Types of Pain

Pain is such a general term. There are different categories and levels of pain. Breaking a bone, sciatic nerve pain, migraine headaches, post-op pain, pulling a muscle – those are all different feelings. Living with fibromyalgia, I’ve certainly learned and experienced my share of pain and it’s often difficult to explain to others what I’m truly feeling.

Throbbing pain – I’m certain everyone has felt this at some point in their life, such as being on your feet for a long period of time. It’s as if your muscle or joint developed a heartbeat, only it hurts every time it “beats”. This is a common feeling for me and other fibro fighters. For me specifically, the throbbing occurs mostly in my lower back, knees, and my shoulder blade area.

Shooting pain – This is a tough one to describe. Shooting pain can come at any time. I can be sitting on the couch completely still and suddenly it feels as though someone is sticking me with a needle, but instead of it being on the skin/muscle, it’s deeper. This is nerve pain, and it absolutely sucks because there’s not too much that helps this aside from rest. It can be quite severe and can literally make you immobile.

Radiating pain – This is what I call my “usual” pain. It’s there if I move and it’s there when I don’t. It can feel like a burning sensation sometimes. Typically my tender points are the areas that get the radiating pain (back, knees, elbows, etc). The severity varies as well. On good days, which are few and far between, I have a low “dull” pain. It’s still there, but it’s not as bothersome. On work days or other times when I overexert myself, it’s severe.

Migraine headaches – Ugh. Everyone’s had a headache at some point in their life. Basically multiply a normal headache by about 1,000 and there you go. Extreme sensitivity to light and sounds, nausea, and of course the horrible pounding on your head that makes you want to die.

Those four “pain categories” are the most common for me. The one I’m experiencing now is the shooting pain. It is going up and down my left leg and it’s quite painful. It started this morning and the level of pain increased throughout the day. I don’t experience this often but when I do it usually doesn’t last long. This is different and I’m beginning to get really uncomfortable. So, on that note, I’m going to end here and rest up. I have a 9 hour day of work tomorrow (on my feet) so I hope this goes away soon!

Thanks for reading.


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