Why are paper cuts so painful?

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Offline chris

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Why are paper cuts so painful?
« on: 09/01/2009 08:19:33 »
I was asked today why paper cuts are so painful (thank you Sean in RSA)?

Does anyone have any thoughts?

Chris
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Offline JnA

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Why are paper cuts so painful?
« Reply #1 on: 09/01/2009 14:13:08 »
Most paper cuts occur on your fingers where there are more sensory receptors? They hurt on your tongue and lip too.
The location of fingers also means that you are more likely to bump and knock it repeatedly..?





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Offline LeeE

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Why are paper cuts so painful?
« Reply #2 on: 09/01/2009 14:59:32 »
...And its claws are as big as cups, and for some reason it's got a tremendous fear of stamps! And Mrs Doyle was telling me it's got magnets on its tail, so if you're made out of metal it can attach itself to you! And instead of a mouth it's got four arses!

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Offline MonikaS

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Why are paper cuts so painful?
« Reply #3 on: 09/01/2009 17:13:08 »
Quote
From the wikipedia article:
Because the shallow cut does not bleed very much, the pain receptors are left open to the air, ensuring continued pain.

Fascinating! Does this mean that putting the finger in water would help?
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Offline JnA

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Why are paper cuts so painful?
« Reply #4 on: 09/01/2009 23:55:26 »
Quote
From the wikipedia article:
Because the shallow cut does not bleed very much, the pain receptors are left open to the air, ensuring continued pain.

Fascinating! Does this mean that putting the finger in water would help?


I suspect it would.. or just putting something over it.. Vaseline or other barrier type cream. Maybe that's why the cuts to the lips and tongue don't seem to hurt so much after the initial injury.. I was thinking that it might have had to do with saliva washing out foreign  matter more efficiently.. but the exposure to air thing is brilliant!

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Offline Karsten

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Why are paper cuts so painful?
« Reply #5 on: 10/01/2009 00:34:16 »
Superglue. Or Crazy glue. Should work, but I have not tried yet.

Works great to repair torn fingernails, at least until they have grown back to a length when the torn part can be cut off without causing bleeding. That I have tried and it worked like a charm after reinforcing the nail with some tape and saturating that with the glue.

And, yes, I do think that removing air works to end the pain. Band-aids would do that. Sticking finger in mouth as well. Both seem to work to alleviate the pain.

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