5 Ways to Improve Your Pain Tolerance. But, first…


Where Low Pain Tolerance Comes From

  • Trauma
  • Genetics
  • Pandemics/ Disasters/ Wars

Your Pain Tolerance can say a lot about you.

Interestingly, studies have found red heads to have lower pain tolerance. There may be more than one factor at play…


Genetics can influence our Pain Tolerance, according to research. In my clinical experience, this is often true.


Trauma- Having a low pain threshold can come from past trauma such as early childhood trauma, including abuse/neglect.

It can also be a response from adult trauma or abuse.

Natural Disasters, Wars and Pandemics increase the stress response and can affect Pain.


PTSD is a condition that can affect Pain tolerance. It is often called PTS (dropping the “D” for Disorder can lessen the stigma).

Pandemics can cause a form of PTSD or PTS. 

Did You Know?…Acupuncture can be effective for the PTSD Person suffering with Anxiety, Sleep and Stress. It is true. I have seen it and experienced it.

Check Back for More on PTSD Here 


It will be interesting to see how the current COVID-19 Pandemic affects people in relation to Pain tolerance!


CBD Topicals and Oil taken by Mouth can Help with Pain and Stress.

Practitioner Grade CBD Products are sold here at Aleesha D Acupuncture. 


Read More on CBD  Here


5 Ways to Improve Your Pain Tolerance (Reasons it May be Low)…

  1. Sleep
  2. Stress-Reduce it!
  3. Stress-Take on Less
  4. Movement
  5. Breathing 
  6. Talk Therapy
  7. Meditation


By the Way, Acupuncture is Great for Pain!

How does Acupuncture Work on Pain?…

Acupuncture Activates the Nervous System which then tells the brain to release pain-relieving chemicals like endorphins.


Sleep- Sleep is huge! Sleep is when your body repairs. Those who have a deficit of sleep show lower pain tolerance. 

Stress- If Stress makes Pain Worse, then Let’s lower our Stress. There are ways we can improve our stress. It is true that sometimes genetics has an influence. However, we do not need to take on new stress. Say “No” to new responsibilities if you are already stressed. Reduce the stress you already have (see other ways on the above list to help).

Movement- We can do daily movement. If we are too stressed out to do strenuous exercise (like H.I.I.T. training) or Hot Yoga, we can opt for slower, more gentle options. This is often not a very Western way to look at self-improvement. We often think we need to Go-Go-Go and Work-Work-Work. We think Faster and More is better. Well, I am here to tell you that in my early twenties I had a lesson in this…

I did Qigong for the first time for 45 minutes and didn’t think anything of it other than it was an interesting activity to try that “old” people do just to do something…Boy was I WRONG. DEAD WRONG. Then next day I awoke to soreness in muscles everywhere. Muscles I did not even know I had. Movements like Qigong (Chigong), TaiChi and Gentle Yoga stretches can have a profound positive effect on our bodies since they use all muscles. Sometimes keeping muscles taut and stretching them gently in order to release long-held stress.

Meditation is great for reducing stress. I am a lifelong participant and recommend DAILY practice to reduce your stress. It has even been proven to lower blood pressure! Perhaps this is why doctors of old would prescribe petting a cat to their bp patients.


Meditation Resources Here


Breathing exercises- Becoming aware of the breath can be a life saver for stressful times in our lives. Hey! We will always be jumping through hoops of fire in life. We need to train ourselves to stop and breathe. Like acupuncture, breathing can get you out of the Fight or Flight and back into the Rest and Digest. I like a few techniques and will share two:

  1. The 1-2 count: Breathe in on count of 1; breathe out on count of 1. Then breathe in on count of 2; breathe out on count of 2. Repeat. If you forget which number you are on, start at 1 again. So Simple. The brain can easily return to this even when stress is causing fuzzy thinking. 
  2. The 4-7-8 Breathe in for a count of 4-hold breath for a count of 7-exhale out for a count of 8. This one helped me be able to hold my breath for over a minute! It takes practice so start slowly. Check with your doctor before holding your breath longer than this exercise.

Talk Therapy- Many with intensified pain have had Childhood trauma, especially during the early formative years (ages 1-3) and also on up to age 7. I am not going to get real science-y here and you can do your own further research into this. Just know that the memory of trauma affects the nerves when the brain is “triggered” and we carry these traumas in our tissues. Ever feel the stress in an injured area of your body?-It is kind of like this.

These days almost everyone has seen a talk therapist so get the stigma right out of your head! Seeking help from a licensed therapist can help you to see why you are holding stress in your body and you can begin (under the care of a professional) to work through this and improve your body’s response to stress and your ability to improve your pain tolerance can follow.

These days therapy can be done through virtual means (in the middle of a pandemic) thanks to companies like Telehealth and Zoom. No excuses. Take care of yourself. Time for Self Care. Especially during a Pandemic, do the Self-Care.


Remember, our Minds and Bodies are Connected into this one Being we call Self. Often, emotional pain goes un-noticed until physical pain manifests. And it ALWAYS Manifests Physically, eventually. Now, go take care of Yourself. You are investing in Your Now Self & Your Future Self. Show them both some Love. Perhaps the Love & Care You did Not Get in Childhood.

Check Back for a Great Stress Reduction Therapy You Can do Anywhere. Anytime.


Thanks for Reading!

Written by Aleesha Ackerman, LAc

Aleesha Ackerman is a certified and state licensed acupuncturist with a Master’s degree in acupuncture. She also holds a Bachelor’s degree from Hamline University. Aleesha owns and operates Aleesha D Acupuncture clinic for Pain and Women’s Health in Anoka, MN.

She became interested in acupuncture and holistic medicine when acupuncture cured her of debilitating migraine pain after an auto collision with a semi-truck. Aleesha specializes in treating acute and chronic pain and Women’s Health. Women come to her everyday with issues such as hot flashes, mood imbalance, low energy and for Cosmetic Acupuncture for wrinkles, crow’s feet, laugh lines and improvement in overall skin tone . Read more about Aleesha and what she specializes in Here.

Patients at Aleesha D Acupuncture say they feel cared for and listened to. They are happy to get the much-needed pain and stress relief from their treatments!

Aleesha D Acupuncture is located in historic downtown Anoka at 229 Jackson Street just off Highway 10 with free parking.

Get in and Feel Better, Move Forward!


This article is not intended to replace any health care. No information on this site should be relied on to determine medical diagnosis or treatment for a medical condition. As with any health concerns, always be sure to consult your health care provider with any health concerns.

Licensed Acupuncturist in Anoka Serving Andover, Anoka, Big Lake, Champlin, Circle Pines, Columbus, Coon Rapids, Dayton, East Bethel, Elk River, Forest Lake, Fridley, Ham Lake, Isanti, Lino Lakes, Maple Grove, Minneapolis, Now Then, Oak Grove, Osseo, Ostego, Ramsey, Saint Francis, Saint Paul, Shoreview, Spring Lake Park, Vadnais Heights and White Bear Lake.

Zip codes we treat: 55304, 55303, 55309, 55014, 55316, 55433, 55448, 55327, 55330, 55432, 55040, 55401, 55402, 55403, 55404, 55406, 55407, 55408, 55409, 55410, 55411, 55412, 55413, 55416, 55418, 55419, 55421, 55422, 55011, 55311, 55369, 55102, 55103, 55104, 55105, 55106, 55107, 55108, 55101, 55109, 55110, 55111, 55113, 55114, 55116, 55117, 55120, 55124, 55125, 55115, 55118, 55119, 55121, 55122, 55123, 55126, 55129, 55130, 55146, 55127, 55128, 55133, 55144, 55145, 55155, 55164, 55165, 55166, 55166, 55168, 55170, 55175, 55187, 55188, 55171, 55172, 55014, 55025, 55371, 55398, 55308, 55960

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