The current pain scale is a joke

There is always a pain scale hanging in doctors offices and hospitals, every time you say you have some sort of pain they ask you “What is it on a scale of 1-10?”. Here is the current pain scale:

0-2 very mild

3-4 Tolerable

5-6 is very distressing

7-8 is very intense

9-10 is unbearable/death like

Now the doctors don’t like to believe you if you say it is a 8-10, stating “oh, it can’t be that bad”. Oh please tell me how bad my pain is then, since you seem to know my body more than I do. I have actually gotten into an argument with a nurse who claimed that the IV couldn’t possibly hurt, well it did and does every time I get one. It’s not a secret that those of us with chronic pain feel the pain more. A simple needle prick can feel like excruciating pain.

Nobody will ever understand your pain unless they feel it, and I wouldn’t wish this pain on anyone ever. They should really put some mor thought into a more accurate pain scale. One that actually shows it better and realities to the patients pain more. Below is a more accurate pain chart for a person dealing with chronic pain.

0-3: NO PAIN This is very rare, like some kind of magical unicorn.

4-6: NORMAL PAIN This is how we feel every day. This is our “normal”. Because of this we are really good at hiding it. We can even gnome the pain sometimes, which might cause us to over do and overextend ourselves.

This is where “normal” people would be crying and needing pain relievers.

7-10: Heightened. This is where our pain is heightened above the normal. The pain is more noticeable but can still be hidden with a smile. The pain interferes with our daily tasks but we can work through it.

11-13: Widespread. This is where the pain is more widespread and noticeable to others. We are probably more quiet, set back and moody. At this point we are having a hard time concentrating and getting through the day.

14+ Unbearable. This is where the pain is unbearable and overwhelming. We will not want to move. We will more than likely be in tears as this is our breaking point.

How many times have we heard if you are at a 10 you should go to the ER? Seriously! If those with chronic pain went to the ER every time they were at a 10 we would either live there, or be laughed at and thought of us drug seekers. No thank you! At a 10 we grab out blankets, pillows, snacks, tv remote, and phone/ iPad. We simply take anything we may need if we even have the energy and ability to do so and hibernate until we are able to move and deal with the pain again. We definitely aren’t going to the ER, since they won’t do anything for us. And once you mention the word fibromyalgia, it’s all over, nothing will done. The sad truth is we get used to our “new normal”. We get used to living with the pain, well at least up to a 5, then we think about taking something, if we have it.

The simple truth is that we’ve gotten so use to our pain, we don’t like it and we don’t want it, but sadly we are stuck with it. Some people seem to think we just can’t imagine living without it, but it’s part of us and some days we are lucky enough to be able to tune it out.


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