Being A Victim Of Abuse And Being An Athlete Affect An Individual 's Perception And Tolerance

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Does being a victim of abuse and being an athlete affect an individual’s perception and tolerance of pain? Pain perception is influenced by more than just the physical sensation of being in pain. Touch, vision, audition and olfaction all play roles in the perception of pain. Individuals can experience pain differently based on the experiences they have and the information they receive from their various sensory receptors. Melzack (1999) includes emotional experience as a factor in pain perception; people use emotional words to describe pain. Emotion is a powerful force for athletes and abuse victims. For athletes, the ability to channel emotion into physical activity can enhance performance and help them to work through pain and…show more content…
Social pain is experienced after an aversive social interaction, for example, rejection or exclusion. Psychological pain is experienced as emotions following the loss of reward. The focus of this study will be pain tolerance and threshold of physical pain, however, psychological and social pain are both relevant as they are both experienced in athletics and in victims of abuse. The brain regions most associated with pain are the thalamus, hypothalamus, limbic system and anterior cingulate cortex (ACC), these regions are collectively known as the pain matrix. The number of regions that are part of this matrix demonstrate the multimodality of pain sensation. However, these are not the only brain regions involved in pain perception. Researchers have determined that the nucleus accumbens, the pleasure center of the brain, has a role in pain (Mano & Seymour, 2015). It is likely that the nucleus accumbens plays part in pain relief in situations of pain. This extended from studies researching avoidance learning. While there have been no studies done looking at the role of the nucleus accumbens in pain for athletes, there is a possibility that there is a drive to hit a pain threshold just to relieve oneself of the of pain when exercise is complete.
Influence of Exercise on Pain Perception
Athletes are conditioned to ignore pain when training and competing. As healthy
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