shot.
3. Just Because it Looks Like it Should Hurt, Doesn’t Mean it Does
Studies have shown that many people who don’t complain of pain actually have what doctors would consider injuries.
4. Depression and Anxiety Make Pain Worse
A recent study has shown that those diagnosed with depression and anxiety before surgery reported having more long-term pain afterward.
5. Your Environment Can Cause You More Pain
Being at work or in stressful situations can cause you to feel more pain because the brain is attempting to protect you from what it sees as a dangerous environment.
6. Understanding Pain May Reduce It
Studies have shown that those who are educated about the nature of pain tend to seek treatment for it at a much lower rate. This is referred to as Psychologically Informed Physical Therapy.
7. Our Brains Can Convince Us That We Have Pain in Amputated Limbs
The brain can get tricked into believing that its body is still whole and can cause referred pain in the amputated region. This can be corrected through Graded Motor Imagery, or ”Mirror Therapy,” to restore neuroplasticity.
8. Pain Can Alter Your Sense of Direction
Pain can cause the brain’s roadmap of the body to become clouded which can make it difficult to determine left from right.
9. We Don’t Know If We All Feel Pain the Same Way
There is no scientific means for knowing what someone’s pain tolerance is or even how it compares to your own.
If you suffer from chronic pain and are interested in learning how physical therapy can get you back on the path to well-being, please visit our site or call 407-303-8080.