Your massage therapist is not making idle conversation when they ask “What does your pain feel like?”.
The type of pain felt can be used to deepen assessment and ultimately create a treatment that is focused on the possible cause, not just the symptoms.
What is the language of pain?
Nerve pain is often described as shooting, burning or stabbing. ‘Pins and needles’ and numbness are also often sourced back to nerves.
Muscle and other soft tissue pain is felt as aching or sore.
Joint pain and stiffness can be indicators of arthritis.
Intensity, location and frequency of pain are also important.
The more your massage therapist understands your pain, the better treatment they can provide. When pain suggests that the cause is outside the scope of practice of a massage therapist they will refer you to someone who can better help you.
Help your massage therapist help you by bringing rich, descriptive adjectives to your next appointment.