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The Science Behind Paper Cuts (And Why They Hurt So Bad!)





At first glace, paper may seem to be a simple, harmless object. However, the fact of the matter is that it can actually hurt you really bad.

If you’ve ever experienced getting paper cut, then we bet you know what we’re talking about. It can happen so sudddenly and the pain can be so nasty.

It often happens unexpectedly – and it hurts too much!

Source: BigThink

In a LiveScience article, Gabriel Neal, clinical assistant professor of Family Medicine at Texas A&M University, explained:

“Physically, paper cuts hurt as much as they do for a variety of reasons. They typically occur on parts of our bodies that are the most sensitive, such as the fingers, lips or tongue. The nerve networks of these body parts can discriminate with exceptional clarity and specificity, sensations of pressure, heat, cold and injury. Our brains even have specialized areas to receive signals coming from these parts in high definition. The exquisite sensing abilities that makes our fingers, lips and tongue so good at what they normally do, also makes injuries all the more painful.”

We all know (and hate) the feeling of getting a paper cut.

Source: via CNN

Neal further shared:

“These same highly sensitive areas are also parts we use all the time. Cuts on fingers, lips and the tongue tend to reopen throughout day dooming us to relive the pain again and again. Finally, the depth of the wound is perfect for exposing and exciting the nerve fibers of the skin without damaging them the way a deeper, more destructive injury can severely damage the nerve fibers impairing their ability to communicate pain. With a paper cut, the nerve fibers are lit, and they are fully operational.”

To stop the hurt, what you should immediately do is to wash the wound using water and soap. Doing so will help reduce the possibilities of having an infection and can speed up the healing process. If necessary, use a small bandage so you can minimize wound reopening and provide it with cushion.

Watch this video for more information:

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