Acute Pain: Signs, Symptoms, Causes & More


Nov 24, 2018


Feeling pain can be frustrating, irritating, and debilitating. This is especially the case when you have a million things on your To-Do list and feel like there’s not really any spare time to take off your responsibilities.

However, if you’re experiencing acute pain, it’s essential to take some time off to rest and receive adequate treatment. After all, the only way to get back on track as soon as possible is to fully heal. Failing to receive proper care can only lead to complications and even more time off the field to do the things you want to get done.

But what exactly is acute pain?

What Is Acute Pain?

Acute pain the sensation you feel as soon as you experience an injury. For example, if you break a bone, slice open a finger while chopping vegetables, or fall down the stairs, you’re going to feel acute pain. It’s a signal from your body that it has just undergone physical trauma.

Generally, once the injury heals, the pain stops.

Common Causes of Acute Pain

In addition to the blunt trauma examples mentioned above, a person could also suffer from acute pain due to any of the following reasons:

  • Going to the dentist
  • Sprains and strains of a body part
  • Infections on a cut
  • Getting burned
  • Giving birth
  • Slipping and falling
  • Bumping a body part against a hard surface
  • Menstrual cramps
  • Passing a kidney stone

The range of pain can vary significantly depending on what’s causing it or the severity of the injury.

Signs and Symptoms of Acute Pain

Acute pain tends to be of a relatively short duration (and we use this term loosely, since when someone is in pain, a couple of days can feel like a lifetime). The most common signs and symptoms of acute pain include:

  • Sharp pain
  • Throbbing
  • Burning
  • Stabbing pain
  • Tingling
  • Weakness
  • Numbness

Effects Of Acute Pain On The Body

It’s important to note that acute pain can affect much more than an injured body part. If a person is experiencing debilitating pain, the effects will bleed into other areas of the person’s life. It’s very common for a person who’s suffering from severe pain to be unable to get restful sleep because of it, or lose their appetite.

Depending on the location of the pain, it can also cause breathing difficulties, and in a worst-case scenario, could result in addiction to pain medication or even depression.

Treatment Options For Acute Pain

If it was a minor injury, your medical provider will likely instruct you to rest, ice the injury, and maybe keep it compressed and/or elevated. Over-the-counter medication may also help alleviate the pain.

However, when dealing with more serious injuries, the person may need stronger medications, such as opioids, as well as physical therapy, pain management alternatives, and as a last resort, surgery.

24-Hour Emergency Room Services in Colorado Springs and Texas

If you’re suffering from pain, let us help you. If you have questions or need immediate treatment, your nearest Complete Care location is ready to help, no matter the time of day or night. We offer a variety of services to help you and your family in your time of need. No appointments are necessary.