What Is Pain? A Look At The Types And Causes
CBD oil is being found to have quite a few applications. One common use is as a supplement to help fight conditions that cause chronic pain. Although not considered a treatment in itself – as much more research on CBD is needed – many are reporting to find solace in its use.
So, it only seemed right to us to take a closer look at the very symptom CBD appears to be helping manage – pain.
WHAT IS PAIN?
On many levels, this is a hard question to answer, a pain is an individual experience. It can get quite philosophical when you start looking at mental anguish and emotional pain, so we are going to stick to the pure physical sensation for our explanation.
However, even this is not straight forward. Science does not fully understand pain, and since everyone perceives it differently, only the individual experiencing it can describe what it is for them. Pain cannot be measured directly, and as such, scientists and medical professionals often rely on the individual’s perception of the pain to gauge how severe it is.
At its core, pain is a message from to the brain that something is wrong or damaged. This could be from either an external or internal source.
THE TYPES OF PAIN
Pain is usually categorised as one of two types, either acute or chronic. Acute pain is short term, and is often a sign of danger (such as touching something sharp) or injury. Once the danger is removed, or the injury heals, pain tends to cease.
Chronic pain is pain that lasts more than 3 months. As such, it can majorly impact a person’s quality of life. It can affect all aspects, from the ability to work and move, to emotional strains and resulting relationship problems. Chronic pain is often a symptom of an underlying problem, and can be very hard to manage.
CLASSIFICATIONS OF PAIN
Further to the two types of pain, there are also different classifications of pain. These are nociceptive and non-nociceptive pain. Nociceptive includes somatic and visceral pain, while non-nociceptive includes neuropathic and sympathetic pain.
Nociceptive pain is when specific pain receptors are stimulated by a stimulus classed as too intense. These receptors monitor temperature, vibration, stretch, and chemical release from damaged cells.
Somatic pain is the most common form of pain, covering pain felt by activation of receptors in the skin, muscles, joints, bones and ligaments. They also alert the brain to inflammation.
Visceral Pain, once again, covers the activation of specific pain receptors, but this time in internal organs. They sense stretch, inflammation, and oxygen deprivation.
Non-nociceptive pain covers pain that doesn’t come from a specific receptor, but from within the central nervous system itself. This is usually down to damage within the nervous system, causing nerves to misfire and send false signals to the brain.
Neuropathic pain is usually caused when nerves become trapped or pinched in the spinal cord, or when they degenerate due to disease or other negative conditions.
Sympathetic pain is usually caused by a fracture or injury to soft tissue in the limbs. Nerves become damaged and once again misfire signals to the brain, which are processed as pain. It is not specific receptors causing this, but damage to the nerve itself.
As you can see, there are quite a few types of pain out there, all of which can have a negative impact on the sufferer’s life. Why CBD appears to help manage pain is still being investigated, and is likely to be specific to certain conditions. One thing is for sure, though; more and more people are trying CBD – more research shedding light on exactly what is going on is urgently required!