How can the pain intensity from a tiny injury (eg peeling a bit of skin under your finger nail) be every bit as strong as a much bigger injury?

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How can the pain intensity from a tiny injury (eg peeling a bit of skin under your finger nail) be every bit as strong as a much bigger injury?

In: Biology

Nerves in your body are not evenly distributed. Nerves in the limbs are denser in order to function. The hands for example are giant clusters of nerves to help your hands function. This is why people can play musical instruments because our nerves give us a lot of control over them. That said pain is also not consistently applied by the body and the brain can filter out signals we would normally interpret as pain. This is why breaking a bone hurts when it breaks but when reset your body goes into healing mode and effectively filters out the signals that issue “pain” from the broken bone while it remodels.

See the “sensory homunculus” for the relative density of nerve endings on you body. You will see that the hands and lips are prime places to feel disproportionate amounts of pain.

Another factor of small injuries are due to the nature of papercuts. They cut shallow and bleed very little. This leaves nerve endings exposed to the air, which makes them more likely to send pain signals back to the brain. Similar miniscule injuries are vulnerable to the same effect.