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Money worries reduce pain tolerance, increases painkiller use




MORE reasons are emerging why many Nigerians are going through various kinds of pain and are abusing painkiller. The rising cost of living and money

According to a new study published in Psychological Science, financial worries, which makes around 72 per cent of us feel stressed about money at some point in our lives may be causing us physical pain.

Lead study author Eileen Chou, of the University of Virginia in Charlottesville, United States (U.S.) and colleagues found that people who feel financially unstable experience more physical pain than those who feel financially secure.

The authors say the inspiration for their study came from the observation that complaints of physical pain and economic security have both increased over the past decade; they set out to determine if the two were linked.

To reach their findings, Chou and colleagues conducted six studies in which they assessed the association between economic security and physical pain.

In one study, the team analyzed data from a geographically diverse consumer panel of 33,720 people across the U.S.. The researchers analyzed the employment status of each individual and looked at how this related to the purchase of over-the-counter (OTC) painkillers.

Back pain, headache and migraine, neck pain and facial ache are the most common types of pain

Compared with households in which at least one adult was employed, the team found that households in which both adults were unemployed spent around 20 per cent more on Over The Counter (OTC) painkillers in 2008.

In an online study – involving 187 participants – the researchers found that individuals who were unemployed and deemed financially insecure at state level were more likely to report experiencing physical pain on a four-item pain scale, compared with employed, financially stable participants.

A further online study found that, compared with subjects who recalled an economically stable period in their lives, those who recalled an economically unstable period reported almost twice the amount of physical pain, even after accounting for age, employment status and negative emotion.

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