These are the 20 most painful health conditions you can suffer from according to the NHS

Arthritis can cause sufferers misery Unfortunately, many of us are affected by long-term physical health issues.

But we find a way to cope with them and battle on with our daily lives.

We cannot cure all of these conditions, but with the help of medicine, plenty of rest, and support from loved ones, they are certainly manageable.

Some though, can be so debilitating and painful that they disrupt the way we live.

The NHS has listed 20 health conditions known to cause pain so disabling that they can prevent you performing any daily tasks.

Below, we take a look at them. Some may seem obvious, but others most certainly are not. Cluster headaches

Cluster headaches are excruciating attacks of pain in one side of the head, often felt around the eye. Headaches can also be debilitating (Image: Getty Images/iStockphoto) Cluster headache charity OUCH (UK) say although estimated to be around the same number of cluster headache sufferers in the UK as there are sufferers of MS, “hardly anyone” has heard of the condition and most people afflicted with this “devastating” disease are struggling on alone and isolated with their pain. Shingles

Shingles, also known as herpes zoster, is an infection of a nerve and the skin around it which usually affects a particular area on one side of the body.

The main symptom is a painful rash that develops into itchy blisters which contain particles of the virus

An attack usually lasts between two and four weeks, but 20 per cent of sufferers go on to develop nerve pain in the affected area of skin. This pain can be severe and last for several months or even longer.

Shingles can occur at any age, but is most common in people over the age of 70. It is much less common in children. Frozen shoulder

Frozen shoulder means your shoulder is painful and stiff for months, sometimes years. The NHS says it means the joint can become so tight and stiff that it is virtually impossible to carry out simple movements, such as raising your arm. Daily activities can become an ordeal.

It is not clear what causes frozen shoulder but it can happen after a shoulder or arm injury, and is more common in people with diabetes. Broken bones

This is an obvious one, but a fractured ankle, hip, arm or nose is one of the most painful things you can experience.

That’s unless the break is small, but usually, a broken bone is very painful, especially when you try to move it.

Broken bones can heal by themselves, but they may need to be lined up and fixed in position so they set properly. As a general rule, the older you are and the bigger the bone that’s broken, the longer it will take to heal. Dangerous new ‘peegasm’ toilet trend

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Top 20 most painful health conditions

Complex regional pain syndrome (CRPS)

This is described by the NHS website as a “poorly understood condition” in which a person experiences persistent severe and debilitating pain.

Although most cases of CRPS are triggered by an injury, the resulting pain is much more severe and long-lasting than normal.

The pain is usually confined to one limb but it can sometimes spread to other parts of the body.

The skin of the affected body part can become so sensitive that just a slight touch, bump or even a change in temperature can provoke intense pain.

Affected areas can also become swollen, stiff or undergo fluctuating changes in colour or temperature.

Many cases of CRPS gradually improve to some degree over time. However, some cases of CRPS never go away, and the affected person will experience pain for many years. Heart attack

A heart attack is life-threatening and sees the heart muscle starved of oxygen-rich blood. Heart attacks are caused when the arteries narrow and fill up with fatty materials which prevents blood from flowing properly (Image: PA) Most are caused when the arteries narrow and fill up with fatty materials which prevents blood from flowing properly.

Smoking and living an unhealthy lifestyle are major contributory factors in heart attacks, so regular exercise and maintaining a good diet are vital.

But through no fault of their own some people are more prone to having them as heart disease can be hereditary.

The most common signs of a heart attack are :

Chest pain – tightness, heaviness, pain or a burning feeling in your chest

Pain in arms, neck, jaw, back or stomach – for some people, the pain or tightness is severe, while other people just feel uncomfortable


Feeling light-headed

Becoming short of breath

Feeling nauseous or vomiting

Visit the British Heart Foundation’s website for more information. Slipped disc

A new poll by the Chartered Society of Physiotherapy (CSP) reveals how deep-rooted the fear of movement has become for people with back painThe NHS website explains one of the most common causes of back pain is a slipped disc. It’s often the result of a twisting or lifting injury. One of the discs in the spine ruptures, and the gel inside leaks out.Most people with a slipped disc experience sudden and severe lower back pain. It’s usually eased by lying down, and often made worse by moving your back, coughing or sneezing. A slipped disc can also cause leg pain. The Kent areas most affected by suicide Kids under 18 face energy drink ban Measles surge sees rise in Kent cases Kent’s top 10 GP surgeries Sickle cell disease Sickle cell disease is the name for a group of inherited conditions that affect the red blood cells.A sudden episode of pain, known as a pain crisis, is one of the most common and distressing symptoms of sickle cell disease.The pain, which usually occurs in the bones and joints, can vary from mild to severe and last for up to seven days.Some people may have an episode every few weeks, while others may have fewer than one a year. Arthritis Arthritis can cause sufferers misery (Image: scu) People with arthritis endure constant and often disabling joint pain, usually in the hips, knees, wrists or fingers. The pain can come on suddenly or over time, and is often linked with muscle aches and stiffness in the joints. Migraine More than “just a headache” – migraine is a complex disabling neurological disorder, the Migraine Trust says.It explains: “For many people the main feature is a painful headache. Other symptoms include disturbed vision, sensitivity to light, sound and smells, feeling sick and vomiting. Migraine attacks can be very frightening and may result in you having to lie still for several hours.”The symptoms will vary from person to person and individuals may have different symptoms during different attacks. Your attacks may differ in length and frequency. Migraine attacks usually last from 4 to 72 hours and most people are free from symptoms between attacks. Migraine can have an enormous impact on your work, family and social lives.” Sciatica Sciatica is a back problem that affects the sciatic nerve. (Image: Getty Images/OJO Images RF) The sciatic nerve is the longest nerve in the body and runs from behind the pelvis down to your feet. Sciatica occurs if it becomes irritated or compressed in any way – this most commonly involves pressure being placed on the nerve by a slipped disc for example – and the pain will basically follow the path of the nerve, so what you’re describing in terms of it starting in the lower back and progressing through to your leg seems to fit with this.Other symptoms can include tingling sensations, a bit like pins and needles in the leg, cramp, and shooting pain that starts in the buttock region and travels swiftly down towards the foot.The pain of sciatica can vary from mild to extremely painful – to the point where in severe cases it is impossible to put any weight on the affected leg.Sciatica can affect just about anyone, but the younger you are, the less likely it is. Kidney stones The NHS website explains that passing a kidney stone can produce a sudden, sharp, cramping pain in your lower back or the side of your abdomen, or occasionally in your groin. The pain may last for minutes or hours, with pain-free intervals in between.The pain often begins in the middle of the night and can be so severe that those who experience it may feel the need to go to A&E.Most kidney stones are small enough to pass out in your urine, and the pain disappears once the stone has been passed. Appendicitis Appendicitis is a painful swelling of the appendix, a finger-like pouch attached to the gut wall. It’s most common in children, who typically complain of pain in the middle of their tummy that comes and goes. The pain then shifts to the lower-right side of the tummy and gets worse.Appendicitis is a medical emergency that usually needs an urgent operation to remove the appendix before it bursts. Trigeminal neuralgia Trigeminal neuralgia is sudden, severe facial pain. […]

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