No pain, no gain: how pain impacts us differently

Pain, although inevitable, is an interesting thing to me, personally. I find it quite fascinating how pain, experienced anywhere on our bodies, or in our minds, can be transmitted to our brain and cause it to signal the pain to our consciousness.

Probably not the textbook definition of how pain is processed, but close enough.

But why do some of us have a higher pain tolerance than others? An article from Medical Press may offer an answer.

Psychosocial, environmental, and genetic factor all come into play when analyzing how different people experience pain. Any painful experiences that occur throughout our lives do so “against a background of genes that make us more or less sensitive to pain,” the article states, and our mental and physical state, along with former experiences and environment can influence how we react to pain.

The article explains that up to 60 per cent of the inconsistencies that occur in the realm of pain is caused by inherited and genetic factors, just like hair colour, eye colour and height. Prior to reading this article, I was unaware that pain is something that can be passed along through reproduction and further inherited, but I guess this serves as one reason why some people are almost immune to pain, while others are overly sensitive.

I think I have a relatively high pain tolerance. I played rugby for years (which in itself is enough to force you to develop a high pain tolerance) and growing up on a farm, you learn to scrape your knees a few times and not get too upset about it. If I’m being honest, I find whiners to be excessively annoying (no offence intended), so perhaps that’s another reason why I’m pretty tolerant of pain.

Either way, this article is pretty interesting. Give it a read.

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