There is nothing funny about pain. Oh wait.

-Written by Dr. Ankit

Greetings deer readers. I’ve been assigned to blog about pain today, as it (probably) is World Pain Day/Week/Month or may be ‘The Year of Pain’ according to the Chinese calendar. If it is not, no need to worry – we’ll come up with something soon enough. If there can be an International Harry Potter Day (I wish I was kidding – May 2nd), then I’m sure there can be a day for what Potterheads are an embodiment of – ‘Excruciating Pain’.

5 ways to ease pain using the mind-body connection - Harvard Health

Let’s start with the basics. WHO defines pain as “an unpleasant sensation that WHO will change the definition of every few years just to mess with medical students”. Some paramedical authorities like gym trainers define it as the answer to “No __ No Gain”. Bollywood aficionados define it as ‘Race’ and ‘Housefull’ movie series. Teenagers define it as ‘bottle gourd (ghiye ki sabzi) for dinner’. I am sure I haven’t put the best examples up, but all I meant to say is that pain can mean different things to different people, based on personal sensory function and individual experiences.

Talking about causes of pain – diseases, bodily harm, mental health issues are all obvious causes that one may be familiar with. As I am getting older, I am realizing that sleeping too little in the right position or sleeping too much in the wrong position can also cause pain. A career in medicine, interaction with religious/political/woke fanatics, even hangovers beyond the age of 27 are also common, yet less talked about causes of pain. The quote ‘everyone is fighting their own battles’ can be extrapolated to ‘everyone is getting beaten up and hence suffering some pain’. Doesn’t seem so cool now, I bet.

127,854 Body Pain Stock Photos, Pictures & Royalty-Free Images - iStock

Quantification of pain – as someone with a history of an episode of a particularly painful tonsillitis can attest – pain is what the patient says it is. Use numerical rating scale, visual charts, intensity of scream, expression in terms of equivalence to number of minutes of Koffee with Karan watched, but trust the patient to tell you about the pain that is being endured. Pain, much like love, is a sensation. Similarly, if I may, it is ‘treatable’ (up to a certain level) and if you’re faking it, you will get caught sooner or later. Excess drama doesn’t help you in either case.

How to manage pain? I’ll tell you the same four words that I feel Deepika Padukone should’ve said to Ranbir Kapoor in almost every movie they’ve been together in – “Go see a Doctor”. The ‘Google search’ phenomenon quickly switched over to new-age concept of getting our medical opinions from Instagram influencers, and it is a dangerous thing. Instagram usage should be limited exclusively to making your ex jealous or using hundreds of wanderlust-related hashtags every time you go beyond a 30km radius from your home.

On second thought, I agree that Instagram is visually appealing and you’d have had learnt so much more had I put this post up as a reel where I dance and point at empty spaces around me where text will appear. It may help if I put a catchy song in the background but a crop top will probably be, as we’ve been talking about, ‘too painful’ to watch.

How to Talk to Your Doctor About Pain – Cleveland Clinic

I hope you have gained something from this post, but not too much, because I am not paid for writing this. I may come up with a part 2 of this same time next year, or when the International Pain Day actually is. Till then, speak up about your pain, and get help. Don’t believe in “it’s meant to hurt this much”. It is only meant to ‘hurt this much’ without a remedy if you’ve been forced in to attending a slam poetry event.

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1 Response

  1. October 6, 2022

    […] Originally written for Lexicon – The Medical Magazine. Read the original post here. […]

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