Spicy foods and pain tolerance?

The thread about spicy foods and mint triggered a question in my head. I wonder if people who like really spicy foods have a higher tolerance for pain, in general?

I like really spicy food (I always order “Thai hot” at Thai places, for example) but I’m pretty quick to take a pain killer if I feel pain. I don’t like pain. If I don’t have any pain killers I think I’m reasonably able to handle the pain, though I may get whiny about it after a while.

So if I call myself the first data point, I’d say that I have a high tolerance for spicy food and a low tolerance for pain, since like I said I’m pretty quick to take medication when I feel pain.

I love spicy food. I mean to the point where no normal restaurant food is ever spicy enough “à la carte.” My pain tolerance is very high however. At least I think it is.

Never thought of it that way. I love spicy food. I like it to the point it where I start sweating, that hot.

My hygenist is suprised of my pain tolerance when cleaning my teeth, apparently she’s going very deep in my gums to clean, and has informed me on more than one occassion there is no way she could do that with most of her patients they would need freezing.

I do feel it when she hits a sweet spot, it isn’t pleasant. I don’t jump out of the chair or anything but it isn’t comfortable that for sure, I do however squeeze the handles of the chair. I just hate having half my mouth frozen, especially my tongue for 3-5 hours afterword. I find that more disturbing than the temporary pain.

I have to agree. I love spicy food and have a high pain tolerance; I have a knee injury and try to avoid meds unless the pain is just intolerable or if I just need to sleep.

I enjoy spicy foods and even enjoy a little habanero heat in some of my sauces. Too much heat will hide the other flavors in the food so I draw the line there, but I do enjoy leaving a restaurant with my lips feeling slightly numb from the spices.

While I have used the morphine drip in the hospital after recovering from some surgeries (broken ankle and ACL reconstruction) I’ve never taken a pain pill in my life.

I can’t handle even mildly hot spicy foods, but I have a very high pain tolerance.

I have what I’d guess is an average pain tolerance, but I love habanero-and-hotter spicy foods.

I love spicy food, and have basically no tolerance for pain

No, Opal, I wouldn’t use painkillers if I experienced some pain from eating Chiles. Ironically the Chiles are my painkillers.

I love extremely spicy food and have a very high tolerance for pain, I think.

I have a very high tolerance for pain, primarily due to being in chronic pain for 20+ years. I enjoy spicy foods very much.

I’m gonna prevaricate about the theory. I think I have about an average tolerance for pain. But I was able to build up a tolerance for spicy food over several years.

The first time I had tom yum goong I thought I was going to die, and had to take a day off work the next day. However I started eating increasingly spicy food over the years to the point where I could tolerate a vindaloo and not distinguish it from a regular curry, and last year I ate a “100% Thai spicy” curry - in Thailand - with no ill effects.

My son, starting around age 11, decided that he wanted to be able to eat spicy foods. Up to that point he couldn’t eat my chili, for example. He realized he liked the flavors of the spicy foods that he tried, and wanted to have a tolerance for the heat so that he could eat them. We built him up to it and now (age 16, but it’s been solid for a few years now) he eats spicy foods with no problem. He doesn’t like them quite a spicy as my husband and I, but he can eat pretty spicy things and not complain, and order them again next time. I was very proud of him for deciding to put himself through that process instead of doing what it seems like most kids do, which is avoiding food that they have a hard time eating.

I can’t very accurately say what his pain tolerance is like, though. He doesn’t get hurt very often, for one thing.

Love the spicy foods.

I can handle getting punched in the face with a ball bat with no problem. But make me touch something hot; like say a plate out of the microwave; I turn into a big giant wuss.

I put hot sauce on my hot sauce, but I am a complete and utter weenie when it comes to pain.

Interesting how pain is not universal, and how some people tolerate some kinds of pain better than others. For me, as I said above, I don’t mind the pain of pepper/curry based spicy foods but horseradish hot makes me very uncomfortable (I like the taste, so I will use a little bit). I can handle the pain of a shot or a cut or a blow (usually in the form of running into something while walking–clumsy me) way better than I can handle something like, for example, dental pain. Pain from temperature heat I can handle pretty well–I used to walk barefoot on the sidewalks and streets when I was growing up in southern Arizona, when it was well over 100 outside, and while it did burn my feet, I was able to tolerate it. Any kind of injury in my mouth though? Sensitive tooth? Bite my cheek? canker sore? Totally wimp out.

Same here. I don’t think there’s a correlation.