Why is there a relatively large delay between impact and feeling pain when something inevitably smacks into the old beanbag?


My nuts currently hurt. ID badges on retractable reels are a hidden danger. The horrible delay when you’re waiting to see how bad the pain is going to be got me wondering.

In: 0

My condolences for your beanbag.

Sensations are sent by nerves, with different nerves being responsible for different sensations. Different nerves have the ability to send signals faster than others. This is due to how myelinated they are (A covering that allows for faster transfer). Sharp touch or pain fibres tend to be heavily myelinated and transmit very fast. You therefore feel these sensations faster than others. Other sensations like pressure travel slightly slower.

That being said, the reason you probably have a delay is because following an injury your body will start to swell in the associated area. The aching or throbbing is due to the swelling and the sensation of that pressure. The immediate pain is the activation of those fast pain fibres.