Swearing reduces pain – but not if you do it every day

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Research published by Keele University shows that while swearing (or cursing if you prefer) can produce effective short-term pain relief, the effect is much greater for people who do not swear regularly in day-to-day life.

It is believed that swearing helps most people better tolerate pain by provoking an emotional response in the speaker – possibly aggression or anger – leading to “stress-induced analgesia”. This natural form of pain relief is part of the body’s “fight or flight” response, along with the well-known surge in adrenalin. However, it seems that people who curse more often get used to profanity (a psychologist would say they become “habituated” to swearing) such that they do not get the same level of emotional response and, consequently, they do not get the same pain relieving effect.

Source: Press Release via telegraph.co.uk.

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