Redheads! They’re so different! So special, so rare! And the same recessive genes that give them their ginger locks also cause them to feel pain in a different way than the rest of us. A study done at Aalborg University in Denmark found that while redheads are better able to handle spicier foods, their bodies are less adept at handling a variety of other sensory experiences, such as extreme cold and dental pain. Annnnnnd gingers are also more inclined to have problems such as endometriosis and sclerosis.
But the good news?
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Two years ago, I was sitting in the bathtub cheerfully shampooing my unruly mop of hair and engaging my morning ablutions. When the time came to wash my privates, a sudden, sharp, stinging sensation arose the second I touched soap to vulva. I actually cried out, causing my curious cat to peek over the tub rim at my submerged body. I rinsed the soap off quickly, but the burning sensation lingered.
And I remained both in pain — and dumbfounded — for the next 18 months. Keep reading »
Love hurts. It sounds like a cliche, but new research suggests it might literally be true. Rejection by a romantic partner during a breakup activates regions of the brain associated with physical pain, according to the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences study.
“Rejection literally hurts,” researcher Edward Smith, a cognitive neuroscientist at Columbia University, told LiveScience.
People have long described the sadness over a lost love or a romantic breakup in much the same way, using words like “pain” and “hurt.” They often sounded as though they’re speaking interchangeably about mental anguish and physical suffering — making scientists wonder whether the two feelings might be triggering the same areas of the brain. Read more… Keep reading »
Lil Wayne endured a torturous dental session that included eight root canals in eight hours. The dentist worked on his grillz, added more implants, redid several other implants, and repaired the few real teeth the rapper had left. Can you imagine how awful Wayne’s breath was if he needed all this work? He probably didn’t feel the pain, though, because syzzurp is a hell of a drug. And this oral surgery allowed him to stay a free man until March 2. [TMZ]
Do you think you would have survived a gut-wrenching surgery like this? What’s the worst pain you’ve experienced? Mine was a bone marrow biopsy, which involved drilling into the marrow of my pelvis while I was fully awake. Now, every time I get menstrual cramps I think: “Is this all nature’s got? Bring it on — I can take more and them some.” Keep reading »
We’ve all heard the old women-versus-men pain threshold debate. It almost always goes the same way. A man in the middle of a crowded bar raucously boasts that he can withstand more pain than a woman. Any woman! Then, some gal in his vicinity gently puts down her gin and tonic, peers over her glasses and says, “We go through childbirth.” Finally, an Australian TV show host wants to settle this thing once and for all. With the help of a few lovely ladies, he hooked himself up to a machine that simulates contractions. The nurses increased the duration and intensity of the contractions until … surprise! He couldn’t handle it. After only three hours he called it quits. The show ends with the dude saying, “We have nothing, women win. Men don’t.” That’s right, boys! Keep reading »
Don’t get me wrong—redheads are awesome. But they also feel more pain than the rest of the population, are more sensitive to heat, and need 20% more anesthesia to knock them out. And a new study shows another odd side effect of being a redhead—they’re less likely to get proper dental care. It’s not their fault—scientists have found that annual teeth cleanings and occasional fillings just hurt more for them. If dentists don’t up the anesthetic ante for the flame-haired, redheaded patients are twice as likely to skip dental appointments and let problems go untreated. [CNN] Keep reading »
Holy s**t! A U.K. study found that swearing increases our pain tolerance. Participants in the study were asked to keep their hands in freezing cold water for as long as they could while repeating certain words. Peeps were able to withstand the cold an average of 40 seconds longer when repeating a curse word, compared to when they were saying something non-offensive. The best words to say next time you stub your toe—the f-bomb and that one that begins with an “s” and ends with a “t” had the most pain-killing properties. Oh, and since the study was in England, “bullocks” scored pretty high too. [CNN] Keep reading »
I’ve never thought of my cramps as particularly debilitating, but even I have had moments when I need something stronger than Midol. (One vacation where I was unable to get out of bed comes to mind.) But there’s a new treatment out there—Allay, a pulsed electromagnetic field therapy device—that could nix period pain forevs. This treatment was originally used for sports injuries—even on racehorses. It works by emitting a low level electromagnetic current to the cells down there, restoring the electrical balance that’s messed up during menstruation. Place the cloth circle on your abdomen behind the elastic of your undies, turn on the switch, and let the currents do their work. Some say Allay works as a placebo, but five cramp-free days is enough motivation to try it. [Daily Mail]
If you’re a little wary of anything used to treat horses, here are some other unconventional remedies that might work for you. Keep reading »