Swearing Makes Pain More Tolerable
That muttered curse word that reflexively comes out when you stub your toe could actually make it easier to bear the throbbing pain, a new study suggests.
Swearing is a common response to pain, but no previous research has connected the uttering of an expletive to the actual physical experience of pain.
"Swearing has been around for centuries and is an almost universal human linguistic phenomenon," said Richard Stephens of Keele University in England and one of the authors of the new study. "It taps into emotional brain centers and appears to arise in the right brain, whereas most language production occurs in the left cerebral hemisphere of the brain."
This study certainly explains the quantity and creativity of the muttered curses overheard in the galleries of the AZ Senate and House during the waning days of this year's session - the Republican-led lege was being a serious pain in the @$$ and people were talking like they had an untreated hemorrhoid.
Yep - it's all clear now. :)
BTW, my favorite comment from the LiveScience article was the 2nd one -
posted 12 July 2009, 3:24 pm ET
Ironically, this is evidence that Rahm Emanuel is probably the most well-adjusted person in the White House (and possibly in the Western World).
I know a few people who are as well-adjusted as Emanuel, though none of them work in the White House. :)