Why do we feel pain? This is one of the most commonly asked questions. Generally speaking, pain occurs when the brain detects an injury in the body. Pain's intensity can be related to the severity of the condition.
How Does Pain Develop?
Pain, our body's alarm system, is both a tangible and an emotional experience.
Everyone’s ability to feel and tolerate pain varies according to each situation and person. For instance, some people say injections hurt less when they don’t see the needle coming than when they actually see it puncture their skin. For others, injections may only be a minor annoyance, regardless of whether they watch or not.
In some situations, you may not feel much pain right then, even in cases of severe injury. You may have heard stories of football players who score touchdowns with a sprained ankle or ballet dancers who finish the show with a damaged knee.
While unpleasant, pain is actually our body's way of letting us know something is wrong. It is important to consult your doctor regarding your pain, especially if it is severe, keeps coming back, or persists.
We can feel pain from a wide range of sources:
- Physical: a poke, muscle strain or cut for example.
- Chemical: from the way a substance like acid reacts to our skin, for instance.
- Thermal: think of the pain from a sunburn or from touching something hot, for example.
When tissue is sufficiently stimulated, it locally produces substances called prostaglandins, which can produce inflammation. This results in pain, a rise in temperature or swelling of the affected area. By inhibiting prostaglandin production, Bayer® Aspirin can relieve minor aches and pains.
Learn About Different Kinds of Pain
For each kind of pain, there are different ways of finding relief. You may not always find relief in the same way, but knowing your options gives you the power to fight back.
From minor headaches caused by eyestrain to sinus headaches caused by congestion – and every other variety in between, nearly everyone has experienced some kind of headache. So, what can you do?
People suffering from headaches may benefit from these helpful tips:
- Identify what triggers the headache
- Minimize your daily stress level
- Take the right pain reliever when the headache starts. Bayer® Aspirin is proven to effectively relieve tension headaches. Be sure to read and follow label directions.
In any case, remember that if you suspect you have a serious injury, the pain lasts for a long time, or keeps coming back – even if it is mild pain – you should consult a medical doctor immediately.
Both genuine athletes and "weekend warriors" may occasionally experience muscle pains. Sport-related strains and trauma trigger inflammatory responses that induce pain. But pain is not only felt by athletes. There are many familiar daily situations that result in muscle pain:
- Poor posture: sitting incorrectly for hours at the office or lifting heavy objects without the proper stance.
- Repetitive movements: at work, in the garden, while using the computer.
Muscle aches develop primarily in the neck, shoulder and back region. In order to avoid this cycle that produces and sustains muscle pain, here are some preventative tips:
- When training for physical activity, increase intensity gradually, according to your current abilities.
- Warm up before exercise for 10 to 15 minutes, try a slow jog or quick walk.
- Get adequate sleep: good sleep in a quiet and peaceful environment is essential to good health.
- Exercise equipment and technique should be appropriate for the activity you will perform.
- The level of activity should be appropriate for your physical abilities.
- When minor aches and pains appear, Bayer® Aspirin – one of the most studied non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAID) in history – is a safe and effective remedy when taken as directed. Be sure to read and follow label directions.
In any case, remember that if you suspect you have a serious injury, muscle pain that lasts a long time, or keeps coming back – even if it is mild pain – you should consult a medical doctor immediately.
If you feel back (lumbar) pain, you are not alone. Nearly everyone at some point has back pain that may interfere with work, daily activities or recreation. Vertebrae, muscles, nerves and joints are all intricately related throughout our backs. Therefore, when muscles or joints are weak or fatigued – particularly due to a rarely exercised spine or poor posture – pain can occur throughout the back.
Some tips to help protect your back:
- When lifting heavy objects that are below knee level, bend your knees to leverage your leg muscles, rather than bending at the waist.
- Being overweight is related to an increased risk of developing herniated disks (the soft "cushions" between the bones of the spine) and other back problems. When a disk between two bones in the spine presses on the nerves around the backbone, it is called a herniated disk. For your spine’s sake, keep your weight suitable for your body.
- In order to give your back a good rest at night, the best way to sleep is on your side with your knees bent and a pillow under your head. Some people get good results by placing a pillow or other soft support between their knees.
- When minor aches and pains appear, Bayer® Aspirin – one the most studied non-steroidal anti-inflammatory pain relievers in history – is a safe and effective aid to help relieve your pain. Be sure to read and follow label directions.
If you feel severe back pain, if pain does not ease within a few days, or keeps coming back – even if it is mild – you should consult a medical doctor immediately.
Minor Arthritis Pain
Osteoarthritis or OA (the degeneration of cartilage that connects bone joints) is one of the ten most disabling diseases in developed countries. It's estimated that 27 million Americans are affected by OA, which can be very challenging and hamper daily life. Please make sure you see your doctor to get a diagnosis of your condition.
Tips to help relieve minor pain of arthritis:
- Always use your bigger joints to carry heavy objects: for instance, use your arms, instead of your hands, to lift and move large items.
- Excess weight may worsen joint damage and makes it more difficult to recover. For your joints' sake, keep your weight suitable for your body type, height, gender and age.
- Vary the way you do different tasks, to avoid using the same joints' all the time.
- If you have minor arthritis pain, Bayer® Aspirin can provide fast, effective pain relief. Be sure to read and follow label directions.