Everyone experiences pain differently.
How much distress it causes varies from person to person, and even from day to day—and a lot of that depends on how you think. If you are hopeful, optimistic, and realistic in your thoughts, your pain level will seem lower. On the flip side, there are a number of different thinking patterns that can make pain worse. Once you understand how your thinking style affects your pain, you can learn how to better manage your pain and feel better. These are the pain symptoms you should never ignore.
You think: “What if?”
You have an active imagination, envisioning pain as evil, certain that it is leading to further disease or disability. You ask yourself constantly ‘What if … ?’ Your easy access to medical information on the Internet, on television and in books feeds your fears. You read about a disease, even a rare one, and you’re sure you have it. When pain strikes, you stay on the couch or head for bed. You’re wary of doing anything that might make you feel worse. The problem with this thinking style, known as catastrophizing, is that it leads to a heightened focus on pain, increased muscle tension, and avoidance of things that give you quality of life. Try to stop focusing on the pain to get some relief.